Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Visions of the future

According to an article posted on CNN, complete brain dumps will be possible by the year 2050. Our civilization's technology is growing at such a fantastic rate that even the poor would be able to afford such a thing shortly thereafter. The article also goes on to explain other possible uses of future technology including virtual business meetings and 'concious' computers capable of feeling human emotions.

I'm all for advanced technology and integration, but there must be some sort of limit. One possibility cited by the article is an airplane that would be afraid of crashing... great, just what we need: Bob from Tripping the Rift or HAL 9000 from 2001: A Space Odyssey. One of the reasons I enjoy using computers is because they are fast and emotionless tools that get the job done quickly and accurately. Introduce human emotions and the "quickly and accurately" benefits diminish proportionately. Granted, humans are capable of fantastic feats in dire situations because of these emotions (often in combination with adrenaline). And love? It is by far one of the most powerful emotions... can you imagine a computer stalker that can track your every move and action through various networks? It almost sounds like a futuristic horror movie to me.

Stan Lee one said "With great power comes great responsibility." The possibilities of these next-generation technologies sound fantastic, but I believe that emotional computers and immortality were never meant to be.


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