Cybernews podcast #09: who wants to live forever

The effort and experiments made in the quest for a longer life are no less incredible than the Curious Case of Benjamin Button. Even if you could, would you want to live, let’s say, for 200 years?

There’s probably not a living soul who would like to experience what Brad Pitt's character Button went through. But reversing aging doesn’t seem like science fiction anymore. In fact, Harvard researchers even demonstrated that it is possible to reverse cellular aging and restore cellular function. This made us here at Cybernews wonder, how far are we from “curing” aging?

But, as my Freddie Mercury sang, “Who wants to live forever?”

Cybernews journalists are back with a new episode of our podcast “Through a Glass Darkly.” This time, we’re discussing whether and how technology can lead to a better quality of life and longevity in general. In this 52-minute episode, we’ll dive headlong into topics like:

  • How to keep track of one’s biological age
  • Horror stories of failed attempts to preserve one’s body for a better future
  • The (de)motivation of living twice as long
  • Tech-enabled biohacking for a better quality of life
  • How data can help you learn more about your own body and mind
  • Why governments aren’t interested in you living forever
  • What does religion and longevity have in common, if anything?

For me personally, the prospect of old age is both exciting and terrifying. On the one hand, I’ll get to spend my days however I want, freely speaking my mind, and have no ducklings to take care of.

On the other hand, I might be lonely with no one to talk to me or to help me with chores. I’ll probably be poor, despite my investments into pension funds, and be forced to sign up for various charities. I might also be working until the day I die since an aging population will force governments to prolong the retirement age even further.

Some more radical ideas might seem more promising and exciting. Like the one that cryogenics enthusiasts are promoting. Imagine being frozen just as Captain America was for nearly 70 years. Do you think you’ll wake up to a better world? Or instead like the one like in Avengers, about to go through an apocalypse?

The good thing is that even if there’s a scientific breakthrough within our lifetime, governments surely won’t allow us to live for 200 years because the economy as we know it would collapse.

The best case scenario is that you – yes, the same you, with the same childhood traumas, the same superstitions, you who’d already traveled the world and maybe the moon – would have to work for 150 years before retiring. And what kind of life is that?

If I were to live over 100 years, I’d at least want to live life as adventurously as the dwarfs in The Hobbit did. If I don’t get to explore everything the world has to offer, what kind of life would that be?

All dreams aside, tech comes in handy in the present day, helps us to keep our exercise routines going, monitors our heart rates and other vital functions, and even calls an ambulance for us when we fall. That’s a good start towards, if not a longer life, then certainly a better life.

What does “through a glass darkly” mean?

While our primary goal is to maintain objectivity, we acknowledge our inherent humanity as we strive to provide our readers, viewers, and now listeners with a comprehensive understanding of the ever-expanding cyber landscape. This is precisely why we chose the name for our podcast, "Through a Glass Darkly," drawing inspiration from the biblical expression used by the Apostle Paul, signifying a limited clarity when it comes to envisioning the future.

Our discussions often involve speculation about what lies ahead, eliciting both excitement and trepidation regarding the tech evolution or revolution. As we maintain a strong emphasis on cybersecurity, we find ourselves naturally inclined toward a somewhat "doomsday" perspective, perceiving the world through lenses shaded in darkness rather than rose-tinted hues.

More from Cybernews:

Tech regulation in Europe: are citizens missing out?

Pentagon investigating “critical compromise” of comms – media

Hackers threaten to auction off DNA patient records from Oklahoma hospital

OpenAI, Microsoft, Google, Anthropic launch forum for safe AI development

Twitter dark mode will be the default, Musk says

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