Human body tech: from prostheses to immortality

As areas of technological progress go, human body modification is one of the most exciting — yet one of the most unpredictable in terms of potential impact. The benefits are undeniable. Losing a limb will no longer be a stigma — far from it. Mass production of artificial organs, from hearts to eyes, that completely replace and even surpass the originals will ensure a life that is both productive and long.

Body augmentation is sure to go beyond its purely medical application. It will be hard to resist the temptation to become stronger, prettier, or more suited for the work you do literally overnight — even if that means parting company with some lesser biological material. Jaws will drop when you enter the Body Shop and walk out transformed, or treat yourself to a new sensory organ that totally alters your perception of the world.

But will the augmented ones still be “real people”? How will these cyborgs be perceived by more conservative segments of society? Will we have mixed families, schools, hospitals, and sports teams? Or will humankind become stratified by type and number of augmentations, creating a new kind of class system? Will the rapidly progressing technologies prove vulnerable to external attack, turning the new titans into obedient puppets in the hands of biohackers? And will our electronic intestines become surveillance fodder for powerful corporations or the state?

And that’s even before we get to brain augmentation. Implants instead of smartphones will enable you to order pizza or chat with a colleague using the power of your thoughts, or create a memory store for your entire conscious life with guaranteed security and easy search and scrolling. Now you’ll remember where you put your keys not only the morning after, but two decades later. Nerve cells will become enhanced. And finally, somewhere in the distant future, humans will achieve immortality of consciousness — either with our minds stored in a machine or with the brain replaced by nanorobots.

But as ever, the greater the opportunities, the greater the risks. Concerns about personal data leaks will be supplanted by worries about thought privacy. Forget phishing sites; tomorrow’s hackers will lure victims into a fully immersive phishing reality, erase their memories, and construct botnets out of people.

I agree
I don't agree
Omar Chaparro Many of these will happen and any more we cannot even imahine now. Same as we did not imagine the smartphone or the internet or social media 40 yers ago
07 Aug 2023
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张仲宣 Unbelievable!
02 Jul 2022
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Truong Quang Vinh i don't think that by 2050 it would be this modern :v yikes
23 Jan 2022
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Robert Thumper Pruitt There is a lot of truth about the above, but one of the biggest things that I think will come out of this will be something similar to what you find in the movie 'Ghost in the Shell'. Immortality, or a very extended life, is nice and all, and it would allow you to explore all of your interests, but the definition of human society will also change as a result. The convienences will be nice though, as technology can become imbedded into us, vice us having to carry a lot of gadgets around just to do things. Of course, augmented reality and virtual reality will become more the norm vice the exception, it is only a matter of time. While older jobs will be replaced with automation, there will also be many new jobs that do not yet exist, so there will be a trade off. The real boon will be when this advancement allows humanity to finally leave planet Earth for expansion into space, whether into our own planetary system or further out. Time will tell, that is for sure.
20 Jul 2020
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YAĞIZ kahraman bu olmaz ölümsüzlük olabilir ama bu robot parçalarıyla olmaz ama robot parçalar insanı üst seviye koruyarak sadece yaşlılıktan ölmemizi sağlar ve ölümsüzlük için her canlıda olan bir gen var bu gen yavaş yavaş yok olur yok olduğunda da bizi öldürür bu geni sürekli üreticek bir canlı yapıp ona üretip insana aktara biliriz ama robot parçalarında bu olmaz yada bu canlıyı robot parçasına aktarıp robotta bizim ne kadar ömrümüz kaldığını anlayıp bize bu geni aşılayıp devam hayatımıza devam etmemizi sağlaya bilir
13 Jul 2020
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fatih taşçı YAĞIZ kahraman, bende sana katılıyorum.
11 Nov 2020
Yusuf Kağan Altaş Böyle birşey olsa bile hükümetler izin vermez ölümsüzlük ve artan bir nüfus böyle şey olmaz
23 May 2020
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Barış Arslan Yusuf Kağan Altaş, beden yoluyla ölümsüzlük tehlikeli olabilir ama zihinsel olarak ölümsüz olmak yani zihinlerimizin cihazlar yoluyla saklanması buna çözüm olabilir. Ama bu tür gelişmeler çok fazla ahlaki sorunu peşinden getirebilir. Birlikte görmek dileğiyle.
25 Oct 2020
10 Apr 2020
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Jacob S Scary as shit
16 Dec 2019
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okan baran maybe in the future but I thing 2070-80..
29 Nov 2019
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Chris Grant I am curious on the advancement that has already taken place and what or when they will offer for people to be in trials for some of the human enhancement tech. Can anyone shed some light on when they think this may happen?
24 Nov 2019
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Sherry SoFringe That’s already been done. It’s called uberization. Look it up. Chris Grant,
14 Apr 2022
Davina Marie Eve Elgazzar Humans have only survived and thrived because of technology and their intelligence. Humans are physically inferior to most animals and we have used machines to make us stronger. Physical augmentation is not much different than using a spear. It’s just using tools to enhance our lives and increase our survival. The human brain is just like a computer and the human brain being enhanced with technology would make us more human because enhancing ourselves with technology is the most human thing to do.
23 Nov 2019
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Darko Dimitrijevic None except Almighty God can make something like an eye. Everything what we make is just a try, commercialization, and so on. It could serve, but definitely not as a really true eye. But, there is something else what is coming out from Russia. So called programmed steam cells (I hope I wrote it correctly), which can replicate almost 99% of every tissue in human body. Just one injection of this one (nano-programmed) and your messing body part will start to grow as it would by baby - from the beginning - almost right away :)
08 Nov 2019
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gyggz Hi there! I'm not a futurologist either, but I can say that — despite the beliefs contained in this comment — yes, it could be theoretically possible to "make" an "eye". And depending on your definition, glasses could be considered something of a manufactured eye; they do enhance the vision of vision-impaired people — and "making" an eye would just be a bit fancier glasses. Really, a manufactured eye could theoretically be made by way of connecting a camera to the optic nerves, bypassing the human eye completely. But I am no oculist either, so this is just speculation from my current knowledge. Thank you for your understanding.
05 Apr 2023
gyggz Follow-up post! It was shown to the public about 2 weeks ago that yes, in fact, prosthetic eyes were just made that are better than actual human eyesight, although it hasn't been through human trials yet, I will do a follow-up post when it does.
16 May 2023