Issue #302

This week - how to defend yourself against Spot robots; there is a 50% chance that we will reach longevity escape velocity by 2036; how could we bring someone back to life; and more!


More Than A Human

"There is a 50% chance that we will reach longevity escape velocity by 2036" - Aubrey de Grey

Aubrey de Grey, one of the leaders in anti-ageing research, stated in a recent tweet there is a 50% chance that by 2036 we will reach Methuselarity - a point in which rejuvenation therapies will be able to reverse ageing.

► Meditations on the intersection of humanity and technology (9:25)

Documentary photographer Olivia Arthur has been exploring a new frontier: the evolution of the blurring line between humanity and technology. In this talk, she shows her work documenting the remarkable ways humans have merged with machines - from bionics and motorized limbs to synthetic muscles and strikingly realistic robots - and offers wisdom on the complexity, adaptability and resilience of the human body.

► Issac Artur - Resurrection (27:28)

Perhaps the most sought after technology is not the ability to extend life, but to restore it once it is gone. Isaac Arthur examines the technological options that may be available to us in the future.

Artificial Intelligence

The Next Generation of AI

The world isn’t a better place because computers can play Go, states this article, but because what we learned in creating systems like AlphaZero or GPT-3 is being used in new, creative and unrelated fields, like applying natural language processing techniques to analyse genomes or to create new genes.

Robotics

Israel's autonomous 'robo-snipers' and suicide drones raise ethical dilemma

Israel is heavily investing in autonomous weapons, like automated sniper and machine gun turrets, drones and battlefield robots. These weapons, seen as a force multiplier, could allow small Israeli defence forces to do more with less but they come with their own moral and ethical dilemmas.

RoboCup 2021

RoboCup is going global and remote this year. If you are a crafty engineer who wants to take part in competing in robot soccer, rescue mission or home or industrial applications, you can sign up and test your skills. The details about the registration process can be found here.

How to Defeat Boston Dynamics’ Spot Robot in 1:1 Combat

Leaving this here just in case you will have to defend yourself from a hostile Spot robot.

A New York Lawmaker Wants to Ban Police Use of Armed Robots

New York City councilmember Ben Kallos says he “watched in horror” last month when city police responded to a hostage situation in the Bronx using Boston Dynamics Spot, a remotely operated robotic dog equipped with surveillance cameras. Now Kallos is proposing what may be the nation’s first law banning police from owning or operating robots armed with weapons.

Events

We have always been cyborgs [10.04.2021, 4PM London time]

In this London Futurists webinar, leading philosopher Stefan Lorentz Sorgner will be sharing key ideas from his forthcoming new book "We Have Always Been Cyborgs". Stefan explores the critical issues that link transhumanism with digitalisation, gene technologies and ethics. He examines the history and meaning of transhumanism, and asks bold questions about human perfection, cyborgs, genetically enhanced entities, and uploaded minds.

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