15 March 2015

Family Stories from a 'Library of Souls'

In the midst of all the depressing stories on cable news, CNN's Fareed Zakaria's Global Public Square had an inspiring special show today that I wish could be mandatory viewing for all voting Americans and all American politicians. The show encourages support of research "to power America's future." And the show even has a genealogy angle, while all of the segments focus on my other favorite subjects, science and technology. "Moonshots for the 21st Century" is the title of the special. I highly recommend watching this when it repeats or using the podcast / iTunes links at the bottom of the show's webpage.

Each segment focuses on a new idea that might make the future of America and our world better in the same way as the things we learned preparing for the trip to the moon did in the 1960s. I found all of the segments interesting, but was fascinated by the one that applies to family history.

The segments are
  1. Sending Astronauts to Mars
  2. 3-D Printing a Human Heart
  3. Creating a Star on Earth
  4. Flying from New York to London in One Hour
  5. Mapping the Human Brain

In the segment on mapping the human brain, Dr. Michio Kaku, theoretical physicist and author of The Future of the Mind (and one of my favorite living scientists), talked about the challenges in mapping the human brain the way we have mapped the human genome.

Kaku said, "we've learned more about the brain in the last ten and fifteen years than in all of human history combined." He went on to say we can now do things that were thought preposterous ten or fifteen years ago. After discussing some of the ideas seen in recent science fiction movies and how those things may become possible, Kaku said, "someday we may have a library of souls ... One day our descendants may have a conversation with us because we live forever in a library of souls."

I'm not sure if I think that is more creepy or exciting—it is both of those things to me. So now I have to add to my to-do list not only creating a book about my ancestors that will be interesting enough to get my descendants to read—I have to think about how I want my mind to present this to my descendants from my captured brain after I am gone. Hmmm. I can edit what I put in a book or article. How do I edit my brain to be sure my thoughts are presented the way I want after my body is gone and my brain is stored in a computer?

To cite this blog post:
Debbie Parker Wayne, "Family Stories from a 'Library of Souls'," Deb's Delvings Blog, posted 15 March 2015 (http://debsdelvings.blogspot.com/ : accessed [date]).

© 2015, Debbie Parker Wayne, CG, CGL, All Rights Reserved

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