The Lawnmower Man and Posthuman Cyberspaces.
On Becoming Posthuman.
“The posthuman view configures human being so that it can be seamlessly articulated with intelligent machines.”
(Niran Abbas, Thinking Machines)
Unlike traditional humanist theory, posthuman discourses place an emphasis on informational patterns over their material counterparts, propagating the idea that the human body as it currently exists is no more than a temporary or disposable prosthesis. In her manifesto How We Became Posthuman, Katherine Hayles writes that this emphasis on information sees the embodiment of the human in a biological substrate as an accident of history, rather than an inevitability of life.
While learning to manipulate our biological 'prosthesis' is an undeniable fact of current human existence, learning to manipulate an informational based prosthesis would only be an extension of that original process; a logical evolutionary step.
Theorists Arthur and Marilouise Kroker have begun to argue that the biological prosthesis is already nearing an obsolete status; that human bodies are becoming expendable as cultures and economies of the 20th Century collapse, resulting in a new form of social Darwinism in which survival is assured only for those with the economic means to finance their own continued existence. (Hacking the Future)
Robotics Institute researcher Hans Moravec supports this idea with his theory of “transmigration”; a process by which all facets of the human brain can be surgically extracted and transferred to computer software, leaving only the empty shell of the biological behind. (Dualism Through Reductionism)
With the reliance on the biological successfully removed from the human equation by any method, the integration of humans and computers becomes a simple task. Hayles --addressing the prosthesis idea-- describes that what the human being would lose in this process would not be the material body itself but rather the abstract notion of...