This might be the creepiest thing I have ever read.
Many engineers, including me, think that some time around 2050, we will be able to make very high quality links between the brains and machines. To such an extent that it will thereafter be possible (albeit expensive for some years) to arrange that most of your mind – your thinking, memories, even sensations and emotions, could reside mainly in the machine world…The main aim of this research area is to design electronic solutions to immortality.
Just in case those links between brains and machines seem completely beyond possibility, you might want to check out the research that may soon lead to mind-controlled prosthetics. Those prosthetics would be amazing. But immortality? Trying to keep your thoughts, memories, and emotions alive forever?
Perhaps you think it would be useful to tap into the memories of generations of people. As a history nerd, I can see the appeal. But do we really need to tap into the emotions and damage forever? I’m glad that the generational memory of the pogroms and holocaust are not fresh wounds for me like they are for previous generations. It is hard enough to get over the damage.
I get not wanting to die. I get not wanting to lose the people you love. But the fact that nothing lasts forever is the most hopeful fact we have in life and, painful as loss and death are, we should embrace it.
Think about what the alternative would be. If the good things lasted forever, the bad things would have to also. Forever wars. Forever genocides. Forever tyrants. Do you want Hitler or Lloyd Blankfein or Charles Manson to live forever?
Things need to end to make room for new things. People need to move on to make room for new people. You never know what wonderful thing you may be missing out on by trying to hold on to things that need to be let go of. Besides, what kind of megalomaniac would actually think they should live forever?