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Jul 16, 2016

Beware the Rise of Gerontocracy: Some Hard Lessons for Transhumanism, Not Least from Brexit

Posted by in categories: aging, biological, ethics, futurism, governance, government, homo sapiens, human trajectories, life extension, neuroscience, policy, strategy, thought controlled, transhumanism

Transhumanists will know that the science fiction author Zoltan Istvan has unilaterally leveraged the movement into a political party contesting the 2016 US presidential election. To be sure, many transhumanists have contested Istvan’s own legitimacy, but there is no denying that he has generated enormous publicity for many key transhumanist ideas. Interestingly, his lead idea is that the state should do everything possible to uphold people’s right to live forever. Of course, he means to live forever in a healthy state, fit of mind and body. Istvan cleverly couches this policy as simply an extension of what voters already expect from medical research and welfare provision. And while he may be correct, the policy is fraught with hazards – especially if, as many transhumanists believe, we are on the verge of revealing the secrets to biological immortality.

In June, Istvan and I debated this matter at Brain Bar Budapest. Let me say, for the record, that I think that we are sufficiently close to this prospect that it is not too early to discuss its political and economic implications.

Two months before my encounter with Istvan, I was on a panel at the Edinburgh Science Festival with the great theorist of radical life extension Aubrey de Grey, where he declared that people who live indefinitely will seem like renovated vintage cars. Whatever else, he is suggesting that they would be frozen in time. He may actually be right about this. But is such a state desirable, given that throughout history radical change has been facilitated generational change? Specifically, two simple facts make the young open to doing things differently: The young have no memory of past practices working to anyone else’s benefit, and they have not had the time to invest in those practices to reap their benefits. Whatever good is to be found in the past is hearsay, as far as the young are concerned, which they are being asked to trust as they enter a world that they know is bound to change.

Questions have been already raised about whether tomorrow’s Methuselahs will wish to procreate at all, given the time available to them to realize dreams that in the past would have been transferred to their offspring. After all, as human life expectancy has increased 50% over the past century, the birth rate has correspondingly dropped. One can only imagine what will happen once ageing can be arrested, if not outright reversed!

Continue reading “Beware the Rise of Gerontocracy: Some Hard Lessons for Transhumanism, Not Least from Brexit” »

Jul 16, 2016

NASA and Made In Space are Building a Multi-Armed 3D Printing Space Robot Named Archinaut

Posted by in categories: 3D printing, robotics/AI, satellites


California’s space technology company Made In Space, currently preparing their second zero gravity 3D printer called the Additive Manufacturing Facility for the International Space Station, will be playing a key role in a NASA project that could completely revolutionize manufacturing in space. They will be partnering with Northrop Grumman and Oceaneering Space Systems on Archinaut, a 3D printer capable of working in the vacuum of space that will be equipped with a robotic arm. Archinaut is scheduled to be installed on an external space station pod and will be capable of in-orbit additive manufacturing, the fabrication and assembly of communications satellite reflectors or the repair on in-orbit structures and machinery.

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Jul 16, 2016

These 19 companies are racing to put driverless cars on the road by 2020

Posted by in categories: robotics/AI, transportation

Tesla, Google, Ford, and more are all investing heavily in driverless cars.

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Jul 16, 2016

Playing Pokemon Go Be Like

Posted by in category: futurism

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Jul 16, 2016

POKÉMON GO Is More Popular Than Porn Right Now

Posted by in categories: entertainment, internet

If you’ve been online at any point in the past week, you’ve probably come to realize that Pokémon Go is in the midst of a full-fledged internet takeover. It’s the top app in the iOS App Store, and just yesterday, it was revealed that people are using Pokémon Go more than they are social media apps like WhatsApp, Instagram, Facebook, and Snapchat.

But it turns out it was more loved than any of us realized, as by certain metrics, Pokémon Go is more popular than one of the main pillars of the internet: porn.

This weekend, video game industry analyst ZhugeEX discovered that according to Google Trends, people are searching for Pokémon Go more than they are for pornography. Take a look at the data for yourself here, or check out the screenshot below:

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Jul 15, 2016

Why Are Cancer Clusters So Hard To Prove?

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, government

True and sad. I personally have seen so many of these situations across many government facilities.

Communities across the United States are living in cancer clusters, but federal aid is hard to come by when the cause of the cancer cannot be easily proven.

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Jul 15, 2016

New images of a calcium-shuttling molecule that has been linked to aggressive cancer

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, physics

Scientists have captured new images of a calcium-shuttling molecule that has been linked to aggressive cancers. The three-dimensional structure could help researchers develop novel therapies and diagnostic tools for diseases that are caused by a malfunction in calcium adsorption.

Alexander Sobolevsky’s lab at Columbia University Medical Center is studying a family of proteins called “Transient receptor potential (TRP)” channels. These proteins line surfaces inside the body, such as the intestine, and form pores that help calcium cross a dense barrier of lipid and protein called the membrane to reach the interior of the cell.

Continue reading “New images of a calcium-shuttling molecule that has been linked to aggressive cancer” »

Jul 15, 2016

3D-Printed Gatling Gun Fires 48 Rubber Bands in Mere Seconds

Posted by in categories: 3D printing, biotech/medical, cyborgs

Matthew Davis’ Arcus is officially the most impressive thing we’ve ever seen come out of a 3D printer. Sure, cheap prosthetics and replacement body parts are important uses of the technology, but this spinning rubber band blaster is what finally makes us want to put a 3D printer on our desks.

Unlike most rubber band blasters that only fire a single shot every time you squeeze the trigger or require a drive mechanism to make them fully automatic, Davis’ Arcus uses the energy from the loaded elastics to spin the barrel and automatically fire shot after shot until it’s empty. Brilliant.

Continue reading “3D-Printed Gatling Gun Fires 48 Rubber Bands in Mere Seconds” »

Jul 15, 2016

The Rolls-Royce Phantom Now Has More Than 10,000 3D Printed Parts, BMW Looks to Expand Use Across Entire Line of Cars

Posted by in categories: 3D printing, transportation


With more than 25 years of using 3D printing technology, there probably isn’t a global automotive manufacturer that has pushed the limits of using additive manufacturing applications than the BMW Group. For most of the quarter-century that they have been using 3D printing, it was primarily used in the production of prototypes or one-off custom parts. However BMW began using 3D printing technology to produce end-use parts in series production back in 2012 with their new Rolls-Royce Phantom. Over the next several years, more than 10,000 3D printed components would end up being used to manufacture each Phantom coupe that came off the assembly line. The switch from traditionally manufactured parts to 3D printed parts was so successful that BMW began incorporating them into the new Rolls-Royce Dawn this year.

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Jul 15, 2016

The Un-Silencing Of The Genes

Posted by in category: genetics

Every wanted to reverse silent genes without mutations created? We now have a way.

Researchers have developed a technique that turns back on silenced, or switched-off, genes without causing unwanted mutations.

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