In today’s podcast, we discuss the possibility of “mind uploading,” or emulating a human brain inside a computer. We begin with a survey history of the concept, and then transition into a discussion of the sea of philosophical and ethical questions that uploading inevitably raises. Is whole brain emulation a realistic path to personal immortality or just a glorified version of having kids? If a terminally ill person signs a release allowing their brain to be scanned, can you legally hold the copy to the terms of this same agreement? What will PETA have to say about the first successful animal uploads?
- Whole Brain Emulation: A Roadmap (Paper by Sandberg and Bostrom)
- carboncopies.org (a nonprofit with the goal of advancing whole brain emulation)
- Open Worm (project to emulate c. elegans inside of a computer)
- The City and the Stars (novel by Arthur C. Clarke)
- If Uploads Come First (essay by Robin Hanson)