Human Genetic Engineering – from Transhumanism to Nanotechnology

Welcome to a site all about transhumanism, genetic engineering and human modification – and how it could change the world. Here you can find out what transhumanism is and how it may affect your life, so if you were looking for a place to find an explanation of this “transhumanism” thing, you’ve certainly come to the right place. If you got here by looking for something else, like “genetics” or “robots”, that’s fine too. You’ll find plenty of cool science and technology articles that are interesting in their own right, without the whole transhumanism umbrella. In other words, any science and tech geeks will feel right at home here.

So What’s with the Transhumanism Thing?

Transhumanism is a philosophical movement that is strongly related to humanism. It has specific beliefs about what the fate of humanity should be and how technology will help us shape and achieve that future. I’ve put together a small number of core topic articles to get you orientated to the transhumanism movement and some of the most important concepts. You can tackle them in any order you want to, but I suggest you do them in this order.

First, have a look at “What is transhumanism?”, which I think most people would agree is a good place to start.

Right after that one, it’s a good idea to read “Common misconceptions about transhumanists”.

If you get those out of the way, you may be interested to read “Understanding transhuman rights”, which will give you a great idea of what it would be like living in a transhuman society.

Finally, the last two core topics are about concepts that are not subscribed to by all transhumanists, but are so popular in the movement that they deserve to be put here. The first is an article titled “What is the singularity” and the second is titled “What are post-scarcity economics?”.

If you get through all the core topics, you’ll know pretty much all you need in order to feel grounded in this interesting philosophical movement.
With that out of the way, let me explain how the rest of the site works.

How This Site Works

Transhumanism covers a wide range of ideas, fields, and technologies. So to make it all easier I’ve tried to narrow them down to a few key areas. Obviously, many of these technologies overlap with each other, but wherever possible I’ve tried to sort them neatly.

There are eight topic sections on this site besides the core topics we’ve already talked about, so let’s look at each of these sections in alphabetical order.

Computer Technology

From your smartphone to the computers that run almost every aspect of our lives, these amazing machines are possibly the greatest invention of the 20th century. Computers are, however, devices with far more potential than video games and traffic control. Advanced computer tech will be a major enabler of the key developments that transhumanists predict.

If you think computers had a big impact in the previous century, you ain’t seen nothing yet.

Cybernetics

Thanks to some great Sci-Fi movies, plenty of people already have a pretty good idea of what cybernetics entails. Think of Robocop or the Terminator, except perhaps less about shooting things and more about making life better for people. Yes, cybernetic technology is about the fusion of human and machine, but it’s also about more than that and comes from an intellectual tradition that’s pretty interesting in its own right.

Genetics

Genes are the programming language of life itself. Every creature on Earth has their plan written in the same language because we’re all descended from the same ancestors. It’s an incredible story of our origins and nature, but it’s even more astounding that we’re beginning to rewrite that book of life ourselves. An understanding of what makes us human at the most basic level is key in the mission to become transhuman.

Life Extension

The oldest humans reach a ripe age of about 120, and the average is heading towards 80 years before a person calls it quits. By the time you get there, you’re frail and no longer think or perform as well as you did when you were in your 20s or 30s. It all seems like it’s just part of life, but transhumanists treat aging and death as another medical and scientific problem to be solved.

Medical Revolutions

We can fix them; we have the technology! Yes, that’s a reference to the TV series The Bionic Man, but medical technology and science really has come along in leaps and bounds. Many diseases or injuries that would have been fatal when you were a child are now curable. That’s just the pace of change within our own lifetimes; from artificial hearts to lab-grown tissues, soon there will be a fix for every ill.

Nanotechnology

Nanotechnology is the closest scientific equivalent to magic. Mastery of the very tiny inner space of our universe will allow us humans to do things that we can’t even imagine today. That doesn’t mean we can’t have fun trying! Nanotechnology is also one of the most controversial tech areas, and many experts are incredibly worried about how it could all go wrong. In any case, from nanomaterials to nanorobotics it’s becoming ever more clear that the biggest thing in our future is very, very small indeed.

Robotics

Who likes to work anyway? The future is filled with automated machinery that will do everything from cleaning your home to actually building it in the first place. Robots come in all shapes and sizes. Some are meant to look like us and interact with us every day. Others are built for one very special job and are shaped accordingly.

Some people are seriously worried that the robots will rise up one day and wipe humanity out. Others worry about the (almost inevitable) replacement of human workers with robots. While all this worrying is going on, robots are getting smarter and more useful with every passing day, and they hold the promise of a human race relieved of drudgery.

Space

Most people would agree that Earth is a pretty great place. At least, we’ve managed to make it fairly safe and livable over the millennia that we’ve been here. Despite how great it may be, the fact is that 99.9% (rounded) of all the stuff in our universe is not here on Earth. So it makes sense to want to get out there and explore all this other stuff. Basically, I’m saying that space is full of all the cool stuff there is.

On a more serious note, if humans want to continue existing and not become extinct, as 99% of all life on earth over time has done, it needs to get its collective bum off Earth and spread those eggs into other baskets. I apologize for the metaphorical overload.

Keeping Up to Date

You’ll find a number of articles in each section, either explaining some fundamental stuff about it or collecting interesting stories and research that relates to each of those areas. Over time, I’ll be updating these sections with new developments and any other interesting happenings that relate to them. Perhaps I’ll even add whole new sections.

I’ve also made the decision to include a “reviews” section on my site. This is where I’ll put reviews of all sorts of things that relate to transhumanist interests. This includes all the different media that connect to the idea of transhumanism and, of course, tech products that already exist that are of interest to us. I’ll also be expanding this part of the site as I encounter new products that fit the bill, so check back!

Moving on Up

Transhumanism is, in my opinion, one of the most enlightened and hopeful thought movements that exist today. It’s something that can give us hope and let us look forward to a bright and interesting future here in our little corner of the universe. My hope is that this site will add to the chorus of voices spreading the (trans)humanistic message of positivity and optimism far and wide. We humans have a special privilege and opportunity that is probably very rare. We get to take control of our own destiny and define what our future evolution will look like. The only question is whether we’ll embrace that chance or let it slip by.

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| Computer Technology | No Comments

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The Difference Between Strong and Weak AI

The idea of AI, or “artificial intelligence”, is one that’s pretty central to transhumanism. You may even hear of something referred to as a machine “superintelligence”, usually in relation to…

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“Virtual Reality” is a technology whose time has finally come. But what is virtual reality? Proper definitions of the terms are sometimes very technical, but here I will define virtual…

Computer Technology

From your smartphone to the computers that run almost every aspect of our lives, these amazing machines are possibly the greatest invention of the 20th century. Computers are, however, devices with far more potential than video games and traffic control. Advanced computer tech will be a major enabler of the key developments that transhumanists predict.

If you think computers had a big impact in the previous century, you ain’t seen nothing yet.

Cybernetics

Thanks to some great Sci-Fi movies, plenty of people already have a pretty good idea of what cybernetics entails. Think of Robocop or the Terminator, except perhaps less about shooting things and more about making life better for people. Yes, cybernetic technology is about the fusion of human and machine, but it’s also about more than that and comes from an intellectual tradition that’s pretty interesting in its own right.

View All Posts
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The Three Most Amazing Prosthetic Arms and Hands in the World

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Retinal Implants and Bionic Eyes to the Rescue

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The Age of Home Genetic Engineering

When you think of the genetic engineering that’s happening in the world today, you probably imagine it happening at a university or a big biotechnology firm – people in white…

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Genetically Modified Humans and Embryos, a Soon to Be Reality

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Genetics

Genes are the programming language of life itself. Every creature on Earth has their plan written in the same language because we’re all descended from the same ancestors. It’s an incredible story of our origins and nature, but it’s even more astounding that we’re beginning to rewrite that book of life ourselves. An understanding of what makes us human at the most basic level is key in the mission to become transhuman.

Life Extension

The oldest humans reach a ripe age of about 120, and the average is heading towards 80 years before a person calls it quits. By the time you get there, you’re frail and no longer think or perform as well as you did when you were in your 20s or 30s. It all seems like it’s just part of life, but transhumanists treat aging and death as another medical and scientific problem to be solved.

View All Posts
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Should You Freeze Yourself with Cryogenics?

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An Anti-Aging Drug Diet?

There are many different ideas about how to help us stay younger and live longer. Some of them are pretty radical in terms of what we need to do to…

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How Artificial Exo-Wombs Could Change Everything

If it weren’t for the womb, not a single person on the planet today would exist. That’s not an exaggeration – that’s a cold, hard fact. The natural reproduction process…

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The Transplant Revolution: Organs for Everyone!

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Medical Revolutions

We can fix them; we have the technology! Yes, that’s a reference to the TV series The Bionic Man, but medical technology and science really has come along in leaps and bounds. Many diseases or injuries that would have been fatal when you were a child are now curable. That’s just the pace of change within our own lifetimes; from artificial hearts to lab-grown tissues, soon there will be a fix for every ill.

Nanotechnology

Nanotechnology is the closest scientific equivalent to magic. Mastery of the very tiny inner space of our universe will allow us humans to do things that we can’t even imagine today. That doesn’t mean we can’t have fun trying! Nanotechnology is also one of the most controversial tech areas, and many experts are incredibly worried about how it could all go wrong. In any case, from nanomaterials to nanorobotics it’s becoming ever more clear that the biggest thing in our future is very, very small indeed.

View All Posts
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The Weird Idea of Utility Fog

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Small is the New Big: Nanobots Rule the Future

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3D Printing Will Change Everything

Star Trek predicted a lot of cool stuff that we take for granted today. Decades before they became a reality we got to see tablet computers, voice recognition, and automated…

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Who likes to work anyway? The future is filled with automated machinery that will do everything from cleaning your home to actually building it in the first place. Robots come in all shapes and sizes. Some are meant to look like us and interact with us every day. Others are built for one very special job and are shaped accordingly.

Some people are seriously worried that the robots will rise up one day and wipe humanity out. Others worry about the (almost inevitable) replacement of human workers with robots. While all this worrying is going on, robots are getting smarter and more useful with every passing day, and they hold the promise of a human race relieved of drudgery.

Space

Most people would agree that Earth is a pretty great place. At least, we’ve managed to make it fairly safe and livable over the millennia that we’ve been here. Despite how great it may be, the fact is that 99.9% (rounded) of all the stuff in our universe is not here on Earth. So it makes sense to want to get out there and explore all this other stuff. Basically, I’m saying that space is full of all the cool stuff there is.

On a more serious note, if humans want to continue existing and not become extinct, as 99% of all life on earth over time has done, it needs to get its collective bum off Earth and spread those eggs into other baskets. I apologize for the metaphorical overload.

View All Posts
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Can We Go Faster Than Light?

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What is the Singularity?

In transhumanism circles you’ll often hear talk about something called the “Singularity”. The way people talk about it, you’d think it was a religious term like “Ragnarok” or “the Rapture”….

Transhumanism
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Common Misconceptions About Transhumanism

Transhumanism and idea systems that predate it have been around for a long time, but it’s only now that this thought movement is getting more mainstream attention. Mainly, this is…

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May 27, 2017

Understanding Transhuman Rights

Since transhumanism is a positive philosophy that outlines one way that human beings could conduct their lives and social systems, it also means that transhumanists have some very specific ideas…

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Economics can be a dry and boring subject, but in the end it boils down to one thing – stuff, and who gets to have it. Humans needs stuff. They…

Transhumanism

There’s a lot of really cool stuff on this website. We have robots, powered prosthetics, genetic engineering, and so much more. Googling for any of this stuff could have brought you here, but that’s not actually what this site is about.

Instead, it’s about a philosophy and an overarching idea about what it means to be human, and our destiny as a species. It re-imagines what it means to be human and how we can plot our way into the future. It’s a philosophy that holds at its core the belief that human beings can transcend their limitations to become something more than they are.