Michael Anissimov Essays at the Lifeboat Foundation

The Lifeboat Foundation website got a complete makeover not too long ago, and all my essays there were upgraded with new images to make them ever more interesting! I suggest you go on over and check some of them out. Many of them are adaptations of my best blog posts:

Existential risks:

Classifying Extinction Risks — 2007

Futurism:

10 Futuristic Materials — 2008 Brain-Computer Interfaces for Manipulating Dreams — 2008 Top Ten Cybernetic Upgrades Everyone Will Want — 2007 (one of my faves!) Immortalist Utilitarianism — 2004 (a classic early work!) Top Ten Transhumanist Technologies — 2007 (made the Digg frontpage!)

Nanotechnology

First-Stage Nanoproducts and Nanoweaponry — 2006

Robotics/AI

What are the Benefits of Mind Uploading? — 2009

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Why Arguments Against Mind Uploading Don’t Work — Constant Neural Molecular Turnover

As always, there’s been some nice activity over at anti-transhumanism central, The New Atlantis Futurisms blog. Most recently is a post “Why Transhumanism Won’t Work”, which is as provocatively named as my recent post “Transhumanism Has Already Won”. The post, a guest post by Mark Gubrud, is more of a screed against mind uploading than against transhumanism in general, however Gubrud claims that “transhumanism itself is uploading writ large.” Basically, Gubrud calls attention to a talk that will be given by a philosophy professor against mind uploading at the upcoming H+ conference at Harvard. The essence of the argument is that advocates of mind uploading are dualists because they speak of a “pattern” that is really a “soul” which is postulated to be transferable across substrates. (It’s ironic that Gubrud makes a guest post arguing against the soul on a site funded by “Washington, D.C.’s premier institute dedicated to applying the Judeo-Christian moral tradition to critical issues of public policy.” It shows that some modern Christians are willing to be pragmatic about …

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Shimizu Corporation Megaengineering Projects

This site has been making the rounds on the blogosphere, I just thought I’d link it because it’s cool stuff. Even though this company has a big vision, it also has a lot of contemporary achievements and projects, including $14 billion annual sales. Patrick Millard’s Formatting Gaia blog has a good overview of Shizmu’s visionary projects.

In Japan, it is socially acceptable for even the largest firms to be inspired by radical futuristic visions. In the USA, it’s acceptable, but mostly behind closed doors, or publicly in places like Silicon Valley. It’s politically dicey in many places, because the party line is that true positive change can only be achieved by either 1) taxing corporations to pay for need X, or 2) deregulating corporations so they can produce enough wealth so that need X is eventually filled. However, more modern politicians (Obama) have come to realize that technology, not just political or social agitation, can produce lasting positive change. Meanwhile, many Democrat and Republican politico-bots fight it out forever on TV and …

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