Transavatars
Bainbridge (William Sims)
Source: More & Vita-More - The Transhumanist Reader, Part II - Chapter 9
Paper - Abstract

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Summary1

  1. Enhancement of human abilities need not require modification of the person's biological body. Avatars in virtual worlds are a contemporary example, and in future teleoperation of personal robots or entirely fresh alternatives may become popular.
  2. Transhumanist philosophers have suggested varied viewpoints of simulation, consciousness, and existence, and notably argued whether humans could or do reside within a simulation.
  3. Avatars point out to us that enhancement is not merely a matter of increasing the effectiveness of a person in taking action, but also can mean an altered form of consciousness that expands opportunities for experiences, and escape from the conventional system of moral constraints.
  4. Especially noteworthy is the fact that one individual may have many different avatars, thereby becoming a multiplex or protean personality.
  5. And, lastly, the users have and will most likely consider building posthumous avatars of Virtual Worlds and develop unique relationships with their human users.

Editors’ Abstract2
  1. William Bainbridge points out that enhancement of human abilities can be accomplished in several ways, and need not require modification of the person’s biological body.
  2. We can already make use of avatars in virtual worlds and, in future, we are likely to have the option of teleoperation of personal robots.
  3. Enhancement means increasing the effectiveness of a person in taking action, but avatars show that it can also mean "an altered form of consciousness that expands opportunities for experiences, and escape from the conventional system of moral constraints."
  4. Part of the human condition (except in rare pathological cases) has been the equation: one body = one person. Now we can already see that one individual may have many different avatars, which is a step along the way to possibly becoming a multiplex or protean personality.
  5. Bainbridge also considers how users can build posthumous avatars in virtual worlds and develop unique relationships with their human users.



In-Page Footnotes

Footnote 1: Taken from Wiley OnLine Library.

Footnote 2: Taken from "More (Max) & Vita-More (Natasha) - Transhumanism: Human Enhancement: The Somatic Sphere - Introduction".


Text Colour Conventions (see disclaimer)

  1. Blue: Text by me; © Theo Todman, 2019
  2. Mauve: Text by correspondent(s) or other author(s); © the author(s)



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