Is Immortality Possible?

Discussion in 'Biology & Genetics' started by Hypercane, Jul 22, 2004.

  1. spuriousmonkey Banned Banned

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    And what are you going to do with this information?
     
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  3. ElectricFetus Sanity going, going, gone Valued Senior Member

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    Have the computer emulate the person's mind.
     
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  5. spuriousmonkey Banned Banned

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    Obviously, but how?
     
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  7. ElectricFetus Sanity going, going, gone Valued Senior Member

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    What do you mean how? Does a human brain not think? Its functions are all limited to the physical world (at least all evidence points to that) thus it could be emulated. All you need is a computer capable of the same calculating abilities of the human brain.
     
  8. spuriousmonkey Banned Banned

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    How are you going to make an emulation of a brain based on its architecture. That is not really how a brain works or is it?
     
  9. Starthane Xyzth returns occasionally... Valued Senior Member

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    The architecture need not be identical - it would simply require a neural-network design of sufficient complexity to contain all that data, and manipulate it in patterns as diverse as our various mental processes. (Not yet achievable, of course!)

    Come to think of it: the detail of a human brain on the molecular level might not actually be necessary. Just the ability to translate the information it stores into a digital format which computers could store and process.

    I mean, if every axon or dendrite stores the equivalent of one binary digit, the contents of the average brain might still be manageable by a technically possible supercomputer (as WellCookedFetus said). It would certainly be many orders of magnitude smaller than all the ionic gradient data I previously referred to.
     
  10. John Connellan Valued Senior Member

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    Thats not extracting your conscioussness! Thats creating consciousness which resembles your own! U do not move over to the other body nor do u feel anything which happens to the other body!
     
  11. duendy Registered Senior Member

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    we have to come out of specializational discourse when we speak of 'immortality.

    for me it is a boy-thang-idea. a one-up on the 'big-bad-Dragon', ie., NATURE. with all 'her' death, and nasty things us boys are better than.
    so you see in myth--patriarchal myth, this desire for immortality. NOW it is still with us in the arena of post-modernist scientifical theory

    but ask yourself a serious question. do you ever get BORED. do you not think you wouldn't be VERY bored if you WERE immortal. and is death dispensable?
     
  12. ElectricFetus Sanity going, going, gone Valued Senior Member

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    If your dead already who to say the emulation is not you?

    you won't ever get bored because you can reprogram your mind.
     
  13. spuriousmonkey Banned Banned

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    I didn't know that the mind was just the physical architecture of dendrites and axons.

    [add a dose of skepticism]
     
  14. eM0912 Infectious Microbe Registered Senior Member

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    i think the real question here, is who would want to live forever? i know i'd get bored after a while.
     
  15. JIMC Registered Member

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    According to a great book, "The Selfish Gene", everything that happens to an organism is for the propagation of the gene. When we get older, we do not repair and manufacture cells as well as a younger individual, and therefore were likely to carry some defective DNA. That's why we are considerd useless by our genes after we are no longer a prime vessel for their distribution.
     
  16. JIMC Registered Member

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    According to a great book, "The Selfish Gene", everything that happens to an organism is for the propagation of the gene. When we get older, we do not repair and manufacture cells as well as a younger individual, and therefore were likely to carry some defective DNA. That's why we are considerd useless by our genes after we are no longer a prime vessel for their distribution.
     
  17. John Connellan Valued Senior Member

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    I think the main problem gerontologists have is understanding why this has to be the case. WHY does the body not repair itself just as well later in life?
     
  18. Starthane Xyzth returns occasionally... Valued Senior Member

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    Isn't it supposed to be because of cumulative genetic errors from the continuous renewal of cells (one reason we have evolved masses of non-coding intron DNA - to act as a buffer for the inevitable mistakes)? And/or the fact that teleomeres seem to degrade with repeated fissioning, making the replication of the genome less efficient. Those ideas were bounced around earlier in this thread: anyone have any more?
     
  19. spuriousmonkey Banned Banned

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    The same would be valid then for sperm and eggs.
     
  20. John Connellan Valued Senior Member

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    I don't think so. I am sure there are DNA repairing enzymes out there. Aging seems to only begin after the age of about 20 or so. It seems genetically programmed into us.

    Its definitely not this!
     
  21. Brandon9000 Registered Senior Member

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    The genetically programmed idea has been abandoned and is not discussed in current literature.

    Now aging is believed to be caused by a number of different sources of degradation and error, of which a prime contributor is reactions with free radicals.

    The many sophisticated internal mechanisms we possess for combatting these aging mechanisms, e.g. DNA polymerase, extend our lives to their present value, from the much shorter period that we would otherwise survive.
     
  22. Hypercane Sustained Winds at Mach One Registered Senior Member

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    So then telomeres have no effect on the aging process, creation of new blood cells, etc?
     
  23. spuriousmonkey Banned Banned

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    food for thought


    There must be some kind of genetic aging, since all current cells are progeny of a single ancestral cell and hence all cells alive nowadays are of the same ancient age.

    The genetic program might be a reverse one though. One of protection instead of active aging.
     

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