WeeklyTech #69

Transhumanism and the Temptation to Play God

Often when we hear about advanced technology like artificial intelligence, augmented reality, and genetic engineering, we think of some far-off future with flying cars and robot co-workers. Terms like “the singularity,” “superintelligence,” and “transhumanism” seem irrelevant to the mundane problems we deal with as Christians living in a fallen world. Aren’t there more pressing issues?

In his book Transhumanism and the Image of God: Today’s Technology and the Future of Christian Discipleship, Jacob Shatzer—theology and ethics professor at Union University in Jackson, Tennessee—provides a clear and pointed critique of the popular concept of transhumanism, showing that it’s yet another expression of humanity’s belief that we are gods in ourselves. We must think deeply about this issue now if we want to pursue true discipleship in our rapidly shifting culture.

Shatzer helps guide believers through the challenging concept of transhumanism in light of a Christian ethic grounded in the image of God. We need to see how technology is already changing us and to wisely respond—otherwise we’re in danger of passively imbibing the cultural narrative that we can fundamentally change our nature.

The Rundown

YouTube takes down livestreams with fake election results – CNet

The videos streamed the false results to thousands of viewers before they were deleted by the world’s largest video platform, which is owned by Google. Some of the videos ran advertisements, which means their creators were able to make money off of the content. 

Swipe right. People are using dating apps to reach voters in swing states – CNN

Kawahata calls the movement “#DateSaveAmerica,” and she’s noticed users started using other dating platforms, including Tinder and Grindr, to get people to the polls. While it’s hard to quantify the scope of the effort, Kawahata estimates that hundreds of other people have joined in, based on the number of Instagram direct messages and tags she’s receiving.

Voter suppression misinformation spikes on Election Day – Axios

Ample focus is placed on what social media giants are doing to stop the spread of misinformation, but a lot of what’s traveling widely so far this Election Day isn’t on public platforms, but in texts, robocalls and private chat servers.

Need better Zoom quality? Send the kids, and their iPads, to their room with new Wi-Fi tech – USA Today

The technology, called Qualcomm Immersive Home, is designed to conquer the battle of the bits by covering the house with little network zones, each with their own small wireless satellite.