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Aug 8, 2017

The Growing World of Libertarian Transhumanism

Posted by in categories: cyborgs, life extension, robotics/AI, transhumanism

Transhumanists are curiosity addicts. If it’s new, different, untouched, or even despised, we’re probably interested in it. If it involves a revolution or a possible paradigm shift in human experience, you have our full attention. We are obsessed with the mysteries of existence, and we spend our time using the scientific method to explore anything we can find about the evolving universe and our tiny place in it.

Obsessive curiosity is a strange bedfellow. It stems from a profound sense of wanting something better in life—of not being satisfied. It makes one search, ponder, and strive for just about everything and anything that might improve existence. In the 21st century, that leads one right into transhumanism. That’s where I’ve landed right now: A journalist and activist in the transhumanist movement. I’m also currently a Libertarian candidate for California Governor. I advocate for science and tech-themed policies that give everyone the opportunity to live indefinitely in perfect health and freedom.

Politics aside, transhumanism is the international movement of using science and technology to radically change the human being and experience. Its primary goal is to deliver and embrace a utopian techno-optimistic world—a world that consists of biohackers, cyborgists, roboticists, life extension advocates, cryonicists, Singularitarians, and other science-devoted people.

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Aug 8, 2017

US drones to the Philippines?; Spy planes over the US; AI tool to detect fake video; US bases get OK to down unknown drones; and just a bit more…

Posted by in categories: drones, government, military, robotics/AI, surveillance

Are U.S. killer drones headed to the Philippines? There are already U.S. special operators fighting ISIS there. There could soon be American drones carrying out airstrikes there, too, according to a plan under consideration inside the Pentagon, NBC News reported Monday. “The authority to strike ISIS targets as part of collective self-defense could be granted as part of an official military operation that may be named as early as Tuesday, said the officials. The strikes would likely be conducted by armed drones.”

SecState Rex Tillerson gave the pitch some momentum Monday in Manila when he said the U.S. was providing the Philippine government “some recent transfers of a couple of Cessnas and a couple of UAVs (drones) to allow to them to have better information with which to conduct the fight down there.”

And in a bid to cut off concerns over working even more closely with alleged human rights abuser Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, Tillerson said that’s pretty much just not an issue right now: “I see no conflict at all in our helping them with that situation and our views of other human rights concerns we have with respect to how they carry out their counternarcotics activities.” More from NBC News, here.

Continue reading “US drones to the Philippines?; Spy planes over the US; AI tool to detect fake video; US bases get OK to down unknown drones; and just a bit more…” »

Aug 8, 2017

AI Will Make Fake News Video — and Fight It As Well

Posted by in categories: engineering, finance, information science, robotics/AI

Just weeks after one research team appeared to put words in a leader’s mouth, here comes a new tool that can check questionable video for a pulse.

A recent demonstration showing how easy it is to spoof video of a world leader recently made headlines, foretelling a future where robot-created videos cause political and financial havoc. But now comes word of an antidote. On Monday, a group of computer scientists from Carnegie Mellon University’s Software Engineering Institute published new research showing how algorithms can tell whether the person on-screen has a human heartbeat. The technique will help future intelligence analysts, journalists, or just scared television viewers detect the difference between spoofed video and the real thing.

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Aug 8, 2017

LEAF President Keith Comito asks whether the CRISPR gene editing system will help cure aging in the near term

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, life extension

Dr. Oliver Medvedik, Dr. Aubrey de Grey, and Dr. Alexandra Stolzing discuss.

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Aug 8, 2017

SoftBank is plowing billions into tech companies: Here’s a list of investments so far

Posted by in category: futurism

Japanese tech giant SoftBank has been plowing billions of dollars into tech companies, both public and privately held, in the last year — so much so that one investor has questioned whether SoftBank is fueling a new valuation bubble in tech.

Some of these investments are coming from the gigantic SoftBank Vision Fund, which includes funds from SoftBank as well as Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund and tech companies like Apple, Foxconn, Qualcomm and Sharp. The fund announced in May that it had closed $93 billion in capital, and hopes to raise $100 billion by the end of the year.

But SoftBank has also announced many investments that don’t involve the Vision Fund. According to reports and sources familiar, some of these investments will be offered to the Vision Fund, while others will not.

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Aug 7, 2017

Scientists have successfully carried out the first-known attempt at creating genetically modified human embryos in the U.S.

Posted by in categories: futurism, genetics

Are we near a future of “designer babies”?


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Aug 7, 2017

On 2 August, the first antiproton beam coming from CERN’s Antiproton Decelerator (AD) circulated in the Extra Low ENergy Antiproton (ELENA) ring

Posted by in category: particle physics

Image © CERN

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Aug 7, 2017

This fast robot will make Adidas shirts cheaper — and kill hundreds of jobs

Posted by in categories: employment, robotics/AI

A Chinese garment company is partnering with American robotics to use Sewbots in manufacturing. How many people will this new innovation put out of work?

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Aug 7, 2017

10 predictions about the AI revolution

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

One of the world’s foremost authorities on artificial intelligence lays out how he thinks society will change over the next 30 years as the technology becomes commonplace.

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Aug 7, 2017

Is the universe conscious?

Posted by in category: space

Some of the world’s most renowned scientists are questioning whether the cosmos has an inner life similar to our own.

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