As many of you will know, my work with Unlimited often involves collaborating not only with incredible artists but also with scientists working at the leading edge of their areas of research. So in the course of my work I get to meet and spend time with some extremely interesting people. And as a way of sharing some of the extraordinary conversations I have, I’ve started recording some of them as podcasts.
The first episode of the “Unlimited Science+Art” podcast is a conversation I had last week with Anders Sandberg. I first met Anders in early 2015 when Unlimited was commissioned by the Science Museum to make a performance installation about Human Enhancement and Biotechnologies. As part of my research for a new show on similar themes that we’re developing in collaboration with Rash Dash, I went to visit Anders in his office at the Future of Humanity institute at the University of Oxford where his research centres on the management of low-probability high-impact risks, estimating the capabilities of future technologies.
These are the questions I asked him:
1m25s How do you describe yourself and your work?
2m16s How does what you do apply to the work at the Future of Humanity Institute?
3m40s What is “Human enhancement” ?
5m What is “Transhumanism” ?
7m01s What is “the human condition” – what is it to be human?
13m30s we start to get into the ETHICS of “morphological freedom”
15m50s We’ve been enhancing ourselves for millennia, so haven’t we always been Transhuman?
21m25s Isn’t everything just information?
22m40s Why would we want to combat or end ageing?
24m55s How old should we be ‘naturally’?
27m45s all descriptions I’ve read about transhumanism are about how we enhance the physical, intellectual and physiological capacities of humans… but what about enhancing the EMOTIONAL capacities we’d need in this new state?
34m30s What are the current human enhancements that we are beginning to deal with right now?
38m20s What are the enhancements in the next ten years that are going to arrive and are really exciting?
44m30s in what timeframe are these sorts of implants going to arrive?
48m Where is the money coming from for this? Who is funding your research?
52m What is the realistic timeline for these sorts of enhancements happening?
56m20s How do we, normal people, affect and get involved with this conversation about how these things will be developed and how we use them?