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"Few observers have truly internalized the implications of the fact that the rate of change itself is accelerating." - Ray Kurzweil, founder Singularity University
As biohacking, Artificial Intelligence, and other technologies continue to push the boundaries of what we once thought possible, one question needs to be answered sooner rather later...
Where are we going with this?
At what point will we become Terminator-like Cyborgs with abilities beyond our current human potential?
And what will that mean for the human race?
Unless you're a technology lover who is closely following the rapid advancement of AI, these questions may seem a little far-fetched, but as you'll see, this is a conversation many of the world's leading innovators are already debating.
Meet Hannes Sjob, the Epicenter, and Singularity University
The Epicenter played host to the conference and I saw firsthand that this co-working space puts most other co-working places to shame - the architecture, layout, amenities (special biohacked lighting, an on-site cafeteria featuring upgraded and "bulletproof" foods) and oh yeah... many members are implanted with chips to gain access to the building.
^^ The Epicenter ^^
Aside from his day job at Epicenter, Hannes is on the faculty at Singularity University whose website describes their mission as "a catalyst for global change, we help others leverage rapidly accelerating technologies—including artificial intelligence, nanotechnology, robotics, and digital biology—in innovative ways to unlock solutions that can positively impact billions of lives."
I agree with Singularity founder Ray Kurzweil, who says this conversation is necessary "because few observers have truly internalized the implications of the fact that the rate of change itself is accelerating."
Machine Learning is already changing the way we live and AI is closer than we think - see Facebook's recent experiments.
After seeing the innovation and possibilities firsthand in Sweden, I've taken Kurzweil's advice and started asking questions about where this is headed.
Our guest on today's OPP, Hannes Sjob, is the perfect person to answer some of our pressing questions. For the sake of debate, I'll take the side of skeptics while Hannes play the role of optimistic tech-lover.
In my skeptical eye, we're opting into those futuristic sci-fi movie scenarios depicted in Gattica, Total Recall, Robo Cop...think about the Big Data we're voluntarily providing through Facebook, and our choice to wear fitness trackers that transmit real-time health information to .... do you even know who has access to your location, respiratory rate, and activity levels??
Hannes, ever the optimist takes a much less doom and gloom approach to this scenario - envisioning a future (2-5 years away he says) in which implants the size of a grain of rice can provide real-time biofeedback that would encourage lifestyle changes to improve health from a preventative perspective AND be able to diagnose and offer solutions that would effective de-centralize medical care and significantly improve global health care.
There is a lot to think about as we continue to push the boundaries with technology. Certainly the intersection of humanity and technology has already begun to happen...where it goes from here will be determined by how thoughtful we are about what future we curate for ourselves.
Listen the entire interview with Hannes here & let us know your thoughts on the future of technology and humanity:
Links and Resources
Kevin Kelly's What Technology Wants
Hanne's recommendation for DNA tracking and hacking: AthGene