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Friday, June 7, 2013

Avatars

The other day I read an article in the New York Times I can't forget. It is about a Russian billionaire who sponsors a scientific project called 2045 Initiative. In short, Dmitry Itskov, 32, envisions the mass production of lifelike, low-cost avatars that can be uploaded with the contents of a human brain, complete with all the particulars of consciousness and personality. Your avatar would be digital copy of your mind in a nonbiological carrier, a version of a fully sentient person that could live for hundreds or thousands of years. This project seems far-fetched and unfeasible, but I wouldn't say it's unrealistic. And so I fantasize that the children of my grandchildren will have to cope with a growing population of living dead - immortal personalities walking around as avatars. A nightmare.

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