Issue #152

This week – why we should enhance humans; why we should not live forever; the biggest drone show in history; clean-meat biocommunity in Japan; China is scanning workers’ brains; and more!


More than a human

Chasing Captain America: why superhumans may not be that far away

In this interview, Vox speaks with E. Paul Zehr who wrote a book about enhancing humans and creating superhumans. The questions revolve around how, what and why should do it and give some idea how an average person might react to the things that are discussed in H+ community every day.

 

I Went to The Body-Hacking Conference and All I Got Was This Cyborg Implant

Here is a comic showing how BDYHX was like for someone outside the grinders and biohackers community.

 

This Famous Aging Researcher Doesn’t Want Us to Live Forever

The potential for undying tyrants or tyrannical bodies is one reason Leonard Hayflick, one of the world’s preeminent experts on aging (he was a founder of the Council of the National Institute on Aging), is against slowing down or eliminating the aging process.

 

3D Printing Electronics Direct to Body

Researchers from University of Minnesota have modified an inexpensive 3D printer to make it capable to print simple electronic circuits directly on human body. They presented a simple LED circuit but it shows a new way for advanced body modifications.

 

Aaron Traywick, The CEO Who Injected Himself With An Experimental Herpes Therapy, Was Found Dead In A Sensory Deprivation Tank

Aaron Traywick was a biohacker and CEO of Ascendance Biomedical. He got famous for publicly testing on himself never before tested gene therapies, like injecting herpes treatment on stage at a conference.

 

With brain-scanning hats, China signals it has no interest in workers’ privacy

The South China Morning Post reports that Chinese employees working in factories, in the military, and on trains are being given hats and helmets equipped to monitor their brain waves for sudden changes in their emotional state. The Post says the government-sponsored project scans data from the caps for signs of depression, anxiety, or rage using AI, and the businesses adjust work accordingly.

 

Artificial Intelligence

Google Cofounder Sergey Brin Warns of AI’s Dark Side

In the annual Founders’ Letter, Sergey Brin from Google expounds at length on a recent boom in development in AI that he describes as a “renaissance.” He then goes into explaining how machine learning is changing the world (with Google’s help) but also points out some problems AI has caused.

 

We’re living in the Last Era Before Artificial General Intelligence

“Our understanding of the implications of AGI and even machine intelligence on the planet are poor. Is it because this has never happend in recorded history, and represents such a paradigm shift, or could there be another reason? We can barely imagine that our prime directive in the universe might not be to simply grow, explore and make babies and exploit all within our path. And, we certainly can’t imagine a world where intelligent machines aren’t simply our slaves, tools and algorithms designed to make our lives more pleasurable and convenient.”

 

Robotics

Drone light show in China breaks world record

1,374 illuminated dancing drones have achieved the Guinness World Record for the most unmanned aerial vehicles in simultaneous flight. The stunning display in Xi’an, China, saw the drones take part in a 13-minute flight, spread over a kilometre.

 

How to Interact With Robots Without Embarrassing Yourself

In the coming years, our interactions with robots will grow. More sophisticated robots will roll out to work around us and they need to learn and understand human behaviour. This is what human-robot interaction, or HRI, labs are studying.

 

Tennibot: The World’s First Robotic Tennis Ball Collector

This autonomous robot drives around the tennis court and collects the balls so you don’t have to do it. Will we see this robot at Wimbledon or Roland Garros? Maybe. Who knows.

 

What Happens When Your Bomb-Defusing Robot Becomes a Weapon

This article goes back to the Dallas shooting in 2016 where for the police force used a robot designed to defuse bombs to kill the shooter and explores from there how we got to this point and what the future holds for autonomous killer robots.

 

Biotechnology

At-Home CRISPR Kit Will Diagnose You Better Than WebMD

Mammoth Biosciences wants to combine CRISPR with self-diagnosing to create a kit that will tell you what disease is currently attacking your body.

 

Biology Will Be the Next Great Computing Platform

Bill Gates said that if he was a teenager now, instead of computers he would hack biology. Wired introduces three companies which took Gates’ advice and are treating biology like software.

 

The Japanese Biohacker Clean-Meat Community

Meet Yuki Hanyu who created the growing ‘clean meat’ community in Japan. Hanyu, who holds a PhD in chemistry, is more than a mere enthusiast on the subject. With the Shojinmeat Project, he connects roughly 30 DIY citizen scientists across Japan — often schoolkids — who all grow artificial meat in their own homes. Apart from offering each other advice and exchanging experience, the group frequently post articles as well as pictures of their work, sharing both their insights and their enthusiasm with others.