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Transporting machine(actually cloning machine)

  1. Aug 9, 2006 #1
    What I would do is create a cloning machine but sell it as a transporting machine. Do you get it? Not yet? Lemme explain it. You wake up, you go to school by transporting you, what is actually happening is it kills you and clone you to the school, you return form the school the same way. So billions of poeple day every day!!!1 WIcked isn't it?
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 10, 2006 #2
    Legal nightmare.

    What happens if there is a glitch, and it doesn't "kill" the original after it's made the clone. Then there are two of "you", with identical memories and history up to the point of cloning, each claiming to be you and each with a right to life. Killing either one would then be "murder" by anyone's standard. What do you do?

    Would keep the lawyers busy for a long time.

    Best Regards
  4. Aug 10, 2006 #3


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    LMAO. Clone the damn lawyers, and make a small mistake.

    Hey Super: I believe it was Penrose that mentions something like this in his book "An Emporer's New Mind". It sticks in my mind as being a fairly interesting discussion. I might be able to dig it up and post it. Anyway, this seems to address the 'me' problem of consciousness <I think that phrase is already taken though> which is very difficult to define accurately. I'm not sure how to define it in fact. However, if we started by considering there is a sensation of being one self, a sensation of being me, then is this inconsistant with doing what you're suggesting - destroy one and rebuild the person?

    One thing is that our bodies are actually doing this exact thing all the time. We are patterns that replace each molecule in our body in something like 7 years. The "me" that existed 7 years ago has been replaced, molecule for molecule, albeit with some additional defects which result in wrinkles and other deformities! lol
  5. Aug 10, 2006 #4
    Guess wasn't my unique idea after all. Seems to good to be true.
  6. Aug 11, 2006 #5
    Yes Penrose does discuss it, but from what I remember he dismisses it because he doesn't believe it is possible to duplicate a consciousness. The thought experiment does have alarming implications for anyone who believes in the "uniqueness" of conscious identity - hence the reason that Penrose dismisses it.

    Best Regards
  7. Jul 9, 2008 #6
    why not think of transporting your 3d working image and you are still in your bed.
    may be a working holographic transfer or so.......hey its interesting
  8. Jul 9, 2008 #7
    Watch the movie "The Prestige".
  9. Jul 9, 2008 #8


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    This is precisely the plot of a short story called "Think Like a Dinosaur" by James Patrick Kelly. I thought it raised some fascinating questions about what it means to be the disposable original.

    Also, Robert J.Sawyer's "Mindscan".
  10. Jul 10, 2008 #9
    That's interesting. So Penrose has the point of view that consciousness can't be completely described in terms of matter.
    Penrose was also once of the opinion that time began at the Big Bang, and there was no time before that.
    But he changed opinion about that.

    I would think that copying a person atom by atom the resulting new person would not know any better then he was the same person as the original.

    Isn't there also a hypothetical technique called 'uploading' which aims at preserving one's mind in the exact configuration (I take it that it would scan every neuron in your brain) you once was onto some digital medium (where it could be stored indefinately, untill there is a technique for 'downloading' ).
  11. Jul 10, 2008 #10


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    Yeeaaah. Even as an atheist, I confess have difficulty with this.

    I imagine stepping off the transporter and trying not to think of myself as simply a very carfeully arranged bunch of atoms that were, until two seconds ago, floating around in a plasma bottle, and that my arrangement of atoms simply makes me think I've been around 44 years, when in fact those are simply memories implanted there in the "pasting" process. Every molecule in my body and every thought in my brain is really only two seconds old.
  12. Jul 10, 2008 #11
    Greg Bear came up with an interesting variation on this. A character creates a duplicate of himself for multitasking. Later when its tasks are complete he merges their memories and disposes of the copy. This wasn't the point of the story though, just a thing that happens in the book as a matter of course for the advanced society he describes. Many of the people in the society are fully digital minds (all people being saved in city memory when their corpus expires) and some are allowed extra 'incarnations' in flesh as needed. The persons in city memory also make 'partials' to send on errands.
  13. Jul 10, 2008 #12


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    Yeeah. Wasn't Greg Bear inspired to write this after watching some Michael Keaton movie? :rolleyes:
  14. Jul 11, 2008 #13
    Greg Bear "Eon" series...
    "Eon" (1985)
    "Eternity" (1988)
    "Legacy" (1995)

    Micheal Keaton movie...
    "Multiplicity" (1996)

  15. Jul 11, 2008 #14


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    I quite enjoyed Eon, but I have not read the sequels. I am more interested in First Contact type stories like 'Rama' etc. I'm sort of presuming the Eon sequels read more like Stargate: The TV Series.
  16. Jul 11, 2008 #15
    Its a rather off topic but **** it.
    The second is quite a departure from the first. It takes place on a planet where Bear illustrates an idea of competing 'intelliegent' ecosystems (gaia hypothesis like) where human invaders/naderite expatriates (via 'The Way') have upset the balance. Olmy is the main character.
    The Third returns to the issue of 'The Way' and the war with the Jarts (rather illusory in Eon). Which yes is somewhat StarGate like. Though his description of an alternate earth where Alexander's empire survived is rather fun.

    I've become a Greg Bear fan. I've not heard of 'Rama' but know Sagan's 'Contact' from the movie. For the most part Bear's sci fi is more 'soft boiled' than 'hard' but certainly rooted in actual science. He actually wrote two fantasy novels [together called] 'Songs of Earth and Power' which you might find interesting if you like fantasy at all.
  17. Jul 11, 2008 #16


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    Cool. Then I will read it.

    As in: Clarke's "Rendevous with ... " It is a top 50 must read.

    I like piquing peoples' interest in it by describing it as taking place in 'a fairly non-descript asteroid that's 100 miles in diameter, 200 miles long on the outside, and 500 million light years long on the inside.'
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