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MIND and MAN: Getting Mental with Giulio Prisco

Understanding the mind is a long-awaited project.  After centuries of scientific and philosophical investigation, debate and analysis, the human mind is still an enigma.  The idealists continue to argue one theory and the scientific realists argue another.  (Not to mention radical constructivists arousing critical realists and visa-versa, although both seem to be problematic.) Nevertheless, the bottom line is that most people simply want to protect their brains and keep their minds awake. While it seems evident that we will continue to wrestle with what the mind is, we better get on with the business of prolonging its lifespan and preserving its processes.

In this article, I focus on the work of Giulio Prisco, a pioneer of the Metaverse and a producer of virtual events.  These events engage a broad transdisciplinary culture that revels in scientific explorations, technological innovations, and cosmological expressions of humanness.  Giulio is a physicist, computer scientist, and former senior manager of the European space administration.  According to Wikipedia: “Currently based in Italy, he runs the consulting company Metafuturing and contributes to the science and technology online magazine Tendencias21. He writes and speaks on a wide range of topics, including science, information technology, emerging technologies, virtual worlds, space exploration and futurology.  Prisco’s ideas on virtual realities, technological immortality, mind uploading, and new scientific religions are extensively featured in the OUP book Apocalyptic AI: Visions of Heaven in Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, and Virtual Reality.”

I have divided this interview into four sections, some bearing more creative weight than others but all consequential to the main thrust of this piece.  The sections include Connections, Content, Context and Conjecture.

CONNECTIONS:  Metaverse to Mind

H+: I have enjoyed working with you on a number of projects, especially in Second Life.  I have also benefited from your Teleplace events—ranging from formal guest speakers to casual meetings and get-togethers.  SL and Teleplace are difficult interfaces, but you have managed both with ease.  Tell me, how has your interest in the Metaverse brought you to an open-ended project of “mind”?

Giulio Prisco: I have always been interested in the mind, and the possibility of expanding it beyond all constraints and limitations.  Two important limitations which we should overcome are biology and geography.

Our minds are currently tied to their native biological substrate: our brains and bodies.  Kill the body, and the mind dies.  I am, of course, interested in life extension and Aubrey [de Grey]’s SENS project, and I hope he is right in saying that our biology can be improved to let us live, in healthy biological bodies, for hundreds of years.  At the same time, I suspect that there may be intrinsic limits to the possible lifespan of biological organisms, and intrinsic limits to their cognitive powers. Therefore, I am persuaded that the ultimate realization of the dream of achieving an indefinite lifespan, with vastly enhanced cognitive capabilities, lies in leaving biology behind and moving to a new, post-biological, cybernetic phase of our evolution.  Mind uploading, the transfer of a human mind, memories, personality and “self” (whatever self” is) to new high performance substrates, is the ultimate solution to the problem of biology.  Therefore I have always been interested in mind uploading and I consider it as the “Holy Grail” of transhumanism: let our minds break free of our biological brains and bodies, and we will be free to roam the universe and grow beyond limits.

For most of our history, our minds have also been limited by our inability to communicate with others, with the exception of the very small number of persons who happen to be in our immediate geographical proximity.  Telecom technologies have changed this, and the Internet has changed it dramatically.  I am older than most of today’s “digital natives,” and I still remember the deep sense of awe and wonder that I experienced when I first encountered email and the precursors of the Internet in the early 80s.  I thought — wow, this will change the world! And changed the world it has, and in very deep ways, by permitting people to be part of their chosen intentional communities and interest groups regardless of geographical proximity.  Our transhumanist movement is, in a very important sense, a child of the Internet: we are a geographically sparse group, and the Internet is our physical communication substrate.  You and Max (Max More), and others, have created a transhumanist community in the United States, with strong connection to England, Sweden, and the Netherlands; but I, from traditional Europe, could never have been actively involved in transhumanism without the Internet.

H+:  It is interesting that you say this because I never considered transhumanism to be geographic-centric (the scope was international) but it is true that the west coast had been associated with technological innovation, so it makes sense that it was a central connectivity point.

GP: At the beginning of the Internet age, we communicated via ASCII text.  Then, we have developed more and more communication options: images, video, real-time IRC, VoIP and webcam video, social networks, blips and tweets sent from geo-located mobile phones, and the 3D virtual reality of the Metaverse.

I have written a lot about the Metaverse.  My old copy of Stephenson’s Snow Crash has a prominent place in my bookshelf, I have participated as a beta user in many of the early implementations of the concept, and I have been professionally involved in the development of VR systems for many years.  When I first encountered (the late lamented) There and especially Second Life a few years ago, I immediately realized their potential as the first consumer implementations of Stephenson’s Metaverse.  Since early 2006, I have produced many transhumanist events in Second Life, and then, in other next generation VR environments.

Before continuing, I wish to point out that the term Metaverse is used in two different senses: virtual worlds, or telepresence platforms.  The technologies used are very similar, but the usage patterns are very different.  A virtual world is used as a separate, alternative reality, while a telepresence platform is used to overcome the limitation of geography in this reality (hence tele-presence).  There are, of course, gray areas where virtual worlds and telepresence platforms overlap, and many Metaverse implementations could be used for both, but each implementation tends to develop its “culture” which emphasizes one or the other.  Second Life, the first viable consumer implementation of the Metaverse, has developed an “immersionist” culture which strongly emphasizes its virtual world, alternative reality side.

I have always been extremely interested in telepresence, but I am not much interested (or not yet, see later) in alternative virtual realities — I am interested in this reality, how to live in it, and how to change it.  Also, many virtual worlds encourage self-representation and communication via avatars and text chat, but I find using real-time video and voice much more interactive, interesting and “immersive.” Therefore, at this moment I favor telepresence platforms centered on real-time videoconferencing.

H+: What connections or comparisons do you see between this early stage of identity transfer onto the Metaverse environment in creating avatars, for example, as compared to the future transfer of mind onto a computer system in creating uploads?

GP: The first is a special case of the second.  Once we develop the technology to transfer human minds to computer systems, uploaded minds will have many different post-biological embodiment options to interact with the rest of the world.  Some uploads will choose to live in robotic bodies, perhaps synthetic biological bodies similar to our current bodies, but with vastly enhanced capabilities.  For example, those who want to explore space will be able to choose rugged bodies able to endure the conditions of space.

Other uploads will choose to live as pure software without a permanent physical body.  Occasionally they will take up a physical body, but they will spend most of their time in the Metaverse, inhabiting suitably designed virtual reality-scapes like those described in the SF novels of, for example, Greg Egan, and interacting with the physical world via suitable sensors and actuators.  Virtual reality habitats for uploads will be, in some cases, sensorially indistinguishable from physical reality, or in other cases as wildly different from it as the imagination of uploads will permit.

At this moment, I am not very interested in alternative virtual realities because I find them far too primitive to be taken seriously: I just don’t find cartoon scenes with clumsy pixel toons moving on small computer screens immersive enough to suspend disbelief.  This will change with the development of “real” VR technology with full sensorial input based on direct stimulation of the brain, indistinguishable from reality.

H+:   …toward an enhancement design linking real-time and virtuality, and prolonging life.

GP: A human mind needs means to interface with other minds and the rest of the world.  This necessary interface can be called a “body” in an extended sense and, if it performs its interface role well, its nature is largely irrelevant.  Inhabiting a biological body, a robotic body, or a virtual body with suitable sensors and actuators, will not necessarily make a big difference to future minds.

H+:  Does our becoming accustomed to transferring our identity onto one or more avatars help us better understand the idea of Uploads?

GP: That depends, of course, on the specific person you ask, and I think many virtual world users who strongly identify with their avatars would answer affirmatively.  My good friend Extropia DaSilva, a well known transhumanist avatar in Second Life, considers herself as an independent person, who at this moment happens to share a wetware brain with her “primary,” but looks forward to breaking free.  Extie lives in Second Life as an early explorer of post-biological life, and I consider her a pioneer.

On the other hand, I think current VR is far too crude and too primitive to be taken seriously as an alternative reality, and I have always considered my avatars in virtual worlds as nothing more than a convenient interface.

CONTEXT:  Teleplace Events [including ASIM @ Singularity Summit 2010]

H+:  Recently you worked on an event which virtually linked-in to the Singularity Summit and was produced by Randal A. Koene and Suzanne Gildert.  What role did you play in this project?

GP: The event, held as a satellite to the Singularity Summit 2010, in the same hotel in San Francisco on August 16 and 17 (after the Summit, which was held on August 14 and 15), is the ASIM 2010 Conference, where ASIM stands for “Advancing Substrate-Independent Minds.”

A few months ago I became a member of a mailing list initiated by Randal and other experts, dedicated to discussing conceptual and technological developments in the field.  I was already promoting my teleXLR8 project based on Teleplace (see below) as a telepresence community for real life-like discussions, presentations and workshops for transhumanist groups, so I helped organize and participated in the first and the second closed ASIM workshops, held in Teleplace.

The ASIM 2010 conference has been a very ambitious “mixed reality” event.  Remote participants in Teleplace were able to follow the talks via interactive video streaming, ask questions to the speakers, and contribute to the discussion.  Two speakers gave their talks via Teleplace.

H+:  Why do you use the Teleplace for your projects? Can you give a short description of Teleplace and why you use it — its benefits and drawbacks?

GP: I use Teleplace because, based on my (quite extensive) knowledge of and experience in this sector, and at this moment Teleplace is by far the best operational technology for online meetings, workshops, presentations, seminars, conferences and e-learning.

In a few words, Teleplace is a 3D virtual environment with built-in multi-user videoconferencing, voice, and a powerful collaboration platform.

In more detail, it is a telepresence platform which includes 3D virtual environments, full audio and videoconferencing for multiple users, desktop screen sharing, shared text editors and white-boards, and the possibility to easily import Office documents (e.g. Word documents and Power Point presentations) for collaborative viewing and editing via the built-in Open Office application.  Teleplace also has a built-in collaborative browser, the possibility to easily import images, 3D models and video, and last but not least a tool to video record and/or webcast sessions.  These features, and the fact that Teleplace is very easy to use, make it the most suitable platform for online presentations and workshops.  Lecturers and participants can, at any moment, easily import new presentation material that they wish to use, show it to others, and even edit it on the fly in collaboration with other participants.

For these reasons I have chosen Teleplace to implement the teleXLR8 project, a “telepresence community for cultural acceleration” focused on science and technology education and outreach.  Currently in closed beta, teleXLR8 will offer public seminars, workshops and conferences for “citizen-scientists” as well as specific e-learning courses.  Besides the three ASIM workshops, teleXLR8 has been used for several meetings of the European transhumanist coordination group, many ad-hoc meetings, and several public lectures.  The most recent lectures were Suzanne Gildert on quantum computing and Ben Goertzel on the Cosmist Manifesto on September 12 (we usually plan these events on a Saturday, but September 11 did not seem a good choice for a lecture on positive cosmic visions).

Coming to the “drawbacks”: with so much content available online and very easy to use, we have all developed terminal attention deficit and expect everything to be immediately usable without having to learn how to use it.  Now, Teleplace is very easy to use, much easier to learn than Webex or Second Life and not significantly more difficult to learn than, say, Skype, but it does require a few minutes of learning.  We have written a very simple help page with text and videos for new teleXLR8 users, but many new users don’t bother to read it.

For example, you would be surprised to know how many new users don’t realize that Teleplace is not a website that you can visit with a browser, but an application which needs to be downloaded and installed on your PC.  But, now that I remember it… you had this problem yourself on your first visit, didn’t you?

There is another “drawback”: Teleplace has been developed for the enterprise, and it costs money.  It would be nice to use free software, but there is no free software that comes even close to the operational performance of Teleplace.  So far, the good folks at Teleplace have kindly sponsored this project by letting me use the Teleplace area of a company I am associated with, a Teleplace reseller.  I hope to be able to offer access to teleXLR8 to end users at a very low price in a planned next phase of the project.

H+:  How many avatars and viewers/listeners were connecting to the event?

GP: I think between the two days about 30 participants have attended the event onsite, and about 20 participants have attended via Teleplace.  You were a notable exception.  We were expecting you!

H+: I was stuck in an airport terminal with no net connection.  Drats!

GP: After attending both days of the conference remotely in Teleplace, I am very happy with the performance of the Teleplace system as a means to open up conferences to a global remote audience in “mixed reality,” with crisp video and audio (after properly setting up the microphones) and deep interactivity for all participants.  I have participated in ASIM 2010 from the middle of nowhere in Central Europe, with a 3G phone link to the Internet and a very weak signal (in other words, my Internet connection was very slow).  Even with a poor connection, I have been able to participate in ASIM 2010 without any problem.  There are, of course, special problems to deal with in mixed reality events.  For example, in the first half of Day 2 remote participants could not hear the on-site participants well if they were far from the microphone.  In future events, we will use cordless microphones to give to onsite participants when they want to say something.  In this case, the problem was solved by asking onsite participants to go to the microphone to comment and ask questions.  Mixed reality via the professional and social collaboration platform Teleplace permits merging onsite and remote participants in one virtual group, and it is the best way to open up a conference to remote participants that I have seen.  The 2-way video and audio link enables each participant, on-site or remote, to be seen and heard by all other participants, on-site or remote.

CONTENT: Advancing Substrate-Independent Minds

H+:  For a little history, can you describe ASIM (Advancing Substrate-Independent Minds) and how it differs from more common terms we have been using for many years — upload, mind transfer, or whole brain emulation?  (BTW, why so many terms?  Isn’t this confusing to people?)

GP: Well, I must say that I still prefer the popular term “Mind Uploading.”  It is clear; many people use it; and it has a certain bold and visionary flavor; refreshingly similar to the disruptive transhumanist discourse of the 80s and 90s.

At the same time, I consider the emergence of the need for alternative terms as a very positive signal.  These days, there are “serious scientists” and researchers, working in the private sector as well as in universities and research centers, who are actively researching precursor and enabling technologies for mind uploading, often with the explicit ultimate goal of uploading.  They must get funding for their projects, apply for research grants, and submit papers to peer-reviewed journals.  They are actually doing research on mind uploading in very conservative industrial or government environments and they need plausible deniability — they need to distance themselves from the wild-eyed, visionary transhumanist “fringe scientists” who first used the term “uploading”! In this sense, the need for alternative terms just means that our ideas are fast becoming mainstream.

I am not a serious scientist, and I think I will continue to use the term “uploading.”  It is more direct than “Whole Brain Emulation,” which in my opinion does not make sufficiently clear that our objective is transferring actual thinking and feeling minds — with their own unique individual memories, personalities and “selfness” — to alternative substrates.  The term “Substrate-Independent Minds” has been criticized on many discussion fora for not being sufficiently clear.  Many people have interpreted it as minds independent of any physical substrate rather than minds independent of a specific physical substrate, or in other words minds that can be transferred to another substrate without losing their core features.

I am quite agnostic on terminology.  I use different terms with different audiences, and I will cheerfully adopt whatever term will gain acceptance.  But, in my own mind, I will continue thinking of mind uploading — the beautiful transhumanist dream, soon to be reality, of leaving our meat cages behind and roaming the universe, the multiverse and beyond, as software-based entities.

H+:  In your view, who are the thought leaders in the field of mind uploading and how do you see them differing in their particular and unique theories?

GP: The names of the participants in the ASIM workshops, the recent “mixed reality” workshop and the previous two online workshops, come immediately to my mind.  I recommend visiting the carboncopies website, established by Randal A. Koene and Suzanne Gildert, frequently, for information and news.

Many thought leaders are persuaded that, within a few decades, we will develop operational technologies for destructively scanning biological brains in such a way as to retain enough information for future reinstantiation of the mind.  Some researchers are even persuaded that we already have suitable technology for the scanning step, which we might be able to perform operationally in only a few years (the development of reinstantiation technology will take longer, according to all experts).  Of course, non-destructive scanning would be much better, but experts disagree on its possible timeline, and even feasibility in principle.  I prefer to keep an open mind and, since non-destructive very high resolution brain scanning seems feasible in principle (that is, it is compatible with the laws of physics and so it is just another engineering problem), I tend to think that sooner or later it will be achieved.

Another possibility is the Bainbridge-Rothblatt “soft” approach.  Instead of (or besides) reading a lot of the low-level information physically encoded in the brain by using “hard” brain readout technologies, we can write a lot of high-level information out of the brain as diaries, blogs, pictures, videos, answers to personality tests, etc. in such a way as to create over the years a large database of personal information (see the CybeRev and Lifenaut projects of Martine Rothblatt, hoping that some future technology may be able to bring the information in the database to life as a valid continuation (from both objective and subjective points of view) of the original person.

A very interesting related concept is the “me-program” — a generic model of a human mind that can act as a lower level layer of firmware and system software for the higher-level personal information in a mindfile.  To overuse a common and very simplified analogy, if this document that I am writing were a person, the software running on this PC (from low level firmware to Windows and Word) would be the me-program.  By analogy with the genome, it seems plausible that most of the information that constitutes a person may be in the generic me-program, and the actual “self” may constitute only a small part of the total information.  The simplest assumption is that the me-program is the same, for all practical purposes, for different persons.  It follows that, once we develop a suitable me-program, we can use it as a platform for reconstructing individual minds as higher-level plug-in modules.  Not surprisingly, the concept of me-program was quite extensively discussed at the ASIM 2010 conference, especially in the first part of the second day (see videos).

I think Bainbridge-Rothblatt soft uploading is feasible in principle, but with two major caveats.1) We need data transfer rates from the brain to computer storage to be much faster by several orders of magnitude to permit storing enough information to reconstruct a given person with a sufficient degree of identity preservation.  Even so, the transfer of memories to storage would take decades and can only be practical with implanted, thought operated (or even automatically operated) devices.  Here is where BMI and neural prosthesis come in.2) The memories (I am using “memories” in a wide sense to include dreams, hopes, fears, emotional responses…) can only run on a substrate (hardware and system software) flexible and powerful enough to run them with a sufficient degree of identity preservation.  The system software must include a me-program, and very powerful AI systems will probably be needed to blend personal memories in the generic me-program.As above, I tend to guess that the me-program may be essentially the same for different persons. It seems likely that in order to reconstruct a suitable me-program by reverse engineering we will need not only functional studies, but also and especially very detailed structural studies.If these guesses are correct, Bainbridge-Rothblatt “uploading patients” can be reinstantiated only after most other parts of the ASIM program have been achieved.

H+:  Which theory do you support?

GP: All… and none.  I am persuaded that many current theories and studies point to the right directions and will contribute useful elements and enabling technologies, but I don’t think there is a magic bullet scheme for uploading.

With the combination of advances in several parallel current research directions — and probably also some new approaches that nobody has yet thought of — I am persuaded uploading may become a practical reality someday.  At the same time, I think achieving it may take longer than we wish and require reformulations of current notions of self.  Having worked so many years in research and engineering management I know only too well that achieving an ambitious objective very often takes more time than expected — often much more — and always takes more money than expected.  So despite many very promising ongoing advances, I remain very skeptical on the timeline.  I don’t think even the first research demonstrators will be achieved by 2050 (I am happy to see that others are more optimist, and I will be very happy to be proven wrong).But, as I said, mind uploading is feasible in principle and it will be achieved someday.What can we (people of our generation) do? Perhaps we may be able to prepare our upload mindfiles via a combination of:

∞     Brain preservation optimized for future scanning (see below);
∞     DNA or softcopy genome storage;
∞     Bainbridge-Rothblatt personality capture and storage.
Though our natural remaining lifespan is not likely to be long enough for us to benefit from uploading technology, a combination of these methods may transport (a sufficiently detailed instance of) us to a future where uploading is an operational reality.

H+:  Getting back to the issue of uploading research being mostly theoretical, is there anyone whose work stands out as being, at least in part, practice-based?

GP: Most of the work is still theoretical and there is no practical thing that we can do to upload, perhaps with one exception.  The Brain Preservation Foundation of Ken Hayworth has been established to promote serious scientific research in the field of brain preservation for long-term static storage.  From their website (paraphrasing): Its goal is to spur development of a hospital surgical procedure which can reliably and demonstrably preserve “the structural connectivity of 99.9% of the synapses within a human brain.” Existing scientific literature suggests that such a goal should be readily achievable by extending (via vascular perfusion) existing laboratory protocols for the chemical fixation and plastic embedding of small pieces of brain tissue.  If such a surgical procedure were available in hospitals it could provide interested persons a means of avoiding death and reaching the distant future.  One of the first initiatives of the foundation is the Brain Preservation Technology Prize, a prize for demonstrating ultrastructure preservation across an entire large mammalian brain verified by a comprehensive electron microscopic survey procedure

According to Hayworth, a chemically preserved, plastic-embedded brain can be losslessly subdivided in strips that can be imaged at nanometer resolution by current technology.  This resolution is sufficient to image the smallest brain structures which, according to current scientific knowledge, are the physical substrate of our thoughts, memories, feelings, emotional responses, hopes, dreams and identity.  It is important to stress that this can be done with current technology, and Hayworth cites experimental results to prove it.  The information in a chemically preserved brain can be retrieved and run on a different substrate.  This makes chemical brain preservation a storage technique optimized for future nanoscale scanning, and an ideal form of “cryonics for uploaders.”  For those who accept scanning the brain and running the information in the scan file on a different substrate as a valid form of identity preservation, chemical brain preservation seems clearly superior to cryopreservation.I definitely belong to this group.  I look forward to being extracted from my brain, leave biology behind, and run as substrate-independent software in a virtual body, roaming the universe and perhaps wearing a physical body on occasions.  Mind uploading is a two-step process: 1) scanning the brain to read the information in it, and 2) running the information in the scan file (mindfile) on a suitable alternative substrate.  Of course, after the first scanning step 1), the resulting mindfile can be stored until a suitable technology is available for 2).  But I used to think that even developing suitable brain scanning technology would take many decades and perhaps centuries.  On the contrary, I am now persuaded that chemical brain preservation may permit storing “solid mindfiles,” physical databases of memory and personal identity, which future technologies will be able to ignite and bring back to life in a suitable physical substrate, in only one or two decades.  So, I will choose chemical brain preservation once it is operationally available.Hayworth’s “uploading may be only 15 years in the future” (in the sense of operational brain preservation suitable for future scanning and uploading) is very refreshing compared to the cautious, boring and defeatist attitude of today’s moderate transhumanists, repented ex-transhumanists and anti-transhumanists in disguise.  I feel like I did back in the optimistic 90s, and I hope it lasts.  I prefer not to discuss philosophical issues related to personal identity preservation.  For me, things are clear enough, and I encourage you to read Hayworth’s “Killed by bad philosophy: Why brain preservation followed by mind uploading is a cure for death” for a crystal clear analysis.

H+:  In reading some of the discussion that took place at the Teleplace event, it seems that amongst like-minded attendees, there is not a consensus on what mind is.  In your opinion, is it consequential for computer scientists, neuroscientists, and philosophers of mind, to know what mind is in order to upload it?

GP: Of course, when we know much more about the mind, we will be in a much better position to assess options for mind re-engineering and uploading.  But I wish to point out that, often, we can work with something without a consensus on what that something really is.

For example, the compass was used much before the development of workable theories of electromagnetism, and without any agreement on what exactly it was that made it work.  For a more modern example, Richard Feynman was (and still is) probably right in saying that nobody really understands quantum physics — the double-slit experiment, usually discussed in the first introductory quantum physics course, is a complete mystery for our intuitive conceptualization.  Nobody knows what a quantum state is, but this does not prevent us from building very precise quantum states in our electronic devices.

So, I would very much like to know what a mind is, but I think perhaps we will be able to copy and paste minds long before reaching a consensual understanding of mind.

A related issue is the endless discussion on uploading, identity, self, qualia etc. on the transhumanist forums Extropy’s Extropy-Chat, and AGIRI list singularity, which restarts periodically without ever reaching any agreement.  I have the feeling that we are complicating things too much.  According to simple common sense, I am what my brain does, and you are what your brain does.  Our brains are physical systems which operate in a physical universe whose laws are, in principle, knowable and understandable.  It follows that, if we can copy enough information from our brains to a new substrate able to process our mindfiles, we will continue to live in the new substrate.  Whatever we are.

CONJECTURE:  Giulio’s Aim

H+:  No matter the medium, you are remarkably, not to mention delightfully, transparent and accessible.  I see your mindfulness as a connective link for others to tag onto in virtuality.  Beyond the apparent mechanics of SL and Teleplace, what is it that drives you and what are you looking to achieve?

GP: I want to obsolete biology and geography as fundamental limitations.  I see developing the possibility to transcend biology and become Substrate-Independent Minds via mind uploading as the ultimate transhumanist goal and a key step in the evolution of our species toward a beautiful cosmic destiny.

I see developing telepresence solutions to permit real life-like, rich and deep collaboration independent of geographical location (substrate-independent collaboration?) as the ultimate aim of the process started with the development of modern telecom technology and the Internet.  Soon, we will be able to interact with others in VR environments indistinguishable from physical reality. This will represent another quantum leap in our evolution, and future uploads will inhabit a Metaverse independent of geography, where they will be able to talk to others at the click of a thought.

I am very driven by the prospect of a future convergence of mind uploading and telepresence, and that is why I dedicate much of my time to trying to give some small contributions.  With the teleXLR8 project I hope to offer all citizen scientists — even those who are not lucky enough to live in one of the current hubs of high tech activity — the possibility to interact deeply and frequently with their chosen communities.

For more information on Giulio Prisco and his upcoming projects go here.

See Also:

Mind Uploading and Mind Children

A Cosmist Manifesto: an Advocacy

Transgender, Transhuman, Transbeman

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