[sl4] Re: Apocalyptic AI - book presentation and discussion in Second Life, Tuesday March 30, 10am PST

From: Giulio Prisco (2nd email) (eschatoon@gmail.com)
Date: Tue Mar 30 2010 - 04:51:36 MDT

Reminder: today March 30, 10am PST, 1pm EST, 7pm Continental EU, 6pm UK

SLURL and info here


On Tue, Mar 23, 2010 at 9:08 PM, Giulio Prisco (2nd email)
<eschatoon@gmail.com> wrote:

> Oxford University Press - Apocalyptic AI: Visions of Heaven in
> Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, and Virtual Reality, by Robert M.
> Geraci.
> See my review of this excellent book. Robert has done a lot of field
> reconnaissance work behind transhumanist lines in Second Life. The
> book has a full report of Robert's field work and his interpretation
> of the spirit of transhumanism, and the spirit of virtual worlds. This
> book has started many interesting (and often vigorous) discussions in
> both transhumanist and Second Life interest groups.
> Robert will come to Second Life for a book presentation and discussion
> on Tuesday March 30, at 10am PST. The talk will take place in the
> Singularity Club (which can be seen in the background of the picture)
> on the Transvision Nexus island. Please follow this SLURL to teleport,
> and bring interesting questions.
> New World Notes - Oxford Press Book on Digital Age Spirituality Argues
> Second Life Provides Platform For Innovative Religious Thinking: The
> ultra-prestigious Oxford University just published a book devoted to
> theology in the digital age: Apocalyptic AI Visions of Heaven in
> Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, and Virtual Reality. It's written
> by Manhattan College professor Robert Geraci, known in Second Life as
> Soren Ferlinghetti (pictured), and unsurprisingly, a whole chapter is
> devoted to Second Life, and conversations with several well-known
> Extropians (sometimes called transhumanists), who often see Second
> Life as a means for transcending the human body.
> From the publishers' site: "Description: Apocalyptic AI, the hope that
> we might one day upload our minds into machines or cyberspace and live
> forever, is a surprisingly wide-spread and influential idea, affecting
> everything from the world view of online gamers to government research
> funding and philosophical thought. In Apocalyptic AI, Robert Geraci
> offers the first serious account of this "cyber-theology" and the
> people who promote it.
> Drawing on interviews with roboticists and AI researchers and with
> devotees of the online game Second Life, among others, Geraci
> illuminates the ideas of such advocates of Apocalyptic AI as Hans
> Moravec and Ray Kurzweil. He reveals that the rhetoric of Apocalyptic
> AI is strikingly similar to that of the apocalyptic traditions of
> Judaism and Christianity. In both systems, the believer is trapped in
> a dualistic universe and expects a resolution in which he or she will
> be translated to a transcendent new world and live forever in a
> glorified new body. Equally important, Geraci shows how this worldview
> shapes our culture. For instance, Apocalyptic AI has influenced
> funding agencies such as the National Science Foundation, helping to
> prioritize robotics and AI research. It has become the ideology of
> choice for online gamers, such as those involved in Second Life; it
> has had a profound impact on the study of the mind; and it has
> inspired scientists and theologians alike to wonder about the super
> robots of the future. Should we think of robots as persons? What kind
> of morality would intelligent robots espouse?
> Apocalyptic AI has become a powerful force in modern culture. In this
> superb volume, Robert Geraci shines a light on this belief system,
> revealing what it is and how it is changing society."
> --
> Giulio Prisco
> http://cosmeng.org/index.php/Giulio_Prisco
> aka Eschatoon Magic
> http://cosmeng.org/index.php/Eschatoon

Giulio Prisco
aka Eschatoon Magic

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