Elias presents ... a worm!    Thoughts on family, philosophy,
and technology


Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Shameless spectacular speculation

I read an article about Aubrey de Gray, who is convinced that the problem of aging can and will be solved in the next 30 to 100 years. It's actually quite an intriguing theory on many fronts, though I think he is, as a typical software engineer, being overly optimistic in his time estimates.

Still, the future for our grandchildren looks bright in a lot of ways:

1) They may have the opportunity to live and avoid frailty for hundreds or even thousands of years. Reasoning: when my grandchildren are 50, the year will be about 2085, by which time scientists and businesses et al are likely to have extended life by a few decades. And the more that people see how life extension is possible, the more inspired they will be to invest heavily into further life-extending R&D projects, so that the extension of life by several more decades will come soon enough. This cascading effect will only grow with time, such that it's conceivable that while one generation (our children?) will hardly be able to live 100 years, the next generation will figure out how to give itself an average lifespan of 1000 years or more.

2) In the world of my grandchildren, there will be robots and really-smart computers everywhere getting all sorts of stuff done that we can't even conceive of now. (No doubt many of them will be working on keeping us alive and healthy.)

3) In 100 years, the basics of Objectivism (roughly, that there is one reality that is perceived unfailingly by our senses and can be understood and conceptualized by volitional adherance to objective principles, and in such a reality happiness is attainable by pursuing one's objective values according to rational virtues in a social system which defends individual rights by implementing a free market) will be common knowledge. Though no doubt religion and the like will linger among dark pockets of humanity.

4) Given #1, the population on the planet will grow dramatically. This is a good thing, because more people means a bigger economy, more geniuses, more choices for romantic partner, etc. In short, peoples is good. Sure, at a certain point space becomes an issue, but we are very, very far from that point, and anyone who disagrees should drive through Wyoming sometime.

5) Given all of the above, the rate of wealth production on the planet is going to go ballistic.

However, there is bad news for my grandchildren as well, for just yesterday we were playing Bach's Brandenburg Concertos for Eli, when what do I spy but my wife doing "the robot". I don't know what ghastly gene would cause such behavior, but I fear it may be passed on to our descendants.


  • At 3:37 PM , Blogger Pevil said...

    At least she wasn't doing the worm! I think you are in for a life full of events like that B-rad.

  • At 8:20 PM , Blogger Amy said...

    At least your husband doesn't wear 80's kick back goofy muscle shirts, certainly a style that will never be "in" again.

    I bet she looked hot, as hot as the sun!

    One thing about living forever that will suck eventually is that people won't be able to have kids - unless it turns out to be similar to AI! How sad, don't you think?


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