[Video Link] PostHuman: An Introduction to Transhumanism

post by Joshua_Blaine · 2013-11-15T02:04:56.294Z · LW · GW · Legacy · 12 comments


I think this is a nice introduction to Transhumanism, inspired by the style of many well known Youtube educators. Given how much LessWrong likes these ideas, I thought it was worth sharing.

The group also has a Kickstarter here to fund an entire series of videos of this kind. I think they deserve to be backed, and LW can probably influence the video creators in a useful/helpful way.


Comments sorted by top scores.

comment by knb · 2013-11-15T06:30:58.870Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

It's a really well-made video. However, they make the claim that the doubling period for Moore's Law is shrinking, which I think is false.

Replies from: Mestroyer, timtyler, Joshua_Blaine, somervta, None
comment by Mestroyer · 2013-11-15T07:50:52.894Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

I also don't like that argument (even when presented correctly) because it ignores software and assumes you can brute-force everything.

comment by timtyler · 2013-11-15T11:31:16.318Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

Shane Legg prepared this graph.

It was enough to convince him that there was some super-exponential synergy:

comment by Joshua_Blaine · 2013-11-15T15:03:51.909Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

I dont disagree with the idea of an A.I. Intelligence explosion, but I do think their argument is the wrong one. It is a fairly common idea though, especially from semi-laypeople, so I'm not surprised to have seen it in their video.

Everything else in the video seemed roughly accurate, though.

comment by somervta · 2013-11-15T11:41:32.815Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

I'm pretty sure that was Kurzweil's claim originally. Can't remember if they attribute it to him in the video or make it themselves, though.

comment by [deleted] · 2013-11-16T16:34:28.038Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

However, they make the claim that the doubling period for Moore's Law is shrinking, which I think is false.

It's demonstrably true, widely documented, and well understood. Don't be spreading misinformation.

comment by knb · 2013-11-15T08:44:35.517Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

I also wonder if the extreme "abolitionist" position (with regard to suffering) should be listed along anti-aging and intelligence enhancement. Abolitionism seems like it might be off-putting even to people who might support the first two planks.

Replies from: davidpearce, somervta, ChristianKl
comment by davidpearce · 2014-01-14T12:27:16.320Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

"Health is a state of complete [sic] physical, mental and social well-being": the World Health Organization definition of health. Knb, I don't doubt that sometimes you're right. But Is phasing out the biology of involuntary suffering really too "extreme" - any more than radical life-extension or radical intelligence-amplification? When talking to anyone new to transhumanism, I try also to make the most compelling case I can for radical superlongevity and extreme superintelligence - biological, Kurzweilian and MIRI conceptions alike. Yet for a large minority of people - stretching from Buddhists to wholly secular victims of chronic depression and chronic pain disorders - dealing with suffering in one guise or another is the central issue. Recall how for hundreds of millions of people in the world today, time hangs heavy - and the prospect of intelligence-amplification without improved subjective well-being leaves them cold. So your worry cuts both ways.

Anyhow, IMO the makers of the BIOPS video have done a fantastic job. Kudos. I gather future episodes of the series will tackle different conceptions of posthuman superintelligence - not least from the MIRI perspective.

comment by somervta · 2013-11-15T11:42:13.736Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

It... was, wasn't it? Or did I mistake the bit about David Pearce and the elimination of suffering?

Replies from: knb
comment by knb · 2013-11-15T20:24:36.910Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

It was. I'm saying I don't think it should have been.

comment by ChristianKl · 2013-11-15T11:30:51.800Z · LW(p) · GW(p)


comment by somervta · 2013-11-15T06:29:18.468Z · LW(p) · GW(p)

Thanks for posting this - I had seen it elsewhere, but forgot to watch it, and I never knew about the Kickstarter