Transhumanism Between Human Enhancement and Technological Innovation

Symposion: Theoretical and Applied Inquiries in Philosophy and Social Sciences 3 (1):79-88 (2016)
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Abstract

Transhumanism introduces from its very beginning a paradigm shift about concepts like human nature, progress and human future. An overview of its ideology reveals a strong belief in the idea of human enhancement through technologically means. The theory of technological singularity, which is more or less a radicalisation of the transhumanist discourse, foresees a radical evolutionary change through artificial intelligence. The boundaries between intelligent machines and human beings will be blurred. The consequence is the upcoming of a post-biological and posthuman future when intelligent technology becomes autonomous and constantly self-improving. Considering these predictions, I will investigate here the way in which the idea of human enhancement modifies our understanding of technological innovation. I will argue that such change goes in at least two directions. On the one hand, innovation is seen as something that will inevitably lead towards intelligent machines and human enhancement. On the other hand, there is a direction such as “Singularity University,” where innovation is called to pragmatically solving human challenges. Yet there is a unifying spirit which holds together the two directions and I think it is the same transhumanist idea.

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