Bio Cybernetics referat

Bio Cybernetics:

Pacemakers and other subcutaneous implanted microprocessors have become common medical technologies, as have prosthetics and reconstructive surgery. If we could implant a cellular neural-net chip in the human brain, our consciousness could, theoretically, jack in and out of virtual realities, transmit and receive thoughts mind-to-mind, no 'virtual reality' mediation necessary.

Genetic Engineering is a fact of life today. The goal of the Human Genome Project--slated for completion early in the new millennium--is to map the entire human genetic code. When successfully completed, our knowledge of genetics will increase dramatically and relatively suddenly. We will know exactly what gene and combinations of genes produce which physiological, neurological, and psychological characteristics. Our genetic engineering skills and abilities should increase commensurately. Indeed, genetic engineering may become a branch of another exotechnology.

Nanotechnology would enable genetic engineers to manipulate single atoms to create structures (like molecules or genes) that can in turn be used to create even larger structures (like materials or beings). A Virtual Reality version of such genetic nano-engineering is inherent in Doyne Farmer's and Chris Langton's field: Artificial Life.

You can think of a computer in two ways: You can think of a computer as something that runs a program and calculates a number, or you can think of a computer as a kind of logical universe, a digital universe that you can make behave in many different ways. We believe we can put into computers sufficiently complex universes able to support processes that with respect to that universe, would have to be considered alive the goal is to abstract what it is to be alive from the material. (Brockman, p.5)

Genetic Nano-Engineering is also the great small hope for another exotech:

Cryonics is the low temperature preservation--freezing--of people who by today's standards are dead, with the expectation that improvements in medical, biological, neurological, mechanical, computer technology will allow the reversal of the errant process--the malfunctions--that caused the individual to die.

--Ralph Whelan,
Editor, Cryonics

With nanotechnology Future medicine will one day be able to build cells, tissue, and organs and to repair damaged tissue. This, obviously, would include brain tissue suffering from pre-existing disease and the anticipated effects of freezing. These sorts of advances in technology will enable patients to return to complete health from conditions that have traditionally been regarded as nonliving, and beyond hope, i.e., dead. (Regis, p.4)

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