DailyDirt: Get A Little Bit Older And A Little Bit Slower…

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

As our planetary odometer rolls over yet again (and we thankfully didn’t cease to exist after December 21st), lots of folks are coming up with new resolutions for happier, healthier lives… but what about just longer lives? Here are just a few links on extending our lifespans indefinitely.

If you’d like to read more awesome and interesting stuff, check out this unrelated (but not entirely random!) Techdirt post.

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Comments on “DailyDirt: Get A Little Bit Older And A Little Bit Slower…”

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bshock (profile) says:

Does Stockholm Syndrome make us love the Grim Reaper?

“Who wants to live forever, anyway?”

This perhaps sounds like a subtle “burden of proof” error, but the question can be even more misleading than that.

Let’s turn it around: “When would you like to die?”

Immediately we’re mired in assumptions. Even though the discussion is about the hypothetical possibility of “immortality,” there are still going to be a lot of people who will say something about wanting to die when they’re too feeble to live properly, when they’re in too much pain, etc. These are the people who have forgotten that we’re talking about a hypothetical situation.

Which may mean the hypothetical situation is just too poorly defined to have a fruitful discussion. Are we talking about some idiotically poor form of immortality like the Struldbrugs in “Gulliver’s Travels,” where you live forever but become progressively more feeble? Are we talking about a form of immortality where we retain a certain static amount of youth and continue living until a truck runs us over? Or do we mean a kind of nearly unimaginable physical immortality where almost nothing can damage or destroy us?

But despite this vagueness, the question of “When do you want to die?” retains some validity in itself. As far as we have ever seen, the only people who ever really want to die are those who are physically and/or mentally ill.

Healthy, happy people don’t want to die. Now, if you could be permanently healthy and always have at least the potential for being happy, when would you want to die?

You don’t know?

That’s probably the only reasonable answer. If I could remain physically and mentally healthy for an indefinite period, I don’t know how long I’d like to live either.

But I would damned well like to have the option of finding out through experience.

PT (profile) says:

Re: Does Stockholm Syndrome make us love the Grim Reaper?

Since most of the diseases that make people miserable and long for death are related to aging, extending lifetime by preventing senescence should take care of that problem nicely. Imagine living 80 or 90 years in the body of a 25 year old. Life would be pretty sweet.

Unfortunately, if such a technology were developed, only the most unsuitable people would be able to afford it.

Silent Bob says:

immortal jellyfish

Cell transdifferentiation in immortal jellyfish does not make them “immortal” in the sense we would want (individuals living forever). Neither does our ability to produce clones of animals make those individuals immortal. Persistence of genetic material is not at all the same as persistence of the memories and thought patterns that define an individual.

Anonymous Coward says:

No Living Forever for Me

Since we age (i.e. weaker muscles, joints, skin, eyesight, brain function etc…), there is no reason in the world I want to live forever. I for one believe in God and thus I am very comfortable in enjoying this gift of life for as long as he wills it and then promptly bowing out thankful for the privilege.

Besides, with the above mentioned aging process being what it is, I doubt I’ll be able to keep up my current activity, understanding and salary level past say 80 and I do not want to be a sickly, decrepit old person draining on my younger family members who are trying to experience life. Let me go – But yet increase the current medical state so that I age graceful and peacefully.

Kevin (profile) says:


Science has shown that even though we can prolong life it applies to the body only. There is no known way to prolong the life of our brain. The rate of dying brain cells increases with age.
The current aging population is already placing massive strains on pension funds, health and welfare systems sending many counties into debt.
Imagine the consequences if people lived for an average of an extra five years
I wouldn’t mind living for more years as long as both my body and mind were fully functioning and I could continue to learn and contribute to society and not rely on society to care for me.

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