August 16, 2007

Body Hacking and Rainbow’s End

Posted in computers, sci fi at 10:09 am by Mike Milinkovich

I am really very sorry that I missed Quinn Norton’s talk at OSCON on Body Hacking. But I did find a version of her slides, and Alasdair Allan’s blow-by-blow description of her talk.

I strongly suggest that people take a look at what she’s talking about, because this stuff is obviously happening and happening quickly. Any talk that ends with “What counts as human?” is worth a look. The moral and ethical conundrums are mind-bending.

The body hacking ideas are particularly interesting to me because I just finished reading Rainbow’s End…one of my summer sci-fi reading list. A wonderful book, with lots of very interesting ideas on what society will be like in a world of wearable computers and utterly ubiquitous wireless networking. Another great pick by Andreessen.

Then today, I also stumbled across a news article on the invention of paper nanotube batteries that are “…a prime candidate for being implantable inside the body…” because “…the battery may also be activated by the electrolytes found in human secretions and fluids“.

So my conclusion: Rainbow’s End has a great vision of the future, but likely didn’t go far enough. The future is likely to be far stranger…and much sooner…than people expect.


1 Comment »

  1. Nick Edgar said,

    In a similar vein, you might be interested in this episode of Futures in Biotech. Just listened to this on the way home last night. Kind of blew my mind.

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