Robin Hanson found a skeptical Bryan Caplan when the former explained his positions on cryonics to the latter. (“The more I furrowed my brow, the more earnestly he spoke.”) Caplan said:
What disturbed me was when I realized how low he set his threshold for [cryonics] success. Robin didnâ€™t care about biological survival. He didnâ€™t need his brain implanted in a cloned body. He just wanted his neurons preserved well enough to â€œupload himselfâ€ into a computer. To my mind, it was ridiculously easy to prove that â€œuploading yourselfâ€ isnâ€™t life extension. â€œAn upload is merely a simulation. It wouldnâ€™t be you,â€ I remarked. â€¦
â€œSuppose we uploaded you while you were still alive. Are you saying that if someone blew your biological head off with a shotgun, youâ€™d still be alive?!â€ Robin didnâ€™t even blink: â€œIâ€™d say that I just got smaller.â€ â€¦ Iâ€™d like to think that Robinâ€™s an outlier among cryonics advocates, but in my experience, heâ€™s perfectly typical. Fascination with technology crowds out not just philosophy of mind, but common sense.
Hanson responded with …