Cybernetics & Transhumanism. Disclaimer: This is to inform you that I am heavily pro AI, Cybernetics and Transhumanism.
I will be attempting to provide a balanced view despite my bias.
AI, Cybernetics and Transhumanism: To many, these technologies seem far off and a little bit scary for them. I am here to argue the positive side of these technologies and try my best to articulate what issues the detractors have with the technology.
First off; AI, cybernetics and Transhumanism, are technologies that are already here, we have self-driving cars already nearing completion, we have drones that can deliver and perform a variety of tasks. We already have organs grown in animals which are used to replace a person’s failing organs, among a great many other technologies. Now, this is not to say they’re as sophisticated as we imagine when we say the names of those technologies, really, they are in their infancy.
But their existence provides hope for a greater future; fatal and debilitating diseases totally eradicated, replacement limbs, organs or bodies for everyone, life extension, bringing popular fictional species/races including fantastical and mythical beings into reality. Automated translation implants that enable you to speak and understand any language the ability to swap sex and eventually give birth (assuming the artificial womb improves and is miniaturized), direct access to the internet. AI children fork of your own mind, with non-destructive mind uploads. (which could give people who would normally never have kids the ability to have them).
Now I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the bad sides no matter how unlikely or silly it is.
The main fear that most of you know, the technological singularity. Where AI rewrites its own code and evolves beyond human understanding, causing humans to fear the AI who likely just wants to live. Humans start trying to kill it (becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy) and the AI decides humans are a threat to its survival rather than parental figures.
Body snatching, mind hacking and stealing of mind copies. With mind back up and downloading, it is theoretically possible to take over another person’s body be they cybernetic or just have an implant (internet/backup security is serious business guys) or have memories rewritten or erased. The book series that Altered Carbon is based on covers these possibilities as does Blade Runner.
Baseline human obsolescence, (this one is debatable as it’s pessimistic of human ability).
To compete on a level playing field, people will have to be augmented, or go, complete cyborg. Not to mention if the artificial womb doesn’t become a thing (for one reason or another) then this could include diminishing the human population, though I would like to point out that there are seventeen billion humans worldwide. I doubt all of them would go through with augmentation.
Despite life extension being a good thing, there is a component that is bad as well, you will outlive those who you are friends with or love ones who do not extend their lives.
Despite the risks, I personally think that these technologies are worth supporting.