soul

The Cult of Kurzweil: Will Robots Save Our Souls?

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Scientists like roboticist Hans Moravec and inventor Ray Kurzweil advocate uploading our minds into robots or virtual reality so that we can live forever. They believe that our minds can be replicated outside of our brains if we simply copy the pattern of neuro-chemical activity taking place in our bodies. That pattern, rather than the brains in which the pattern takes shape, “is” the personality. If it can be transferred to a digital medium, it can be made immortal. Surpassingly intelligent robots—our Mind Children, according to Moravec—will populate the universe, converting physical reality into a cosmic interweb of thinking machines.

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Confession Fail: iPhone App Controversy Muddies the Sacramental Waters

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The Confession app relies on a certain level of theological understanding, liturgical compliance, and spiritual will that we might be hard-pressed to find in even a relatively sophisticated believer. This is not entirely a failure of catechism or human will, I suspect. Rather, it is a continuation of what I have seen as a failure of mainline Catholic and Protestant pilgrims into new digital territories to grasp the social nature of new media.

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