Mon, Feb 12

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THH 309K

HARDWIRING HUMANITY

An Exploration of the Ethics of Gene Editing, Artificial Intelligence, and Virtual Reality

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HARDWIRING HUMANITY

Time & Location

Feb 12, 2018, 6:30 PM

THH 309K, 3501 Trousdale Pkwy, Los Angeles, CA 90089, USA

About The Event

Hardwiring Humanity: An Exploration of the Ethics of Gene Editing, Artificial Intelligence, and Virtual Reality

It goes without saying that technology has the power to improve human lives. This is especially evident in CRISPR, a breakthrough gene-editing technology that can potentially eliminate mutations that cause disease, create mosquitos that can’t carry malaria, or make humans a few IQ points smarter. But if humans can alter their biology this technology also brings with it the danger of inequalities and discriminatory preferences being ingrained into our DNA. CRISPR can be used to determine a baby’s hair and eye color, which could lead to parents clamoring to give their child coloring they feel would most benefit them in today’s society. Or, if CRISPR edits are only available to the wealthy, their prettier, smarter, disease-free lives will make the differences between classes not just sociological, but biological CRISPR isn’t the only technology that raises these ethical questions—technologies like VR or AI, which allow humans to “create” their reality, could also possibly lead to the social inequities of today being built into our future worlds.

Suggested Media:

Ezra Klein interview with Jennifer Doudna, one of the creators of CRISPR

The Ethical Dimensions of Virtual Reality, The Brookings Institution

CRISPR is Getting Better. Now It’s Time To Start Asking the Hard Ethical Questions, Wired

Top 9 ethical issues in artificial intelligence, World Economic Forum

Hardwiring Humanity: An Exploration of the Ethics of Gene Editing, Artificial Intelligence, and Virtual Reality is part of Levan's Salon Series. Salon is a discussion series facilitated by Levan Fellows dedicated to examining ambiguous ethical questions in society. Discussions will be framed around articles or topics that participants will be expected to engage with before meeting.