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an anti sens response I got


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#1 brokenportal

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Posted 16 August 2007 - 07:00 AM


I say:

Heres an anti sens statment I got to a bulletin I posted. Im too tired to respond to it right now, but could you guys tell me how you would respond to it? I would include something like, "you could be right, but digging in and getting your hands dirty is one of the first steps to making something important happen." and Ide include things like, "this isnt just some shit some schizophrenic made up about going to the moon. Its this and this and that," and then Ide make a couple of analogies and things. Here is his response to me writing 'sens is the next big thing and you need to read about it':



They say:

"""Where do you find stuff like this? It sounds like they have more "theories" than actual scientific evidence. I have a million theories of things that "could be" but I have no scientific evidence to prove it. They also say in the Q&A section of things like overpopulation & such, and they just say we should worry about it when the time comes. so... we are going to worry about using a product 30 years later.... I'd say worry about it now! I mean, sure, MAYBE you can see yourself using such a product in the future, but can you see yourself funding a project for THIRTY FREAKIN YEARS, that might not even hit the market?? They need money. It's a big, big, biiiiig idea that someone got, and they reasoned out the possibilities, and used their own logic to make it all sound professional-like, but the information they have, the actual FACTUAL information that they have, is nothing new. It's a big way of convincing people like you to send them money for the next 30 years to fund some crazy idea they have. Maybe I should make a website so that other people can pay for my crazy ideas, while I sit and **** around with it for free... and if it doesn't work out, who cares? not me, because i did it all for free."""

#2 Luna

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Posted 16 August 2007 - 07:08 AM

Oh, hate those kind of ignorants.
But he can only base his point on the fact you don't hear "SENS" and "immortality" in the news..

#3 brokenportal

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Posted 16 August 2007 - 07:34 AM

Its like he seems to think that Aubrey de Greys ideas are kind of like the 'Astronaut Farmers' ideas if youve ever seen that movie. Its fiction but greatly inspiring movie and analogous to a lot of things. People didnt beleive the astronaut farmer, and I guess, if they didnt take the dear time to dig up the details of it themselves then why should they have right? They probably never looked into it. It never hit the news so why should they beleive it? But when JFK says it everybodies on board for beleiving that shuttle is going to make it.

So I guess its like, how do we get Aubreys image to be less like the Astronaut farmers and more like JFKs? Is this conclusion making any sense? Im super tired.

#4 Aegist

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Posted 16 August 2007 - 08:30 AM

"""Where do you find stuff like this? It sounds like they have more "theories" than actual scientific evidence. I have a million theories of things that "could be" but I have no scientific evidence to prove it. They also say in the Q&A section of things like overpopulation & such, and they just say we should worry about it when the time comes. so... we are going to worry about using a product 30 years later.... I'd say worry about it now! I mean, sure, MAYBE you can see yourself using such a product in the future, but can you see yourself funding a project for THIRTY FREAKIN YEARS, that might not even hit the market?? They need money. It's a big, big, biiiiig idea that someone got, and they reasoned out the possibilities, and used their own logic to make it all sound professional-like, but the information they have, the actual FACTUAL information that they have, is nothing new. It's a big way of convincing people like you to send them money for the next 30 years to fund some crazy idea they have. Maybe I should make a website so that other people can pay for my crazy ideas, while I sit and **** around with it for free... and if it doesn't work out, who cares? not me, because i did it all for free."""

Just because he is a jerk, doesn't mean everyone else on Earth is. That is also why he will never be able to get people to give him money for his great idea, because he would do that. It is clear that Aubrey is very very actively working on this, and even if SENS is all wrong (a possibility), then more will come out of SENS than just the science. Social awareness, opportunity, improved understanding (we will at least know more of what doesn't work, if not something far greater), and a whole list of unexpected benefits.

This isn't about SENS. This isn't about Aubrey. This isn't even about money. This is about progress in human understanding and human potential. This is about making practical immortality a possibility.

#5 Athanasios

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Posted 16 August 2007 - 11:09 AM

Maybe I should make a website so that other people can pay for my crazy ideas, while I sit and **** around with it for free... and if it doesn't work out, who cares? not me, because i did it all for free.


Yeah, and when he has a bio like aubrey's, I will visit.

#6 gavrilov

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Posted 16 August 2007 - 04:58 PM

Some supporting arguments for SENS could be found in comments posted here:

http://longevity-sci...07/01/sens.html

Hope it helps,

#7 Liquidus

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Posted 16 August 2007 - 08:16 PM

Thanks for the counter points Dr. Gavrilov

I always enjoy reading challenges to scientific theories and initiatives (challenges, competition, the desire to improve are what make science...well science), I was hoping to read a challenge with substance. Instead it seems as if the inquirer is so ignorant to the current progression of technology and the soon-to-explode field of biotechnology. Instead the inquirer uses the same bland retort that you hear from people who seem to be skeptical of everything and anything, especially when you scientifically suggest that we will be able to do the 'impossible' (in the eyes of the uninformed who anxiously wait for their 'eternal happiness' in some mystical metaphysical kingdom), curing aging strikes some people as offensive for some asinine reason, as if 'engineering a cure for a disease' is unfounded. Objectively speaking, aging is clearly a disease, many scientists already know it's curable, but we haven't really started grinding down to getting it solved.

My own opinion is that this is not an anti-sens response, but rather just a blatant sign of ignorance from someone who could spend a few days reading modern science and technology websites.

By the way, Dr. Kurzweil disagrees fundamentally with Dr. de Grey's advocacy of Sens. Dr. de Grey believes there are 7 obstacles to the conquer of aging, Dr. Kurzweil believes there's more like 12 obstacles. That's a concrete anti-sens response, but Dr. Kurzweil doesn't devalue Sens since Sens is the first of it's kind. There's still a good chance that Sens might be successful, but the issue is not whether or not it will work, but rather that awareness is being raised regarding the problem of dying due to age related illness and deterioration. Dr. de Grey and Dr. Kurzweil will both be seen as revolutionaries (although they already should be considered as such), and they don't even agree on the same fundamental issues. The beauty of science and knowledge is that it doesn't matter how we cure aging, just that we work towards curing aging.

I don't want to go too off topic, but most intellectuals understand the truth behind death. Not all human beings are intellectuals, so I definitely understand why an overwhelming number of people can't really process the logic behind needing to cure aging related issues. I don't really acknowledge the response of anti-sens/anti-cure-for-aging from someone who doesn't have a very solid reason for it, since the amount of intellectuals in the world is probably still in the minority, it's logical to expect a lot of unfounded, illogical retort come from 'your average joe'.

I've spent enough time watching the world's most informed and educated minds unanimously agree that aging is a problem that will be solved in the future. The issue is not if, but rather when, and the growing objective is to have it happen sooner than later (which makes sense). By funding Sens, even if it doesn't work as fully expected, the research alone will be intangible, and will go a long way in the general 'war on aging'. If that's not a reason to support Sens, then I see no point in even discussing the matter with someone since they prove they can't use logic to discuss a very important issue.

That's how I try to keep the skepticism in perspective.

#8 bgwowk

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Posted 16 August 2007 - 08:30 PM

"""Where do you find stuff like this? It sounds like they have more "theories" than actual scientific evidence. I have a million theories of things that "could be" but I have no scientific evidence to prove it. They also say in the Q&A section of things like overpopulation & such, and they just say we should worry about it when the time comes. so... we are going to worry about using a product 30 years later.... I'd say worry about it now! I mean, sure, MAYBE you can see yourself using such a product in the future, but can you see yourself funding a project for THIRTY FREAKIN YEARS, that might not even hit the market?? They need money. It's a big, big, biiiiig idea that someone got, and they reasoned out the possibilities, and used their own logic to make it all sound professional-like, but the information they have, the actual FACTUAL information that they have, is nothing new. It's a big way of convincing people like you to send them money for the next 30 years to fund some crazy idea they have. Maybe I should make a website so that other people can pay for my crazy ideas, while I sit and **** around with it for free... and if it doesn't work out, who cares? not me, because i did it all for free."""

Perhaps this individual is unaware that his characterization of SENS research fundraising actually describes the process by which money is sought and awarded to most basic medical science research. Does he also object to scientists seeking to cure cancer or AIDS based on ideas and research that might take THIRTY FREAKIN YEARS to amount to anything? Why not send the above rant to Jerry Lewis and the scientists he has supported with his muscular dystrophy telethons for thirty years? Of course they don't deserve it, and neither does Aubrey de Grey.

The only difference between cancer, AIDS, and MD vs. aging is that aging isn't yet a politically correct disease. Until it is, no amount of scientific argument will influence someone as cynical as quoted above.

#9 Mind

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Posted 16 August 2007 - 08:41 PM

Ditto bwowk's sentiments.

Dude has no clue. SENS was critiqued by Technology Review and came out on top. That's at least one mark for SENS.

#10 niner

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Posted 17 August 2007 - 01:57 AM

Objectively speaking, aging is clearly a disease, many scientists already know it's curable...

No one knows it's curable. Some scientists know that it could be slowed. (e.g. Resveratrol, CR) Some scientists think that it could be cured, but no one "knows" that.

#11 Aegist

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Posted 17 August 2007 - 02:09 AM

Objectively speaking, aging is clearly a disease, many scientists already know it's curable...

No one knows it's curable. Some scientists know that it could be slowed. (e.g. Resveratrol, CR) Some scientists think that it could be cured, but no one "knows" that.

If you know anything about biology, you know that there is nothing intrinsically certain about aging. It is therefore curable. The question is simply how perfectly we need to understand everything about biology before we can implement it. But there is no doubt that aging is curable.

The only reason people have doubt, is because they are short sighted. They look at what we currently understand, what we can foresee in our near future...but our near future isn't our limit. The distant future is beyond our comprehension, the powers and understandings we may unlock are almost unlimited. Particularly when it comes to the incredible variety and plasticity possible in Biology.

Can we do it? That is up to how long we survive as an innovative society and how long it takes to achieve that level of understanding. Is it possible? Without a doubt.

Edited by Aegist, 17 August 2007 - 02:21 AM.


#12 PWAIN

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Posted 17 August 2007 - 02:42 AM

Sorry but I haven't seen a good counter arguement to what the guy said. Why would anyon not intrested in the science invest - they wouldn't and this has proven to be the case. If I invest in a company, I do so to make money and soon, otherwise it is just charity. I don't care how they make the money (as long as I find it morally acceptable) just that they do.

This is real worlld stuff, not devoted follower and believer stuff and it is a valid question. Perhaps repackaging is required.

#13 Aegist

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Posted 17 August 2007 - 03:28 AM

If I invest in a company, I do so to make money and soon, otherwise it is just charity.

It is a charity....

#14 bgwowk

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Posted 17 August 2007 - 05:14 AM

resvhead, there is no argument to fund SENS research at this time from a pure business perspective, if that is what you are looking for. It is a charity, just like people who canvass for cancer research or muscular dystrophy. The initiative is charitable fund raising to support research toward the cure of a disease that kills billions of people, and that he is certainly going to get himself if he lives long enough. In what sense is that not an answer to his question?

Note carefully that he's not asking why this particular initiative should be supported. He is denouncing the entire concept of funding hypothesis-driven scientific research. The only real reply to that kind of trolling is, "Gimme a break."

I myself am not writing in this thread to convince that guy of anything, but to once again point out to readers here the double standard that is applied to aging compared to other diseases. Nobody would write that way about a fund raising initiative for research to treat a "recognized" disease. Nobody.

Edited by bgwowk, 17 August 2007 - 05:51 AM.


#15 Ghostrider

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Posted 17 August 2007 - 06:25 AM

"""Where do you find stuff like this? It sounds like they have more "theories" than actual scientific evidence. I have a million theories of things that "could be" but I have no scientific evidence to prove it. They also say in the Q&A section of things like overpopulation & such, and they just say we should worry about it when the time comes. so... we are going to worry about using a product 30 years later.... I'd say worry about it now! I mean, sure, MAYBE you can see yourself using such a product in the future, but can you see yourself funding a project for THIRTY FREAKIN YEARS, that might not even hit the market?? They need money. It's a big, big, biiiiig idea that someone got, and they reasoned out the possibilities, and used their own logic to make it all sound professional-like, but the information they have, the actual FACTUAL information that they have, is nothing new. It's a big way of convincing people like you to send them money for the next 30 years to fund some crazy idea they have. Maybe I should make a website so that other people can pay for my crazy ideas, while I sit and **** around with it for free... and if it doesn't work out, who cares? not me, because i did it all for free."""

Perhaps this individual is unaware that his characterization of SENS research fundraising actually describes the process by which money is sought and awarded to most basic medical science research. Does he also object to scientists seeking to cure cancer or AIDS based on ideas and research that might take THIRTY FREAKIN YEARS to amount to anything? Why not send the above rant to Jerry Lewis and the scientists he has supported with his muscular dystrophy telethons for thirty years? Of course they don't deserve it, and neither does Aubrey de Grey.

The only difference between cancer, AIDS, and MD vs. aging is that aging isn't yet a politically correct disease. Until it is, no amount of scientific argument will influence someone as cynical as quoted above.


If you bother to respond to his post, you already have the right points. Look at how much research has been invested into curing other diseases, although important, will not relieve quite as much suffering as curing aging. Additionally, his arguments about over-population -- to the extreme case could be applied to curing cancer and AIDS. Both kill a large number of people, does he accept that this might be a good thing as it helps fight against over-population? Cure AIDS promote death by starvation? Or look at my favorite examples, war in Iraq and the space program. Both of these causes consume a lot of money and have less benefit compared to extending life.

Hopefully after anti-aging therapies become available, the poster will maintain his view that they should not be used :-)

#16 Luna

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Posted 17 August 2007 - 07:49 AM

I find it funny "there is no argument to fund SENS research at this time from a pure business perspective".

"Do you want to have money or do you want to die?"
Easy question I believe.

#17 mike250

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Posted 17 August 2007 - 11:46 AM

both are needed. I wouldn't go without both of them.

#18 brokenportal

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Posted 17 August 2007 - 01:35 PM

Ide go with out money first. Ide live in squalor for a milenia in order to continue living indefinently with freedom to pull myself from the squalor after that.

Being alive is a really big deal. Being alive is a really really big deal.

#19 bgwowk

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Posted 17 August 2007 - 03:42 PM

The psychology is fascinating. Nick Bostrom has compared it to Stockholm Syndrome, in which hostages cope with futility by befriending and supporting their captors, even if they are brutal killers. So it is with biological aging.

If news arrived about a plague that was going to kill almost everyone older than 25 years old, the resources of the world would be mobilized to combat it. Nobody would write rants about how there is too little evidence anything can be done to justify trying. However a plague that disables and kills almost everyone older than 85 years old is another story. Go figure.

#20 Live Forever

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Posted 17 August 2007 - 07:08 PM

The psychology is fascinating.  Nick Bostrom has compared it to Stockholm Syndrome, in which hostages cope with futility by befriending and supporting their captors, even if they are brutal killers.  So it is with biological aging.

Wow; that is a really good comparison. I am going to use that on some people I know.

#21 Aegist

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Posted 18 August 2007 - 12:23 AM

Ide go with out money first. Ide live in squalor for a milenia in order to continue living indefinently with freedom to pull myself from the squalor after that.

Being alive is a really big deal. Being alive is a really really big deal.

I agree completely. Money can't buy you immortality, but immortality gives you eternity to solve your money problems.

#22 Live Forever

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Posted 18 August 2007 - 12:48 AM

Ide go with out money first. Ide live in squalor for a milenia in order to continue living indefinently with freedom to pull myself from the squalor after that.

Being alive is a really big deal. Being alive is a really really big deal.

I agree completely. Money can't buy you immortality, but immortality gives you eternity to solve your money problems.

Plus the fact that relative wealth and quality of life (which is arguably priceless in a certain sense) is increasing as time passes. I would much rather be a middle class person today than a person at the very top of society a few hundred years ago.

#23 brokenportal

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Posted 18 August 2007 - 03:24 AM

The psychology is fascinating.  Nick Bostrom has compared it to Stockholm Syndrome, in which hostages cope with futility by befriending and supporting their captors, even if they are brutal killers.  So it is with biological aging.

If news arrived about a plague that was going to kill almost everyone older than 25 years old, the resources of the world would be mobilized to combat it.  Nobody would write rants about how there is too little evidence anything can be done to justify trying.  However a plague that disables and kills almost everyone older than 85 years old is another story.  Go figure.


Im going to use these comparisons too. The blatant and overwhelming obviousness that we should want to try to live longer if we can feels like a fabric of reality to me, like air, like organic material, like rock. I wish I could just grab somebody that is dismissing life extension and anti aging and shake them, like live on air and say, like in the quote above, "If a plague that killed everyone over 25 came along right now would the world mobalize to fight that? Tell me! Tell me! Dang it tell me!! Yes, you know they would! Now stop being stupid and at least TALK constructively about life extension if your not going to do anything else."

#24 niner

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Posted 18 August 2007 - 04:13 AM

Objectively speaking, aging is clearly a disease, many scientists already know it's curable...

No one knows it's curable. Some scientists know that it could be slowed. (e.g. Resveratrol, CR) Some scientists think that it could be cured, but no one "knows" that.



If you know anything about biology, you know that there is nothing intrinsically certain about aging. It is therefore curable. The question is simply how perfectly we need to understand everything about biology before we can implement it. But there is no doubt that aging is curable.

I was using the term "know" as in "has evidence to that effect".

#25 bgwowk

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Posted 18 August 2007 - 06:36 AM

I was using the term "know" as in "has evidence to that effect".

This issue drives to core of what "knowledge" and "evidence" mean. What is the evidence that AIDS can be cured? What is the evidence that humans can travel to Mars? What is the evidence that cryonics can work? Scientists can know that something is possible before the thing is actually done. This is because science is not just a collection of experiments and observations, but more powerfully, it is the models of reality that are inferred from experiment and observation.

It is possible to "know" that aging can be cured because according to scientific models of reality, people are collections of atoms, disease and aging are due to certain arrangements of atoms, and arrangements of atoms can be changed. The argument can be made more specific, but that's the core of the argument.

#26 kevin

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Posted 20 August 2007 - 11:47 PM

The same symptoms that when exhibited in progeric children cause horror and sympathy barely raise an eyebrow when seen in an older person. The psychology is fascinating.. just how self-anesthetized people can be.. sleepwalking because to acknowledge the true nature of beast that has us all within its maw can only drive one mad if one has naught to do about it.

These are different times.. and the beast better make short work of those of us who are waking.

#27 trh001

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Posted 25 August 2007 - 07:45 PM

"""Where do you find stuff like this?

[Provide a URL, if you haven't; call them up and help them navigate, if you have.]

It sounds like

[What "sounds like"? A citation might help. Be specific.]

they

[Are you referring to a specific person advocating a specific approach, or is this a global indictment designed to be vague?]

have more "theories"

[What are the quotes for? Are you implying that the theories (which, again, you don't reference specifically, so it's just hand waving) have less merit that others?]

than actual scientific evidence.

[The "actual" seems unnecessary as a qualifier, and care to take a stab at proving this negative? No? Ok, then critique a specific, otherwise it's just spin.]

I have a million theories

[Lol. I think not.]

of things that "could be"

[Again, why the quotes?]

but I have no scientific evidence to prove it.

[You weren't asked to supply any evidence, scientific or otherwise; de Grey has; critique it. If you can't critique it, then consider what your response is based on; lack of evidence, scientific, or otherwise.]

They also say in the Q&A section of things like overpopulation & such, and they just say we should worry about it when the time comes.

[This is the first valid concern you've raised. Congratulations. However, it *sounds* as if you've concerned about the process actually working. I'd not bother mounting an argument to avoiding SENS if you've assertion is that there's no evidence to support it. It seems less than efficient. ]

so... we are going to worry about using a product 30 years later.... I'd say worry about it now!

[Worry about what, now? You've asserted that there's nothing to worry about. See above.]

I mean, sure, MAYBE you can see yourself using such a product in the future, but can you see yourself funding a project for THIRTY FREAKIN YEARS, that might not even hit the market??

[What stocks do you own? If you invest in companies, the often make forward looking statements that don't leave investors with any payoff. Read the prospectus, invest according to your risk tolerance, etc. If you don't want to invest in SENS, that's a reasonable response, however, fund raising using forward looking statements is part of generating operating capital.]

They need money.

[Ah, so you've figured that out.]

It's a big, big, biiiiig idea that someone got,

[???]

and they reasoned out the possibilities,

[Sounds like you're suggesting that they might be on to something, counter to what you suggest earlier on.]

and used their own logic

[And thank heavens they chose not to use yours.]

to make it all sound professional-like,

[Well, if they used logic, as opposed to "logic", then perhaps it's plausibility isn't coincidental?]

but the information they have, the actual FACTUAL information that they have, is nothing new.

[So you agree it's actual, and factual, just not new. I think de Grey might agree. He's an advocate of taking action based upon a body of evidence that has, yes, been building for some time, in peer reviewed journals. You almost sound like you're talking yourself into it! [thumb] ]

It's a big way of convincing people like you to send them money for the next 30 years to fund some crazy idea they have.

[Ummmm, well, you just convinced me, quite eloquently that it's actual, and factual, and based upon information that's been around for some time. Why reverse that position and on what basis?]

Maybe I should make a website so that other people can pay for my crazy ideas,

[That would be counter to your best argument above. Base your ideas on actual, factual, information, and be prepared to have skeptics like yourself crop up like white on rice.]

while I sit and **** around with it for free...

[I think you're oversimplifying the accounting that just might be tied to these donations, and a certain level of transparency in what happens to the money, as well. Still, as noted above, no risk, no reward. ]

and if it doesn't work out, who cares?

[Well of course the people who donated money will care, but what in God's name is your point?]

not me, because i did it all for free."""

[I suspect a well crafted internet scam is not as easy to develop as you imply, but go ahead and give it a shot. Uh, but wouldn't it be funny if the people you dole out the capital to actually succeed despite your lack of good intentions? So, pick a worthwhile project, like improving on the lack of natural selection for the robust, aged, phenotype.]

#28 xalepos

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Posted 20 September 2007 - 12:36 PM

In response to Aegist's post:

If you know anything about biology, you know that there is nothing intrinsically certain about aging. It is therefore curable. The question is simply how perfectly we need to understand everything about biology before we can implement it. But there is no doubt that aging is curable.


I think there is a slight caveat. Aging may be curable but can the complexity of the brain ever be maintained indefinitely? I assume I can keep a car from oxidizing and running in near perfect condition if I replace it's various components and perform scheduled maintenance for extreme amounts of time, but can we stop the "aging" of the brain? If all curing aging does is turn me into an ageless vegetable it would be rather disappointing.

I assume there has been no scientific research on the human mind or an animal mind that is comparable and can be analyzed for the complex results of a human mind. If I'm wrong about this, can anyone post some relevant articles? Although I realize it's difficult to test aging on the brain when we have yet to live for hundreds of years.

#29 Aegist

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Posted 20 September 2007 - 01:03 PM

I think there is a slight caveat.  Aging may be curable but can the complexity of the brain ever be maintained indefinitely?

I think the complexity of the brain is a commonly assumed, rarely justified claim. The brain really is just repetitions of the same cell types over and over. If you can cure cellular aging, then it applies to the brain exactly the same as it applies to the body.

Don't let the complexity of "The Mind" confuse the simplicity or repetitive biological structures.

#30 Shannon Vyff

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Posted 20 September 2007 - 07:42 PM

Ok--I think I have a response no one said :)

Aubrey is not making money off it. 100% of the money going to Mprize is used for research into preventing age related degeneration, including many 'diseases'.




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