Joseph Coates' Review of
Kurzweil's 'End of Death' Overture
مرور جوزف کوتس از اوورتور «پایان مرگ» کرزوایل
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I met the late Joseph Coates 15 years ago in the summer of 2007 in a meeting in Bethesda near Washington, when WFS was preparing for its 2008 convention. On June 27, 2007, I wrote about my observation of that meeting in an article entitled 'Kurzweil, Harry Potter & Futurist Party,' and the second edition of that article was published more than 10 years later on Oct 22, 2018. Joseph Coates was active in all three areas of futurism till his death in 2014. Two years before the WFS meeting of 2007, Ray Kurzweil's book Singularity is Near was published in 2005, where Kurzweil presented his reasons for the 'End of Death' overture. At the time, late Joseph Coates published an interesting review of Ray's book. Unfortunately I do not have a copy of it at hand right now and I am just writing this note from memory. Joe applauded Kurzweil's work and at the same time noted the need to address social justice that this author together with Ray, have also addressed all these years by seeking solutions commensurable with the 21st Century advancements. But there was another interesting observation in late Joseph Coates' review and that was about the topic of 'End of Death.' As the readers may recall I had a one-hour-interview in 2007, in Persian, discussing Kurzweil's 'End of Death' overture, but unfortunately it was never translated to English, although I even published highlights of the interview in an article in Persian, entitled 'AI, Singularity, and End of Death,' which again was never translated to English. My thoughts on the topic of 'End of Death,' as explained less than 3 months ago, is exactly the same as what Ray Kurzweil has presented in his book Singularity is Near. But Joseph Coates brought up an issue in his review that has been on my mind ever since I met him. He said that as we get older, we prepare ourselves to come to terms with death and he died in his 90's and am sure had personal understanding of this human consciousness issue which is related to our biological reality! Now if we change our attitude towards death and think of it as ended, it may cause us various consequences that is really in the realm of psychology which is not my area of interest! What I like to note here is actually more than making the readers aware of such a critique of Ray's optimism! In fact, what astonishes me is that Ray has continuously worked on this topic not only in areas of Artificial Intelligence but also in various fields of Genetics and Medicine. Ray Kurzweil in the Boston Area, has been involved with more leading-age research projects related to cancer, heart disease and other deadly diseases than many leading-edge Oncologists and Cardiologists. 'End of Death' overture has not just been a slogan for Ray in his 2005 book, rather he has been working on it on several paths to make it happen ever since he was hurt by the death of his father at an early age! I look forward to reading the sequel to Ray's 2005 book entitled 'Singularity is Nearer' which is expected to be released by the end of this year.
Hoping for a democratic and secular futurist republic in Iran,
February 9, 2022
For a Secular Democratic & Futurist Republican Party in Iran