In his book
Radical Evolution: The Promise and Peril of Enhancing Our Minds, Our
Bodies—and What It Means to Be Human,
Joel Garreau discusses the future of humanity.
is broken into sections, among of which are The Curve, The Heaven Scenario,
The Hell Scenario, and Transcendence. Garreau interviews two individuals, Ray Kurzweil,
supporting The Heaven Scenario, and Bill Joy, a supporter of The Hell Scenario. Through
discussions with Kurzweil and Joy, Garreau looks at the future of humanity, and what
Transhumanism could mean in the next stage of human evolution.
An integral part of both The Heaven Scenario and The Hell Scenario is Transhumanism.
Jay Hughes, the executive director of the World Transhumanist Association, avers that
Transhumanism comes directly from the traditional humanist perspective. The Transhumanist
movement started in the 1970s, and looks to improve upon human intellectual, mental and
physical capacities. Those involved in the Transhumanist movement also seek to eliminate
disease, suffering, disability, and to extend the human lifespan. Furthermore, Transhumanism is
tied into the idea of a “post-human,” or a being that can no longer be recognized as human
according to the current fundamental ideal. To those following the Transhumanist movement,
“‘Transhumanism’ is their description of those who are in the process of becoming posthuman—
the metamorphosis they believe, not without good reason, some of us are entering right now.”
Moore’s Law is a component of Transhumanism. Moore’s Law, named after Gordon E.
Moore, states that “the power of information technology will double every 18 months, for as far
as the eye can see.” (49) To highlight this process, Garreau provides that the 27
came in 2002, with a billion-transistor chip. Garreau says, “Twenty-seven consecutive doublings
of anything man-made, an increase of well over 100 million times—especially in so short a
period—is unprecedented in human history.
Radical Evolution: The Promise and Peril of Enhancing Our Minds, Our Bodies
—and What It Means to Be Human
, New York: Broadway Books, 2005