Digital immortality

Digital immortality (or ” virtual immortality “) is the hypothetical concept of storing (or transferring) a person’s personality in more sustainable media, ie, a computer, and allowing it to communicate with people in the future . The result might look like an avatar behaving, reacting, and thinking like a person on the basis of that person’s digital archive. [1] [2] [3] [4] After the death of the individual, this avatar could remain static or continue to learn and develop autonomously.

A considerable portion of transhumanists and singularitarians place great hope into the belief That They May Become immortal by the year 2045 [5] by Creating one gold Many non-functional copies of Their biological brains, thereby leaving their “biological shell”. These copies may then “live eternally” in a version of digital “heaven” or paradise. [6] [7]

The realism of the concept

The futurist Ian Pearson believes that humans will achieve a kind of virtual immortality by 2050. [8]

The National Science Foundation has awarded a half-million-dollar grant to the universities of Central Florida at Orlando and Illinois at Chicago to explore how researchers might use artificial intelligence , archiving, and computer imaging to create conviction, digital versions of real people possible first step toward virtual immortality. [9]

The Digital Immortality Institute explores three factors necessary for digital immortality. First, at whatever level of implementation, avatars require guaranteed Internet accessibility. Next, avatars must be what users specify, and they must remain so. Finally, future representations must be secured before the living users are no more. [10]

The aim of Dmitry Itskov ‘s 2045 Initiative is to create technologies enabling the transfer of an individual’ s personality to a non – biological carrier, and extending existence, including to the point of immortality. [11]


Reaching digital immortality is a two-step process:

  1. archiving and digitizing people,
  2. making the avatar live

Archiving and digitizing people

Selon Gordon Bell and Jim Gray from Microsoft Research , retaining every person HAS That conversation ever Heard is already realistic: it needs less than a terabyte of storage (for adequate quality). [12] [13] The speech or text recognition technologies are one of the biggest challenges of the concept.

A second possibility would be to archive and analyze social Internet use to map the personality of people. By analyzing social Internet use during 50 years, it would be possible to model a society ‘s culture, a society’ s way of thinking, and a society ‘s interests.

Rothblatt envisions the creation of “mindfiles” – collections of data from all kinds of sources, including the photos we upload to Facebook, the discussions and opinions we share on forums or blogs, and other social media interactions that reflect our life experiences and our unique self. [2] [14]

Richard Grandmorin [15] summarized the concept of digital immortality by the following equation: “semantic analysis + social Internet use + artificial intelligence = immortality”.

Some find that photos, videos, soundclips, social media posts and other data. [16] [2] [17] [14]

Susanne Asche states:

As for a person-centric repository containing a person sees, hears, says, or engenders over, his or her, including photographs, videos, audio recordings, movies, television shows, music albums / CDs, newspapers, documents, diaries and journals, interviews, meetings, love letters, notes, papers, art pieces, and so on, and so on; and if not everything, then at least get a lot of time and trouble. The person’s personality, emotion profiles, thoughts, beliefs, and appearance are also captured and integrated into an artificially intelligent, interactive, con-national agent / avatar. This avatar is placed in charge of (and perhaps “equated”
– Susanne Asche, Kulturelles Gedächtnis im 21. Jahrhundert: Tagungsband Internationalen Symposiums, Digital Immortality & Runaway Technology [18]

Making the avatar alive

Defining the avatar to be alive allows it to communicate with the future in the sense that it continues to learn, evolve and interact with people, if they still exist. Technically, the operation exists to implement an artificial intelligence system to the avatar. This artificial intelligence system is then assumed to be the most important of all.

Rothblatt proposes the term “mindware” for software that is being developed with the goal of generating conscious AIs. Such software would read a person’s “mindfile” to generate a “mindclone.” Rothblatt also offers a certain level of governmental approval for mindware, like an FDA certification, to ensure that the resulting mindclones are well made. [2] [14]

Calibration process

During the calibration process, the biological people are living at the same time as their artifact in silicon. The artifact in silicon is calibrated to be as close as possible to the person in question. During this process ongoing updates, synchronization, and interaction between the two minds would maintain the twin minds as one. [2] [14]

In fiction

Further information: Mind uploading in fiction
  • In the TV series Caprica has a digital copy of a person is created and outlives its real counterpart after the person in a terrorist attack. [19] [20]
  • In Greg Egan ‘s Permutation city people can accomplish achieve digital immortality by almost mind uploading a digital copy of Themselves into a simulated reality . [16] [21]
  • Memories with Maya is a novel on the concept of digital immortality.
  • The Silicon Man describes Cryonics as a precursor to digital immortality.
  • In the 1998 novel Vast by Linda Nagata “ghosts” are recorded memories and personalities that can be transferred to another body or to electronic storage, granting a limited form of immortality. [22]
  • In the TV series Captain Power and the Soldiers of the Future , Overmind and Lord Dread planned to digitize all human beings to be able to create a new world.

See also

  • Blue brain
  • Ship of Theseus
  • Technological resurrection
  • Uploaded astronaut


  1. Jump up^ Parkin, Simon (23 January 2015). “Back-up brains: The era of digital immortality” . BBC . Retrieved 7 June 2015 .
  2. ^ Jump up to:e Rothblatt, Martine (2014). Virtually Human: The Promiseand the Perilof Digital Immortality . ISBN  978-1491532911 .
  3. Jump up^ Sofka, Carla (February 2012). Dying, Death, and Grief in an Online Universe: For Counselors and Educators . ISBN  978-0826107329 .
  4. Jump up^ DeGroot, Doug (November 5, 2003). “VideoDIMs as a framework for Digital Immortality Applications”. Intelligent Virtual Agents: 4th International Workshop, IVA 2003, Kloster Irsee, Germany, September 15-17, 2003, Proceedings (Reading Notes in … / Reading Notes in Artificial Intelligence). ISBN  978-3540200031 . Retrieved 7 June 2015 .
  5. Jump up^ Cohan, Peter (20 June 2013). “Google’s Engineering Director: 32 Years To Digital Immortality” . Retrieved 7 June 2015 .
  6. Jump up^ Lewis, Tanya (17 June 2013). “The Singularity Is Near: Mind Uploading by 2045?” . . Retrieved 7 June 2015 .
  7. Jump up^ Strickland, Jonathan. “How Digital Immortality Works” . . Retrieved 7 June 2015 .
  8. Jump up^ “Digital Immortality – Download the World by 2050 | Anti-Aging News” . 2005-06-04 . Retrieved 2012-03-20 .
  9. Jump up^ US Government funds Virtual Reality Research,, 14 June 2007
  10. Jump up^ “What is Digital Immortality?” . . Retrieved 2012-03-20 .
  11. Jump up^ Eördögh, Fruzsina (7 May 2013). “Russian Billionaire Dmitry Itskov Plans on Becoming Immortal by 2045” . Archived from the original on May 24, 2015 . Retrieved 7 June 2015 .
  12. Jump up^ Digital Immortality, by Gordon Bell and Jim Gray, Microsoft Research
  13. Jump up^ Bainbridge, William Sims (November 2013). Personality Capture and Emulation . ISBN  978-1-4471-5604-8 .
  14. ^ Jump up to:d Desat, Marla (23 September 2014). “Would You Clone Your Mind to Live Forever? Virtually Human” . The Escapist . Retrieved 7 June 2015 .
  15. Jump up^ “immortal soon (@soon_immortal) op Twitter” . . Retrieved 2012-03-20 .
  16. ^ Jump up to:b Computertechnik und Sterbekultur . ISBN  978-3-643-11071-8 . Retrieved 7 June 2015 .
  17. Jump up^ McQuade, Zan (16 May 2015). “What happens to us on the internet when we die?” . The Week . Retrieved 7 June 2015 .
  18. Jump up^ Asche, Susanne (23 April 2005). Kulturelles Gedächtnis im 21. Jahrhundert: Tagungsband Internationalen Symposiums . KIT Scientific Publishing . Retrieved 7 June 2015 .
  19. Jump up^ MacIver, Malcolm (October 5, 2010). “Caprica Puzzle: If You’re a Digital Lives Forever, Are You Immortal?” . . Retrieved 7 June 2015 .
  20. Jump up^ Geddes, Linda (7 June 2010). “Immortal avatars: Back up your brain, never die” . New Scientist . Retrieved 7 June 2015 .
  21. Jump up^ Pickover, Clifford A. A Beginner’s Guide to Immortality: Extraordinary People, Alien Brains, and Quantum Resurrection . ISBN  978-1560259848.
  22. Jump up^ “Vast Review” . SF Site . Retrieved 17 January 2016 .

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