Thursday, February 19, 2009

Taking Life Sciences to an Extreme: From Homo Sapiens to Homo Evolutis

The ultimate reboot: when we learn to truly improve ourselves.

In a fascinating presentation at TED, Juan Enriquez describes current and future technologies used in genomics and other life sciences. It's not just about having cleaner robots around the house, but about improving humans through technology.

One good example he gives is hearing aids. Not that long ago they were these huge horns you had to hold next to your ear while the other person was shouting at you, and after a while they became small enough to wrap around the ear, and now we have small microphones that are inserted inside the ear. The next generation of hearing aids will undoubtedly be even better.

The fact that it won't be long after deaf people will be able to hear as well as the rest of us is of course exciting, but even more exciting is that after that, it won't be long before their hearing will be better than ours. And there's no reason why a person with normal hearing couldn't improve their hearing with this technology. The same applies to a lot of other things as well.

Enriquez also speaks about stem cells, tissue engineering, robotics, and the financial crisis. While I think Juan Enriquez definitely has a point about the current state of the economy, the most interesting part is at the last half of the video. So if you just want to see the cool new things happening in the world of science, you can skip straight to 07:30.

For more information on science and anti-aging, see these posts:

Anti-Aging in the Media: The Globe and Mail on Telomerase
Anti-Aging in the Media: 60 Minutes on Resveratrol
End Aging to End Anxiety: Filmmaker Jason Silva Talks about Immortality
Growing New Body Parts: Breakthroughs in Regenerative Medicine

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