soulMerlin’s Almanack

Archive for the 'Artificial Intelligence' Category

…the children of a lesser god

Blade runner is the movie based on the novel by Phillip K Dick, “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep”

Rutger Hauer plays Roy Batty – an android, with a limited lifespan,(he dies in the scene above), but who nevertheless possesses emotion and self-awareness – Hauer’s role made him a cult icon.

I remember walking towards Hauer in a backstreet in London, some years ago. He was magnetic…big and tall, with piercing ice-blue eyes. I thought he was like a giant, brutal Paul Newman…perfect casting.

Synthetic life is now upon us. Only yesterday the press proclaimed the creation of an artificial reproducing cell…artificial DNA, typed on a computer and inserted into the hollowed out shell of a bacteria…

Is it right or wrong? Is it simply inevitable that science will finally be able to create life – intelligent, self-aware life – from scratch?

Or does possible distaste depend on a localized God…who does God’s work

What about  a universal “God” which includes ourselves and everything – plants, animals, rocks –  even ‘synthetic’ life’.

If we are part of that “All”, does that allow us to ‘play’ God?

I think humanity will inevitably create synthetic living creatures from the living cells that scientists have just begun to create. We have always made images of ourselves and our fellow creatures – perhaps reaching for the  immortality that Rutger Hauer’s Android desired.

Will they go to Heaven when they die? Will they re-incarnate?

Or will they just be the children of a lesser god?*

henry

*Children of a Lesser God is the title of a play by Mark Medoff

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