Man AND Machine?

Going off of my last post I wanted to pose a question: At what point is a human no longer considered a human? I don’t exactly seek to delve deep into the answers, but rather as some questions and share my opinions. For the sake of argument, let us assume that technology has progressed to the point we can practically replace the entire human body with robotics. Forgive me while I get a little of the rails…

If we are to remove a man’s arm and replace it with an artificial one certainly he is still human. He maintains his humanity, as he still possesses the rest of his body. He is largely organic and biological. But what if this process is taken further? What if the process of artificially “augmenting” to a human continues? Is it when science can replace greater than 50% of a person? These are interesting questions, especially with the rapid advancement of technology it may have to be a question many may ask.

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What would be the point of losing our humanity? Progress of course! If we could eliminate horrible diseases like cancer, we could run faster, think smarter, live longer, isn’t it worth it? The future of human body augmentation is the next step in our evolution, one that we can make for ourselves. If the tech is there in the future, we will be able to play God. there would be no limit but our own creativity and imagination.

What will the future hold?

Get “Back to the Future”

I’m going to switch things up from my usual musical ramblings today for a post that’s more… philosophical.

I think we as humans are obsessed with the future. We are obsessed with our tomorrows, both individually, and as a society at large. It’s easy to wonder about our future, and one of my favorite daydreams involves what technology will be like in the future. In the last 100 years alone humanity has developed tech that has changed how we live, and I would arguably say that computer technology has made the largest impact on mankind.

This video by YouTuber CGP Grey really kickstarted my imagination on the topic. It’s 15 minutes long and is definitely worth a look. The video talks about how our lives will become increasingly automated, and it’s all happening soon. Like, in our lifetimes soon.

Scary isn’t it?! So what is next? Where is technology going to push us going forward? I think the next logical step for us is to begin to allow ourselves to be changed by technology physically. The tech isn’t as advanced as it could be yet, but I think looking forward we will begin to see increasingly advanced artificial limbs and even organs.

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100 years ago artificial limbs like this weren’t even realistically conceivable.

I believe that this is going to revolutionize our world as we know it. Maybe this all sounds like the ramblings of a madman, but if we continue on the pathway of human body augmentation our society will be forever changed. It’s hard – for me at least – to think of something that is more simultaneously scary and exciting. Imagine a world free of disease, no more disabilities, and potentially longer lifespans!

But this potential advancement comes at a potentially huge social diversion. These body modifications could one day give birth to another class of person, someone who is increasingly more machine than man. The advantages that this person would have over the more “basic” human would be practically limitless. And of course, why would it be affordable? It would be a luxury that only the wealthy could afford. I think that’s a scary reality, and we need to consider the social ramifications such body augmentation can have.

Just a thought.

 

 

Vinyl Value

Last year I had one thing on my 2014 Christmas list, and that was a record player. I can’t remember why exactly I wanted one, but I guess it was just to me at the time a cool thing to have. Maybe it helped bolster my music geek credibility to those who had no idea of what vinyl really was, or maybe I just really wanted to listen to some of my Dad’s old records collecting dust in my childhood home.

Regardless of the reason I wanted a record player, I sure am glad that I got one a year later. What started off as a vintage collection has a year later blossomed into a full-on obsession… maybe even an addiction. I’ve managed to fill an entire milk crate of vinyl records both old and new, of all sorts of genres, and from many different artists. If you looked through my collections you would say that my musical taste is, if anything, eclectic. Ranging from alternative, classic rock, experimental jazz, hip-hop, to electronic. I’m pretty certain my year one collection has something that would impress any fellow music aficionado.

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The best place in Hamilton to pick up new and old records. Cheapies Records and Tapes!

So, why do I love vinyl? A lot of people say that vinyl sounds better than more digital mediums, and sometimes it does. But the real reason I love picking up a fresh new record from the store is the excitement of picking up a piece of art from my local record store and having that physical piece of art to keep for myself. I love the artwork of my favourite albums, the little bonuses most records have with them (posters, stickers, etc.). If I had to explain it simply, it’s like having a physical copy of a book. Even though there are plenty of digital ways to read books there is something special about having a good old-fashioned physical book to touch, feel, and display on your bookshelf. That’s how I would compare vinyl and mp3’s.

With a record you are stuck with your purchase. You better love every single song on the album, or at the very least be willing to open your ears up to the possibility of loving the odd tracks that sit between the singles released to mainstream music listeners. The vinyl record is an experience; and one at that I’m glad I’ve had.