The Universe Solved

 


Welcome Guest Search | Active Topics | Members | Log In | Register

Performance-Enhanced Athletes Options
TheArchitect
Posted: Saturday, May 28, 2011 12:36:20 PM
Rank: Advanced Member
Groups: Member

Joined: 10/18/2010
Posts: 41
Points: 123
Location: USA
Ryan Bradley over at Popular Science recently wrote an article addressing performance-enhancing body modifications including drugs, prosthetics and bionic limb extensions. It makes me wonder what future athletes will be like. What changes will future societies make in reaction to super human strength, enhanced vision and perhaps even intelligence boosters?

-TheArchitect
Neo
Posted: Tuesday, May 31, 2011 9:16:57 AM
Rank: Advanced Member
Groups: Member

Joined: 3/21/2008
Posts: 572
Points: 1,716
Location: Ireland
I believe that major changes will be required by society. I mean, take artificial red blood cells, which are said to be coming 'online' shortly. These are set to increase our aerobic capabilities to an unheard of degree. The person in the street will be able to avail of them, so it stands to reason that they will be available to athletes also. Blood doping? I'd say rather that it's our evolution in motion, that the goalposts are shifting.

There is no spoon.
jim
Posted: Tuesday, May 31, 2011 9:27:32 PM

Rank: Advanced Member
Groups: Member

Joined: 3/19/2008
Posts: 971
Points: 2,919
I completely understand Bradley's point and have also believed for a number of years now that "enhancement" is inevitable. Already, the age of those legendary numbers is past. Babe Ruth's season record of 60 home runs stood for 34 years and then some (given that it happened during a 154 game season). Roger Maris' record lasted for 37 for a 162 game season. Then, suddenly, in the age of steroids, Sammy Sosa hits 66 in 1998, Mark McGwire hits 70 the same year, and Barry Bonds hits 73 just 3 years later. Some day we will look back on 1998 as the end of the pre-performance enhancement era, at least as far as baseball is concerned. It is a train that has already left the station. Once steroids were illegal, steroid precursors were used. Is there really much of a distinction? Neo makes a great point about artificial red blood cells. There will certainly be many more examples of enhancements to come along in the future; chemical, biological, synthetic, nanotech, or other. At some point, the record keepers will run out of asterisks. The general public will be able to afford many more enhancements beyond simple breast augmentation or pec implants, including retinal implants, memory enhancements, artificial limbs, bio-feedback systems, and more. Soon, anyone with a few extra thousand dollars will be fitter, smarter, and better looking. Of course, it wouldn't make much sense to force professional athletes to refrain from the kinds of enhancements that the general public get to take advantage of. What will sports be like then?

I imagine that leagues comprised of pure unenhanced humans will become antiquated, like members of the Amish community. They will not attract the kinds of advertising dollars that the pro-enhancement leagues, started by the likes of Vince McMahon, will attract. Teams will still compete for players based on skill and stats, although those stats will then be due to a little more than just natural ability. The sports fans won't miss a beat.
ebb101
Posted: Wednesday, June 1, 2011 9:08:05 AM
Rank: Advanced Member
Groups: Member

Joined: 7/5/2010
Posts: 80
Points: 255
Beyond this... Can you imagine what neuro-enhancements would be capable of?
Super Intelligence? Super Psi?
That might be the next step on this journey.
TheArchitect
Posted: Thursday, June 2, 2011 4:19:30 PM
Rank: Advanced Member
Groups: Member

Joined: 10/18/2010
Posts: 41
Points: 123
Location: USA
Although science and technologies are growing at a rapid pace medical related science is actually developing a little slower. The human body is an exceedingly complicated collection of many complex interacting systems. I suspect that sports related performance boosters and beauty enhancements will be the most dominate body modifications for several years to come. I believe medical related modifications would soon follow. There is currently a large amount of research going into retinal photo-receptors and how this data is communicated to the brain. Its really quite interesting because they have recently found that the images are actually spatially compressed. In laymen terms this is essentially similar to saying your eye is making a compressed 'JPEG' image and sending it down the optic nerve cable. Although the implementations are very much quite different. There is also similar auditory research investigating the inner workings of the ear.

Unfortunately if you spend an entire weekend checking into how far this research has come... you will find that we seem to be complete amateurs at reverse engineering carbon based machines. I am not as optimistic as Kurzweil and I believe that we are several decades away from these types of visual/auditory/intelligence enhancements. I would postulate that it is much easier for humans to build a computer with these types of super abilities than it is to reverse engineer their own.

-TheArchitect
ebb101
Posted: Friday, June 3, 2011 3:47:50 AM
Rank: Advanced Member
Groups: Member

Joined: 7/5/2010
Posts: 80
Points: 255
Agreed. Not sure what the timeline is. Although, since I work with researchers, the problem isn't necessarily theoretical or even technological, especially in the case of human enhancement. The pace of medical related science is somewhat dictated by testing and absorption of the technology. I mean, not sure how many people are volunteering for experimental brain surgery. It's a little easier to test physical and cosmetic enhancements.
Theoretically there are several roads to neural enhancement, though. One of the most far-out approaches is brain-control interface (BCI) using, as you mentioned, AGI.
Users browsing this topic
Guest


Forum Jump
You cannot post new topics in this forum.
You cannot reply to topics in this forum.
You cannot delete your posts in this forum.
You cannot edit your posts in this forum.
You cannot create polls in this forum.
You cannot vote in polls in this forum.

Main Forum RSS : RSS

Universe Solved Theme Created by Jim Elvidge (Universe Solved)
Powered by Yet Another Forum.net version 1.9.1.2 (NET v4.0) - 9/27/2007
Copyright © 2003-2006 Yet Another Forum.net. All rights reserved.
This page was generated in 0.131 seconds.