Max More - Designing Death: Reframing and Refusing the End of Life (2011)

==Designing Death: Reframing and Refusing the End of Life==

It might appear that death is one of the very few aspects of our existence that are not open to design. However we shape the course of our lives – our activities, our relationships, our values – death is imposed on us all, dissolving all previous elements of design in our lives, aside from our legacy. Only very recently in human history has it become possible to truly design death, reframing what it means and perhaps refusing its permanence. The advent and continual improvement in cryopreservation (or cryonics) means that clinical death or legal death need not mean the death of the person. This speculative yet science-based practice allows us to choose whether to preserve our entire (broken down) body or just our brain. By leaving a record of our wishes for revival and repair, it may also allow us to choose and design how we want to come back: under what circumstances? In our original body? In a de-aged but otherwise identical body? In a radically enhanced body?


Transhumanism Meets Design - humanityplus.org/conferences/parsons/ humanityplus.org

On May 14-15 2011, Humanity+ International is partnered with Parsons The New School for Design in New York City to produce Transhumanism Meets Design. The conference was co-chaired by Ed Keller, Associate Dean of Distributed Learning at Parsons and Natasha Vita-More, Chairperson of Humanity+. The aim was to explore emerging technology, transdisciplinary design, culture and media theory, and biotech.The conference brings together futurists, cyberneticists, life extensionists, singularity advocates, A[G]I and robotics experts, human enhancement specialists, inventors, ethicists, philosophers, and theorists to meet with the creativity and rigorous scholarship of design at Parsons.Technological innovation permeates all aspects of society—from tiny water purification packets and portable LifeStraw filters, to GPS tracking devices, wearable Timex iPods and Gel-Kinsei high-tech running shoes. Because technology and society evolve together, it has become increasingly important to develop a greater understanding of how technology is shaping the course of our lives. We are faced with a need to continuously become more innovative in harnessing and controlling technology’s acceleration. Nevertheless, innovation develops in stages. When it speeds up, we are faced with an urge to become ever more resourceful. When it slows down there is an impending impatience to compete with the exuberance of China. There is no doubt that even the most conservative thinkers agree that we have stepped into an era of a massive change. The good news is that our human diversity continues to spawn inventiveness and novelty.

Humanity+ @ Parsons NYC explores how society can establish innovative thinking through design to harness this adventurous ride into the future where Transhumanism Meets Design!
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