What will our cognitive existence be like in 20, 50, and 100 years?

By Bryan Johnson | 30 October 2018

(Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay)

I’m consumed with inquiring about what our cognitive existence could be like in 20, 50, and 100 years.

My take on where we’re heading: an evolutionary transition on a scale like the planet experienced from early hominids 2 million years ago to us today. Just like that last leap, this next evolutionary chapter will be sufficiently large that Earth’s minds don’t yet have words or concepts to explain it. It simply sits beyond our imagination.

Since we can’t see it, we can’t JFK it (go to the moon), MLK it (have a dream), or Babe Ruth it (call the home run). Instead the great explorers of our age will succeed when they close their eyes and set sail inwards.

For example, I wonder, will our brains be utilized for rational thought and knowledge mastery in the future, or something entirely foreign to us today?

We have Moore’s Law for computers, yielding staggering algorithmic gains. What laws and consequences will emerge for radical human improvement? Can we even identify them now?

Two quotes come to mind: “Talent hits a target no one else can hit; Genius hits a target no one else can see,” & “If you want to build a boat, teach others to yearn for the sea”.

What’s your take?

Reprinted with permission from the author.

Bryan JohnsonBryan Johnson is founder of Kernel, OS Fund and Braintree. In 2016, he founded Kernel, investing $100M to build advanced neural interfaces to treat disease and dysfunction, illuminate the mechanisms of intelligence, and extend cognition. Kernel is on a mission to dramatically increase our quality of life as healthy lifespans extend. He believes that the future of humanity will be defined by the combination of human and artificial intelligence (HI+AI). In 2014, Johnson invested $100M to start OS Fund which invests in entrepreneurs commercializing breakthrough discoveries in genomics, synthetic biology, artificial intelligence, precision automation, and new materials development. In 2007, he founded Braintree (acquired Venmo) which he sold to PayPal in 2013 for $800M. He is an outdoor-adventure enthusiast, pilot, and author of a children’s book, Code 7. You can follow his work at bryanjohnson.co, on his Future Literacy publication on Medium, and on Twitter.

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