New York-based knowledge-seeking forum The Reality Club of lately organized a dialogue session between Nobel laureate Behavioral Economist Daniel Kahneman and Historian Yuval Noah Harari. Kahneman engaged himself as an interviewee who incited the historian to share his ideas on the revolutionary changes now getting pace all over the world. The author of ‘Thinking Fast and Slow’ regarded magnetic for his contribution to psychology and behavioral economics. His book critically acclaimed by readers due to its thought-provocative commentaries on human behavioral patterns. It debunked what happened when desire and choice entice a human being to seek the right decision that could satisfy him and bring happiness in his life. In his fact-findings work, Kahneman signified Homo sapiens a bundle of combined ‘experiences’ that they’ve achieved by going through the long course of biological evolution and survival. He analyzed lucidly that how all these experiences have consumed in the organic meat-shell of Homo sapiens as a token for the next waking-reminder. The everlasting combat between desire and choice influenced Kahneman looking through the window that could tell something about human behavioral patterns and memory restoration process with providence.
… The future, maybe it waits for the people who are staying now at top of the class pyramid; who are very efficient like Kurzweil or Bill Gates to handle and make fruitful negotiation with the machine-based intelligence. Harari believes yonder class will play God’s role instead of mass or commons. So singularity is not newish but the moral of each impending singularity shifted over time; giving a chance to the fortunate, who is skillful and able to make it beneficial for him to conquering over death and whatever it. During his conversation with Kahneman, he repeats his statement once again.
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Daniel Kahneman’s evidential works help readers summate the conclusion that the battle amid desire and choice is not an episodic whiff of latter, nor anybody can consider it a consequent tethering of modernity, rather the prehistoric beginning was also alluring by this in a bit different context. Memory-preserver neuron cells how to make a deep impact on human happiness levels have appeared crucial in Kahneman’s investigation. The happiness level of any person who maintains social life instantly, his happiness depends on the procedural map as well;—to what extent he sensitizes his nerve cells and responding the events he has to be confronted now. Frequent preservation and deletion of memories in his meat-shell make it clear that how he participates as a survivor in the battlegrounded desire and choice. It, as an alternative mapping the ups-and-downs of his happiness level indeed.
This grounding work on happiness has driven Kahneman curious to make questions:—what is going on the meat-shell of a man in time of memory preservation which he received through his ancestral root or getting it from the repetition of daily life experiences? His curious intensity provoked readers to rethink the ultimate fate of human creation through deep insight. As he asked Harari on his opinion about death and the probability of human extinction in the future; the historian answered him by considering death as a technical transition of life. Harari believes death could be preventable shortly due to the displacement of human occupancy in civilization; which is now deploying them to accept the Datacentric Paradigm a new reality for them.
… Despite his denial of what Kurzweil pumping with striking lucidity for too many years, Harari unlikely sound similar when he ascribed his presumption on death and the next extinction of commons at the moment of his discussion with Daniel Kahneman. The extinction of commons here means common people, developing countries and state organizations, Nature-bond life and whatever it is,—all familiar elements would probably regarding useless to the future world due to the machine-based intelligence booming.
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Yuval Noah Harari has first gained attention for his wonderful book ‘Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind (2015)’, and the later extension of this book with futuristic aspect ‘Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow’ (2017). Harari’s self-revelation inducts a radical approach to follow the historical journey of human species. He moves his readers reading historical events by going out to the box, that is,—history is nothing but a sum of dead events and the speculative extraction of yonder events through historian’s eyes. His work assists readers to consider previous historical events as equally connective and responsible to guess the ultimate fate of today’s self-centered fetishism. Fetish as a term was happening throughout the epochs of human history; and as well, its gradual improvisation to attain the tickling title that Homo sapiens now stands on the mount-point of modern civilization. His lucid narrative, along with statistical ‘datum’, compelled his readers to weigh the Datacentric Paradigm an inevitable upheaval for the future world.
Harari ranked human beings the experiencer of Godcentric, Homocentric, and Datacentric paradigms, which they’ve experienced by casting them into the development phases of human intelligence to achieve robust progress and victory over all other creation of Nature. They were accustomed to Nature in the very dawn of civilization and were curiously driven to debunk the mystery of creation. Later the same species was educating them to achieve Godcentric Paradigm, so they can satisfy their curiosity about the designer of this Naturebond creation. Human species picked their second phase development near after the ending moment of Godcentrism. Homocentric Paradigm then appeared to fill the void. This paradigm leads them to stain their identity as a voyager among the newly invented technology. Homocentric Paradigm first gave them the freedom to prove their survival ability and as well as the best survivor in Nature. Needed to remember, this Homocentric shifting inevitably has done followed by the industrial-age as a replacement of agricultural revolution to its centric position. The same thing happened earlier when Godcentric Agricultural Revolution was started as a replacement of the nomadic-foraging stage.
Today, human civilization stands alone on the shore waiting for the third waves. We said earlier, Harari mentioned it to mean the Datacentric paradigm shift why nowadays is unavoidable for human beings. Each stage of the historical evolution exhibits intelligentsia; along with it, human species increased their capacity to preserve the diehard pressure of desire and choice in their memory-cells as well. The pressure they’ve taken to the shoulder indicates they were busy at that time educating themselves to achieve the utmost happiness; and, to feel the freedom of individuality underneath their nourished skin. The journey to the Homocentric Paradigm has not only appeared with separation to Naturebond life that they were habitual in the Godcentric time. The separation was also coming out with the ambitious hunger of getting freedom, happiness, and individuality of self at any cost. However, Harari looks intuitive to explain this historical division. Regulated historical facts with anthropological evidence make his texts insightful to his readers, critics, and philosophical twitchers as well.
Image Source: Daniel Kahneman: on the cognitive biases of entrepreneurs; Web: richardhughesjones.com
… Daniel Kahneman’s evidential works help readers summate the conclusion that the battle amid desire and choice is not an episodic whiff of latter, nor anybody can consider it a consequent tethering of modernity, rather the prehistoric beginning was also alluring by this in a bit different context. Memory-preserver neuron cells how to make a deep impact on human happiness levels have appeared crucial in Kahneman’s investigation.
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Harari’s conversation with Kahneman echoed his historical findings that how human species manipulate Nature in an excuse to achieve individuality and happiness. He put forward statistical references to establish his findings of the behavioral shifting of human civilization; that is,—the personification of Naturebond life then diverts human species to a different track. They missed the integrity of taking Holistic View that a ‘piece or segment’ is ultimately the part of a ‘whole’ and any partial piece or segment never sustains long if it failed attached itself to the whole. Lil bit reminder of Chief Seattle’s Letter may relevant here. It is said that the native leader once wrote a letter to the President of the United States addressing the burning land settlement issues against his tribe:
How can you buy or sell the sky, the warmth of the land? The idea is strange to us… If we do not own the freshness of the air and the sparkle of the water, how can you buy them?… So, when the Great Chief in Washington sends word that he wishes to buy our land, he asks much of us… The air is precious to the red man for all things share the same breath, the beast, the tree, the man, they all share the same breath. The white man does not seem to notice the air he breathes. Like a man dying for many days, he is numb to the stench. But if we sell you our land, you must remember that the air is precious to us, that the air shares its spirit with all the life it supports… This we know; the earth does not belong to man; man belongs to the earth. This we know. All things are connected like the blood which unites one family. All things are connected. [See: Chief Seattle’s Letter to the President of the United States: Ted Perry’s version from the movie ‘Home’]
Chief Seattle’s speech echoed the necessity of harmony between the partial and whole; and as well as, inevitable foresight of a man who might able to see the whole in a part; and that man must have the ability to connect any partial when he sees the whole in reverse. His letter, besides, makes the question urgent:—does extreme progress of civilization or development of knowledge which leads human civilization to Homocentric Paradigm, is bad? Does the increased capacity of diversifying life through knowledge, invention, and discovery is harmful? Answer in today’s context perhaps not easy when the third paradigm-shifting is knocking near. We at best could say:—knowledge is necessary to cut the root of ignorance and we should dig everything in Nature for the sake of adaptation; contrary, it’s our duty to consider the harmonious relation and coherence of all living things in the earthly surface with care. Yes, ‘consideration’ here is might be the only word that could help us pondering about the reconciled rhythm of life. The substance of ‘selfness’ doesn’t depend on isolation, rather it needs a harmonious ensemble between human beings and all other living creations.
Image Source: Yuval Noah Harari; Web: thehandbook.com
… The journey to the Homocentric Paradigm has not only appeared with separation to Naturebond life that they were habitual in the Godcentric time. The separation was also coming out with the ambitious hunger of getting freedom, happiness, and individuality of self at any cost. However, Harari looks intuitive to explain this historical division. Regulated historical facts with anthropological evidence make his texts insightful to his readers, critics, and philosophical twitchers as well.
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Yuval Harari’s historian-eyes looking bit pale in that context. He sounds passive to deal with the ethical dictum humanity reeling today. Instead, his historical narrative says something more about the Datacentric Paradigm where the emergence of machine-based intelligence has appeared to be fundamental than all other living existences of the planet. He thinks, being worried is not about the fear that today’s machine-based intelligence though yet unconscious but it will gain sensory power to become conscious very shortly, would replace human beings as Master Magician of the world. Moreover, concerning factors likely not depending on the futuristic question that,—what would be best to maintain relatively a tuneful balance between the conscious machine and the human being to avoid the risk that a mass extinction of Homo sapiens and all other living creatures from this planet in breathing near.
The historian of sapiens might be for this reason sounds pragmatic in his conversation with Kahneman. His voice recognized reality but showing his reluctance to sound dream-manic like Ray Kurzweil. Known to all, Kurzweil how much is extremist to his prediction that human species now stand on the revolutionary transformation of his biological origins. The historic Homo sapiens are not so far remote to the fifth epoch revolution; that means merging of human biological arrangements with nonbiological machine hardware is perhaps not fairy at all. Kurzweil mentioned his fairy dream over again that the new wave is breathing near. Human species is cramped to leave their biological genes and sluggish brain circuitry to merging them with the electrified hardware and fastest machine intelligence. Merging with electrified intelligence is unavoidable because of the slow computation power of human brain circuitry. Information processing and its exchanging ratio of a biological brain are extremely sluggish compared to the nonbiological brain. Despite its amazing innovative capacity of thinking, envision or consciousness, the human brain looks crawler if a goosey person even observes the current computation pace of nonbiological machine-brain for instance.
Today the biological interneuron network of the human brain calculates information in each connection at only the speed of 200 calculation per second; extremely slow compared to the machine-brain-network, whereas it can do the same task one million times faster than the human brain circuitry (NB: Kurzweil). Perhaps it sounds absurd today but Kurzweil is certain that nanobot that would not be larger than a blood cell can consciously think and generates a bunch of ideas or exchanging the bulk of information in each connection at lightspeed! The transformation of human biological organs to the electrified one is essential here for adjusting the rhythm which machine intelligence has going to achieve soon. Quantum Computer is not a dream at all. It now designed with the ability of computing information ten thousand years faster than the protein-based biological brain network.
Build multiple sets of algorithms by using the unpredictable spinning rate of electrons in a chained order is perhaps not a dream-hunting project today. Bit-based classical computer system where electrons spin certainly either in the bottom to produce ‘0’ or spin upper to produce ‘1’ binary combination for each transaction. Wherever quantum bits (qbits) algorithm follows quantum superposition patterns. An electron in superposition state spins either the bottom or upper or takes both paths at the same duration of its spinning moment. If computerists can handle this uncertain superposition state of electrons through orderly fashion, it would seem enough for saying goodbye to the bit-based classical computer. That means the information processing capacity of a quantum computer in per second (or even nanosecond) will leap triple to quadruple and even more by the next few years.
Image Source: Ray Kurzweil; Web: pinterest.com
… Kurzweil entitled him a ‘baby boomers’ in his idea-driven book, who believes death will no more exist if we change our inherited biological perception of experiencing death as an indomitable phenomenon for life.
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The rapid leap of modern technopace indicates human species have no alternative other than leaving their protein-based organic genes to gardening them electrified, so they can make a fair adaptation with the electrified strings. This adaptation will lead them to the sixth Kurzweil’s epoch where they could start a new life as a self-operated universal conscious being. Yonder transformation would appear as a death of the previously evolved biological Homo sapiens. The new species, literally they are not biological human beings if we compare them to the previous species, but they have historical connectivity with obsolete Homo sapiens. This new species will appear in the future as Transhuman along with all previous history of evolution in their brain network, and with emotion and intellects that they’ve got to their previous ancestor. Kurzweil’s fairy tales believe the transhuman will exist in the universe even with the capacity of restoring the ecology they’ve left behind just before the new transformation of human beings has appeared in the scene. We can look at what he said about the nature of upcoming Singularity, to realize the nonbiological leap of Homo sapiens at the near future:
The consequent effect of the Singularity according to Kurzweil’s presumption
… despite our profound limitations of thought, we do have sufficient powers of abstraction to make meaningful statements about the nature of life after the Singularity. Most important, the intelligence that will emerge will continue to represent human civilization, which is already a human-machine civilization. In other words, future machines will be human, even if they are not biological. This will be the next step in evolution, the next high-level paradigm shift, the next level of indirection. Most of the intelligence of our civilization will ultimately be nonbiological. By the end of this century, it will be trillions of trillions of times more powerful than human intelligence. [See: Kurzweil, The Singularity is Near, 2005]
His above-mentioned statement makes it clear that why Kurzweil is so reluctant to acknowledge death as the ultimate finisher of life. In his book ‘The singularity is near’, he expressed his denial to accept death is unpreventable; rather he agreed to take the challenges regarding death a disease that must be checked by genetic manipulation of human biological organs, which means the conversion of biological to nonbiological through techno inventories. Kurzweil entitled him a ‘baby boomers’ in his idea-driven book, who believes death will no more exist if we change our inherited biological perception of experiencing death as an indomitable phenomenon for life. He added several ‘followed’ like passages in his book:
Whereas some of my contemporaries may be satisfied to embrace aging gracefully as part of the cycle of life, that is not my view. It may be ‘natural,’ but I don’t see anything positive in losing my mental agility, sensory acuity, physical limberness, sexual desire, or any other human ability. I view disease and death at any age as a calamity, as problems to be overcome. …Bridge one involves aggressively applying the knowledge we now possess to dramatically slow down aging and reverse the most important disease processes, such as heart disease, cancer, type 2 diabetes, and stroke. You can, in effect, reprogram your biochemistry, for we have the knowledge today, if aggressively applied, to overcome our genetic heritage in the vast majority of cases. “It’s mostly in your genes” is only true if you take the usual passive attitude toward health and aging.
A related question: Is death desirable? The “inevitability” of death is deeply ingrained in human thinking. If death seems unavoidable, we have little choice but to rationalize it as necessary, even ennobling. The technology of the Singularity will provide practical and accessible means for humans to evolve into something greater, so we will no longer need to rationalize death as a primary means of giving meaning to life. [See: Kurzweil, The Singularity is Near, 2005]
Image Source: Ray Kurzweil’s Epoch of evolution; Courtesy: The Singularity is Near by Ray Kurzweil, 2005
… This entire Kurzweil’s context (with controversy) has appeared a bit reminder of what Bertrand Russell once made a commentary remark on the reality of death is inevitable or not. The logician believes death is a mental moral state of humans, just because that yet it’s an apparent reality and we’ve experienced it. If for any reason it stops, the mental moral state will turn to a new recognition; and as well as we have then obliged to treat death or mortality in light of yonder alternative reality.
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Kurzweil, who subjected himself for slowing down the aging process through clinical medication and reprogramming of genetic cells, his Gospel-looking futurism sound ludicrous to Steven Pinker and some extent to Harari and many others. However, the Transhumanist seems unstoppable in his proposal to erase death by the next few years. His existing battle against aging and death by exercising quantum and nanotechnology, robotics and artificial intelligence to rectify the genetic function and neuronal behavior of the brain has already inspired modern thinkers reconsidering death a biological fault line of this bodied existence. They are curious now to check the probability of immortality factors in light of Memory Upload, Human Replication or how to exist in the Virtual Reality perchance. That means someone’s death in sooner or later will perhaps arrive to make the statement final,—yes, he is no more in this fair-looking world but his replication is here to continue his existential truth as before. Kurzweil philosophized his futurist thinking wearing the cloak which he likes to call ‘Singularity or Singularism’:
- Existing knowledge can be aggressively applied to dramatically slow down aging processes so we can still be in vital health when the more radical life-extending therapies from biotechnology and nanotechnology become available.
- In this spirit, I am aggressively reprogramming my biochemistry, which is now altogether different than it would otherwise be.
- My body is temporary. Its particles turn over almost completely every month. Only the pattern of my body and brain have continuity.
- We should strive to improve these patterns by optimizing the health of our bodies and extending the reach of our minds. Ultimately, we will be able to vastly expand our mental faculties by merging with our technology.
- We need a body, but once we incorporate MNT fabrication into ourselves, we will be able to change our bodies at will.
- … emerging technologies will provide the means of providing and storing clean and renewable energy, removing toxins and pathogens from our bodies and the environment, and providing the knowledge and wealth to overcome hunger and poverty.
- A primary role of traditional religion is deathist rationalization—that is, rationalizing the tragedy of death as a good thing. Malcolm Muggeridge articulates the common view that “if it weren’t for death, life would be unbearable.” But the explosion of art, science, and other forms of knowledge that the Singularity will bring will make life more than bearable; it will make life truly meaningful. [See: Kurzweil, The singularity is near, 2005]
To overcome the mental barrier of thinking death inevitable Kurzweil prefers to check it by the gradual replacement of biological patterns from human body-chemistry. He proposed multiple actions for doing this task with care and efficiency; for instance:—DNA and Mitochondrial Mutations; Toxic cells that are usually not detrimental for cancer but produce useless fat in the body, so targeting them as ‘suicide genes’ and kill instantly by using nano medication to recover the healthy state if necessary; pushing Intra and Extracellular aggregators so they can combat against the toxication; prevent Cell Loss Atrophy by implanting ‘therapeutic cloning of our cells’; Therapeutic Cloning and Human Somatic-Cell Engineering; and obviously, using Nano-based Turing Machine to read the behavioral patterns of each so the effective medication and re-programming could get a fine-tune pace. Kurzweil quotes Biochemist Ron Weiss to make his dream true:—“Weiss points out that ‘once you have the ability to program cells, you don’t have to be constrained by what the cells know how to do already. You can program them to do new things, in new patterns.”
Ray Kurzweil’s viewpoint about Singularity
From my perspective, the Singularity has many faces. It represents the nearly vertical phase of exponential growth that occurs when the rate is so extreme that technology appears to be expanding at infinite speed. Of course, from a mathematical perspective, there is no discontinuity, no rupture, and the growth rates remain finite, although extraordinarily large. But from our currently limited framework, this imminent event appears to be an acute and abrupt break in the continuity of progress. I emphasize the word “currently” because one of the salient implications of the Singularity will be a change in the nature of our ability to understand. We will become vastly smarter as we merge with our technology. [See: Kurzweil, The singularity is near, 2005]
Kurzweil sounds desperate in his book to change the trendy viewpoint of what Nietzsche said once about the pain of existence:—“Man is a rope, fastened between animal and overman—a rope over an abyss.” He prefers alternative and said:
We can interpret Nietzsche to be pointing out that we have advanced beyond other animals while seeking to become something far greater…Our merger with our technology has aspects of a slippery slope, but one that slides up toward greater promise, not down into Nietzsche’s abyss. Some observers refer to this merger as creating a new “species.” But the whole idea of a species is a biological concept, and what we are doing is transcending biology. The transformation underlying the Singularity is not just another in a long line of steps in biological evolution. We are upending biological evolution altogether… Understanding the Singularity will alter our perspective on the significance of our past and the ramifications for our future. To truly understand it inherently changes one’s view of life in general and one’s own particular life. I regard someone who understands the Singularity and who has reflected on its implications for his or her own life as a “singularitarian.” [See: Kurzweil, The singularity is near, 2005]
This entire Kurzweil’s context (with controversy) has appeared a bit reminder of what Bertrand Russell once made a commentary remark on the reality of death is inevitable or not. The logician believes death is a mental moral state of humans, just because that yet it’s an apparent reality and we’ve experienced it. If for any reason it stops, the mental moral state will turn to a new recognition; and as well as we have then obliged to treat death or mortality in light of yonder alternative reality.
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Image Source: Hacking Darwin by Jamie Metz; Web: the economist.com
… The rapid leap of modern technopace indicates human species have no alternative other than leaving their protein-based organic genes to gardening them electrified, so they can make a fair adaptation with the electrified strings. This adaptation will lead them to the sixth Kurzweil’s epoch where they could start a new life as a self-operated universal conscious being. The new species, literally they are not biological human beings if we compare them to the previous species, but they have historical connectivity with obsolete Homo sapiens.
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Anyway, Harari is not worried about what Kurzweil pumping often. He thinks it is too early for saying anything about the future or its impact on evolutionary biology because we humans have yet carried organic sensors, so how we can think or guess anything about which a nonbiological existence could do often? Still being as a biologically-evolved organic creation, it may tough to guess what would be happened next if a man wakes up to the sleep and by sudden discover that he is metamorphosed entirely to an electrified man! Harar added:—the behavior and thinking patterns of the Transhuman would fairly different from the biological man, who could consider him at best an insect, as Franz Kafka once depicted the nightmare in his novel.
Kurzweil’s futuristic gospel in that context perhaps fairly remote to the Kafkaesque. It sounds remote to Harari and anybody who yet even enjoying his life happily by living underneath the protein and insulin based geneshell. Despite his denial of what Kurzweil pumping with striking lucidity for too many years, Harari unlikely sound similar when he ascribed his presumption on death and the next extinction of commons at the moment of his discussion with Daniel Kahneman. The extinction of commons here means common people, developing countries and state organizations, Nature-bond life and whatever it is,—all familiar elements would probably regarding useless to the future world due to the machine-based intelligence booming. He said:
There are a zillion things that the taxi driver can do and the self-driving car cannot. But the problem is that from a purely economic perspective, we don’t need all the zillion things that the taxi driver can do. I only need him to take me from point A to point B as quickly and as cheaply as possible. And this is something a self-driving car can do better or will be able to do better very quickly…Once you know how to produce bodies and brains and minds, cheap labor in Africa or South Asia or wherever, it simply counts for nothing. So in geopolitical terms, we might see a repeat of the 19th century, but in a much larger scale.
I don’t have a solution, and the biggest question maybe in economics and politics of the coming decades will be what to do with all these useless people. I don’t think we have an economic model for that. My best guess, which is just a guess, is that food will not be a problem. With that kind of technology, you will be able to produce food to feed everybody. The problem is more boredom, and what to do with people, and how will they find some sense of meaning in life when they are basically meaningless, worthless. [See: Death Is Optional: A Conversation: Yuval Noah Harari, Daniel Kahneman]
Harari even thinks Ray Kurzweil’s ‘singularity’ is not a new thing if we follow the historical paradigm shift of Homo sapiens to the upcoming Homo Deus. Kurzweil’s philosophical and technical approach of conquering aging and death may sound new; but what he said about the impending victory over death by means of the mechanical transformation of human species to a nonbiological one, which alternatively declares the extinction of humans, it resonates the same occurrence happened throughout the historical epochs of human evolution. Myriad commons were extinct on each paradigm shift of the foraging to agriculture and agriculture to the industrial revolution. The same thing might be going to happen in the Datacentric epoch of civilization.
Harari reminds, when the paradigm shift from Godcentric to Homocentric was appeared inevitable it neutralized God’s role then. He (the God) still be omnipotent for today’s believers but lost his supreme position as an ‘interloper’ of human life. Human beings took over the manipulator role (instead of God) when Homocentric Paradigm has appeared inevitable for them. In Datacentric Paradigm, where AI, Nano Technology, Robotics, VR, and all other Biocentric tools claimed its victory over human beings, this victory will repeat the same power-shifting cycle that was playing its pivotal rule in the past over and again.
… the personification of Naturebond life then diverts human species to a different track. They missed the integrity of taking Holistic View that a ‘piece or segment’ is ultimately the part of a ‘whole’ and any partial piece or segment never sustains long if it failed attached itself to the whole.
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Harari made his disagreement clear to prefacing it ‘extinction’; rather he likes to predict Datacentric Paradigm will just kick off Homo sapiens to his central position. The future, maybe it waits for the people who are staying now at top of the class pyramid; who are very efficient like Kurzweil or Bill Gates to handle and make fruitful negotiation with the machine-based intelligence. Harari believes yonder class will play God’s role instead of mass or commons. So singularity is not newish but the moral of each impending singularity shifted over time; giving a chance to the fortunate, who is skillful and able to make it beneficial for him to conquering over death and whatever it. During his conversation with Kahneman, he repeats his statement once again:
We don’t think like that today. People never die because the Angel of Death comes, they die because their heart stops pumping, or because an artery is clogged, or because cancerous cells are spreading in the liver or somewhere. These are all technical problems, and in essence, they should have some technical solutions. And this way of thinking is now becoming very dominant in scientific circles, and also among the ultra-rich who have come to understand that, wait a minute, something is happening here. For the first time in history, if I’m rich enough, maybe I don’t have to die. [See: Death Is Optional: A Conversation: Yuval Noah Harari, Daniel Kahneman]
What Harari said has already tuned controversy among the scholarly circles. Steven Pinker did not hesitate to mention his disagreement in the discussion part of The Reality Club session. He phrased Harari in a short paragraph to commenting:
I suspect that death will never be conquered (though our lifespans will continue to increase, at least for a while). Any cost-free longevity gene or easily tunable molecular pathway would have been low-hanging fruit for natural selection long ago. Senescence is baked into most of our genome because of the logic of evolution: since there’s a nonzero probability at any moment that an organism will die in an unpreventable accident, making genes for longevity moot, selection tends to sacrifice longevity for performance at every level of organization. This means we’d have to know how to tinker with thousands of genes or molecular pathways, each a tiny (and noisy) effect on longevity, to make the leap to immortality. The low-hanging fruit is in fact at the other end of the lifespan and income scale. We’ve made massive global progress in reducing maternal and infant mortality and premature death, but we’re not seeing a cohort of billionaire centagenarians.
It remains to be seen how far artificial intelligence and robotics will penetrate into the workforce. (Driving a car is technologically far easier than unloading a dishwasher, running an errand, or changing a baby.) Given the tradeoffs and impediments in every other area of technological development, the best guess is: much farther than it has so far, but not nearly as to render humans obsolete. [See: Death Is Optional: A Conversation: Yuval Noah Harari, Daniel Kahneman]
… Despite its amazing innovative capacity of thinking, envision or consciousness, the human brain looks crawler if a goosey person even observes the current computation pace of nonbiological machine-brain for instance.
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Harari, likewise Kurzweil reminds Pinker to think about the modern perception of death which is intentional to consider ‘aging and death’ a technical fault-line of human body genome; which it thinks could fairly rectifiable by implanting the nanotech tools; and, which human civilization is near to invent so far. He articulated this visionary prediction in his recently published book ‘Homo Dues: A Brief History of Tomorrow’. As well as, repeatedly mentioned his views in series lectures and interview sessions. Conversation with Kahneman as follows the same rotation where he repeats:
The idea that “Death is optional” does not mean that we are close to overcoming it and living forever. The gospel of Kurzweil notwithstanding, it is very unlikely that humans will defeat death in the next 50 years or so. However, our attitude to death has already been revolutionized. Death has been relocated from the metaphysical realm to the technical realm…Throughout history, death was seen as a metaphysical phenomenon. We die because God decreed it, or the Cosmos, or Mother Nature. People accordingly believed that death could be defeated only by some grand metaphysical gesture such as Christ’s Second Coming. Yet lately we have come to redefine death as a technical problem. A very complicated problem, no doubt, but still only a technical problem. And science believes that every technical problem has some technical solution. We don’t need to wait for God, or Jesus Christ, or the Muslim Mahdi in order to overcome death. A couple of geeks in a lab could do it. If traditionally death was the specialty of priests and theologians, now the engineers are taking over. [See: Death Is Optional: A Conversation: Yuval Noah Harari, Daniel Kahneman]
Harari’s statement sounds fairly reversal to the spiritual philosophism of death. The traditional viewpoint negotiates death as a transition of this mortal existence to the immortal one. Spiritual cognition admits the ending of human biology a temporal bubbling of bodied existence to accomplish the next reincarnation in an eternal world or transmutation of this mortal biological frame to an unexplainable nonbiological form. In spiritual science, transmigration of bodied existence to something in an unchanged state could be the only reality to understand the origin of what reality is. Theoretically, philosophism of achieving immortal state through transmutation is perhaps not wrong. Mortality doesn’t mean an end if we consider the energy reservation thermodynamics a matter of fact here. Energy might be the only substance that can change from one state to another but could never die after its depreciation.
However, the hotpan debate still going on the intellectual surface. It indicates: futuristic neo scientific revolution of medication now serious to find the preventive measure that could break off the inevitable death biology of beings by sudden or due to the laggard of cell division on aging. The debate and controversy are ongoing, which maybe helps us to rethink the whole notion in light of new philosophy and ethical dictums.
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