Immortality only 20 years away says scientist

Scientist Ray Kurzweil claims humans could become immortal in as little as 20 years’ time through nanotechnology and an increased understanding of how the body works.

The 61-year-old American, who has predicted new technologies arriving before, says our understanding of genes and computer technology is accelerating at an incredible rate. He says theoretically, at the rate our understanding is increasing, nanotechnologies capable of replacing many of our vital organs could be available in 20 years time. Mr Kurzweil adds that although his claims may seem far-fetched, artificial pancreases and neural implants are already available.

Mr Kurzweil calls his theory the Law of Accelerating Returns. Writing in The Sun, Mr Kurzweil said: "I and many other scientists now believe that in around 20 years we will have the means to reprogramme our bodies’ stone-age software so we can halt, then reverse, ageing. Then nanotechnology will let us live for ever.

"Ultimately, nanobots will replace blood cells and do their work thousands of times more effectively.

"Within 25 years we will be able to do an Olympic sprint for 15 minutes without taking a breath, or go scuba-diving for four hours without oxygen.

"Heart-attack victims – who haven’t taken advantage of widely available bionic hearts – will calmly drive to the doctors for a minor operation as their blood bots keep them alive.

"Nanotechnology will extend our mental capacities to such an extent we will be able to write books within minutes.

"If we want to go into virtual-reality mode, nanobots will shut down brain signals and take us wherever we want to go. Virtual sex will become commonplace. And in our daily lives, hologram like figures will pop in our brain to explain what is happening.

“So we can look forward to a world where humans become cyborgs, with artificial limbs and organs.”

What do you think about this? And why does this type of stuff always make me feel uncomfortable…?

Yeah scientists also claimed we would have flying cars by now. Where’s my Jetson-mobile?

Also, I sincerely hope I am dead before what this guy is referring to becomes reality. I do think it is coming, but hopefully not anytime soon.

He’s 61? He’s giving it 20 years? Sounds like somebodies afraid of death.

It strikes me as a lot of horsefeathers. People have been making predictions of scientific marvels that didn’t come true ever since I can remember.

What could legitimately give a person the crawls is the assumption that people are NOT programmed psyhchologically and spiritually to live only a certain length of time. Let’s picture for a minute what life would be like at one’s 10,000th birthday, after one had eaten every delicacy the world had to offer, numerous times, had seen it all, had read every book, watched every permutation of every dramatic theme through some entertainment medium, had swum at every beach, had every conversation, and so on. Would that be a rewarding life?

And, of course, think of a world in which Hitler, Stalin, Mao and every robber baron and serial killer who ever lived, lived forever.

I’m sure, at the hour of my death, I will feel many an attachment to this world that I would be loathe to see pass. But I truly cannot picture myself enjoying my 10,000th birthday on this earth.

poppycock. Puny humans have absolutely NO idea how the brain really works. And it’s the brain that really seems to me to be the limiter here.

What good is a perfect 24 year old body if you just aren’t THERE anymore? Seems to me like this will just be more ‘heroic effort’ technology to stave off the inevitable.

No thanks.

poppycock ,we were supposed to have flying cars,robotic everything .

Flying cars already exist but people think there are enough problems with land based cars, so they don’t want the extra headache of having cars dropping out of the sky.

Basic humanoid robots exist but they have to be partly remotely operated.

Mr. Kurzweil follows statistical trends. He does not, as far as I know, understand how the mind works. It is more likely that an artificial brain may appear in 20 years, but immortality? No.


Sometimes one is tempted to think there is a lot less scientific progress than is commonly assumed.

At the turn of the 19th/20th centuries, people were going around in horse-drawn conveyances. By the 1920s, internal combustion engines had pretty well replaced them; for personal transportation, short-haul freight and farming. If one has ever driven, say, a Model A, one realizes that while cars now have better heat, better lights, better engines, computerized this and that, the basic configuration and functioning is really very little different. Tractors are a lot bigger now and have air conditioning, but their basic structure isn’t much different from my 1948 Case, or, for that matter, a tractor circa 1920.

At a library, I bought some old books just for decor, including one on surgery, dated 1931. Looking at the procedures, I see they’re not really very different from procedures now. Sure, there are antibiotics now, MRIs and all that. But their anatomical understanding and what they actually did in most surgeries is hardly different from what they are now.

Computers are great. They really are. But I also remember the old “window posting machine” I ran as a teenager in a bank. It was mechanical rather than electronic, but the notions behind it were the same, and it did much the same thing banking computers do now for a lot of things. And the 101010101010 way computers work isn’t much different from the concepts behind those old mechanical machines. It was still “on/off/on/off” in long, long series. Not really different conceptually.

I recall reading all the modern things they had on the Titanic. Electric this, electric that, refrigerated this, refrigerated that. Heated this, air conditioned that. Not much different from the stuff one finds on a ship now. Sure, there are all kinds of navigational instruments (computer stuff again, radar) now. But the basic way it worked and the amenities were not much different from what they are now.

There is a lot of difference between a Boeing 747 and an old Ford Trimotor, but, except for the jets, they worked about the same, and did about the same things.

Our homes have AC and some electronic things and some electrical things. But some homes had things very similar to them back in 1920. Construction of homes isn’t much different. Delivery of water and electricity, disposal of sewage, use of natural gas. None of that stuff is new at all. That’s why you can take an old home and “modernize” it without all that much trouble.

And yes, physicists have discovered black holes and supernovae and all kinds of things that don’t affect our lives at all, and have thought up quantum mechanics (pretty old, though) that might allow for some of this nanotechnology people like to talk about. (And probably did in 1938 as well.)

One gets tempted to think that except for a few things; chiefly electronics and pharmacology, (rocketry has changed a few things, but not many) there were more changes attending the turn of the 19th/20th centuries than the 20th/21st.

We have conducted a “war on cancer” for how many decades now? There have been improvements, for sure. But people still die of it.

And this guy thinks immortality, wrought by technology, is only 20 years away?

Immortality now or later in heaven. I think I will take later.

This guy is a kook. But if I were to take him seriously for just a second… A lot of tv shows and movies feature people who have immortality. And they all are infinitely sad, and some of them wish they could die. At least I would be that way. Imagine how terrible it would be to be 10,000 years old and your only way to die is suicide? :frowning: How terrible.

People really should stop being afraid of death. I actually look forward to it, with anxiety but I really am excited to make it to heaven finally! I still have a long time (I’m 17) but when my day comes it will be the best day of my life. :slight_smile: I mean we spend our whole lives preparing for it… we should be ecstatic about being with God!!

We should also try to convert people like this scientist :confused:

I think instead of trying to be immortal here on Earth, we should be finding ways to extend life by finding cures for horrible diseases, and by living healthier lifestyles in a healthier environment.

I seem to recall 20 years ago as a student that similar over exuberant claims were made by scientists of that day on finding an immortality gene or something like that.

Ridiculous. Scientists, brain surgeons to this day are not completely sure how the most complex organ in the human body - the brain - operates exactly: i.e. what neurohormones and neurotransmitters are responsible for what exactly and in what quantities. How to conquer pain? How to contain violent behaviour, epilepsy, etc.

And there is always unfortunately that probability that lies with all mankind since the Fall: man’s ingenuity in thinking up ever more super-technological ways with the advance of science to kill off one other. World War One showed how absolutely inhuman war had become. When man conquers war and violence, one may get an opportunity to advance longevity somewhat, perhaps. Man will never conquer war and violence without God and that’s the way it was, is, and will be until JC returns. Waiting. :slight_smile:

Really well said guys :thumbsup:

I have always found science fiction to be a fun read. Even if the scientific marvels are developed, man will never be "immortal.

Nano technology is still only theory, I don’t think any nano bots have successfully been created yet, so 20 years seems a bit early.

I don’t expect this technology to exist for quite a while, but if/when it does a lot of things worry me about it. But right now this is just science fiction. If anyone’s ever played the video game Metal Gear Solid, they have nanomachines that work in the same way.

As a previous person said, why would someone even want to be immortal anyways?
On one hand, people are so afraid of death, but on the other side, they believe they have a right (or even duty) to die. Of course, both stem from the idea that there is nothing beyond life in this world. :frowning:

Technically, man has always been immortal. His soul lives on even after his death and in a sense is even more real than he was when he had a physical body. So why settle for this world when you can truly hope for an even greater one?

Yay for illusionary progress!

I agree. And wouldn’t we face a population crisis if we were immortal? People need to die so that there’s room/resources for new people. How would it work if people kept being born but no one ever died?

Immortality would be a curse in our sinful state(original sin) .
Having children would become increasingly unpopular. as well-where you put everyone?(As Hobble put it)
The whole fabric of the family and our life itself on earth would be changed- and not for the better.
This life is ordered around new life taking over and older ones passing on, after a life lived of course.
God is his great wisdom barred Adam and Eve from the Tree of Life in the book of Genesis
so they wouldn’t live forever in their sinful state- as He knew in His wisdom it would be an awful curse!(Hell on earth!) Perhaps that’s what the Book of Revelation means when it talks about those wanting to die but death flees from them?

I have no problems towards advancements towards a longer, healthier natural longevity.
I’m looking foward to my resurrected body and living forever with God in Heaven!!

Nanotechnology is very real:

The military is heavily involved. There will be advances, but immortality? No. Terminator type robots? Yes, unfortunately.


You beat me to it. this is excatly what i was thinking about posting when i came into this thread. I dont think this person is afraid of death. Its just he is a “futurist” and its his job to make up news for slow news days.
But it poses a interesting question. Would you do it? I would. One of things im peeved about dying is. that i will miss out on all the cool stuff the future has to offer. So i think it would be cool to get to see it. But you wouldn’t cheat death though. Even if it gave us all that it promised and more. you still have to conten with accidents, mother nature etc. So sooner or later , you still have to face your maker.

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