Documenting the Coming Singularity

Friday, June 29, 2007

BBC - Time Video: How to Live Forever

I posted about this program a few days ago but couldn't find it online. Someone did and posted the link in a comment, so here it is. It really is amazing.

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Anonymous said...

I don't think human immortality is possible, because the human body is constructed in ways that would make it impossible to live ultra long, and still be viable in terms that people would consider desireable. The human body heals, and, in healing, regenerates flesh. All flesh has the property of altering when certain things happen to it. Over time, tissue sags, on accout of gravity, and because the cells change individually also. In order to have a really good body, which would be one of the criteria for immortality being desireable, it would have to be unchangeable. That would mean that it would have to be perfect, or you would really dislike its imperfection and always be trying to perfect it. Because human only live for a hundred years or so, it's not an unacceptable problem (for most people) for a person to have an inperfect body, because you know it won't be forever. But if it was for ever, then it would really, really, need to be perfect, and that would mean that it would have to also be unchanging, because if it changed, it wouldn't stay perfect, and that would mean that you couldn't improve. Believe me, the first thing of any consequence anyone would find out, if they lived for a thousand years, would be that -no matter how perfect they may have thought their body was when they were merely a hundred or so- there really is something about their body they would like to change. Medicine or surgery wouldn't be good for this because that would depend on some person's individual acquisition of skill, and, if your body is really perfect, all you can be sure of is that your surgeon's skill would be fallible. Sooner or later some doctor's scalpel would just not cut the flesh in exactly the right way, and then you would really want to be mortal again.