Zombie Rights
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Zombie Rights

Andrew Dun provides an interesting discussion on the rights of sentient entities. Drawing inspiration from quantum complementarity, defends a complementary notion of ontological dualism, countering zombie hypotheses. Sans zombie concerns, ethical discussions should therefore focus on assessing consciousness purely in terms of the physical-functional properties of any putatively conscious entity. Below is the video of…

Extending Life is Not Enough
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Extending Life is Not Enough

Dr Randal Koene covers the motivation for human technological augmentation and reasons to go beyond biological life extension. Competition is an inescapable occurrence in the animate and even in the inanimate universe. To give our minds the flexibility to transfer and to operate in different substrates bestows upon our species the most important competitive advantage.”…

Sam Harris on AI Implications -The Ruben Report
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Sam Harris on AI Implications -The Ruben Report

A transcription of Sam Harris’ discussion on the Implications of Strong AI during recent appearance on the Ruben Report. Sam contrasts narrow AI with strong AI, AI Safety, the possibility of rapid AI self-improvement, the idea of AI superintelligence may seem alien to us, and he also brings up the idea that it is important…

Strategies for Engineered Negligible Senescence with Aubrey de Grey
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Strategies for Engineered Negligible Senescence with Aubrey de Grey

Projects at SENS Foundation Sens Foundation has a lot of projects that were working on all at the same time.  There are 3 projects that we are working on at our research center in California and then there are a whole bunch of others that we support at university laboratories around the world – mostly…

The Quantified Self with Anders Sandberg (in under 2 mins)
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The Quantified Self with Anders Sandberg (in under 2 mins)

The Quantified Self movement is usefully encouraging loads of people to record metrics about their personal health – the resulting big data will be useful to mine in doing research on how food and lifestyle impact health. There are also some ethical issues around privacy if personal metrics are used inappropriately. Here is an interview…

AI: The Story So Far – Stuart Russell
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AI: The Story So Far – Stuart Russell

Awesome to have Stuart Russell discussing AI Safety – a very important topic. Too long have people been associating the idea of AI safety issues with Terminator – unfortunately the human condition seems such that people often don’t give themselves permission to take seriously non-mainstream ideas unless they see a tip of the hat from…

Suffering, and Progress in Ethics – Peter Singer
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Suffering, and Progress in Ethics – Peter Singer

Suffering is generally bad – Peter Singer (who is a Hedonistic Utilitarian), and most Effective Altruists would agree with this. Though in addressing the need for suffering today Peter acknowledges that, as we are presently constituted, suffering is useful as a warning sign (e.g. against further injury). But what about the future? What if we…

A Non-trivial Pursuit of Happiness – Paradise Engineering with David Pearce :-)
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A Non-trivial Pursuit of Happiness – Paradise Engineering with David Pearce :-)

It is non-trivial for a couple of reasons:a) the pursuit of this vision of happiness is not trivial – it is likely to be a very challenging endeavor (though totally worthy of the effort)b) the aim is to achieve non-trivial modes of happiness, kinds of information-sensitive gradients of bliss (as opposed to being stuck in…

Review of Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow by Yuval Noah Harari – Steve Fuller
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Review of Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow by Yuval Noah Harari – Steve Fuller

My sociology of knowledge students read Yuval Harari’s bestselling first book, Sapiens, to think about the right frame of reference for understanding the overall trajectory of the human condition. Homo Deus follows the example of Sapiens, using contemporary events to launch into what nowadays is called ‘big history’ but has been also called ‘deep history’…

NASA Provides Free Access to All Published Research
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NASA Provides Free Access to All Published Research

NASA recently announced that it is providing free open access to all its published research – “Public access to NASA-funded research data now is just a click away, with the launch of a new agency public access portal. The creation of the NASA-Funded Research Results portal on NASA.gov reflects the agency’s ongoing commitment to providing…