Mind Over Matter: 2045 Initiative
June 17, 2013

Russian Millionaire Wants To Make Our Minds Immortal

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online

Russian multimillionaire Dmitry Itskov announced a new project aimed at trying to make our minds immortal.

Itskov invited scientists out to an event called Global Future 2045 at Lincoln Center in the New York City to discuss how to take a brain from a human body and implant it into a computer in order to help the mind live longer. The millionaire has ambitious goals to try and transplant these brains into a machine by 2045.

According to the 2045 Initiative's plans, by 2020 scientists will have developed robots that can be controlled remotely through using our minds. Five years later, Itskov expects scientists will have found a way to transplant the brain into a robotic body that acts as a life-support system. By 2035, the project seeks to have the ability to move the mind into a computer, which would eliminate the need for the robot altogether. Dmitry said that by 2045, minds will be able to be taken out of a dying body so they can be used to control hologram bodies instead of physical robotic bodies.

"My vision for humanity is not that I want everybody to be a kind of ascetic person. I also want to facilitate the creation of a new high-tech world," Itskov told The Verge in an interview. "If you remember some of the best stories from sci-fi literature, that´s what I´m expecting. I want to see these amazing technologies transform the infrastructure of civilization."

He said through this research, he hopes it allows scientists to better understand the human brain and also understand at least part of the nature of human consciousness.

"Overall, I think these are the most exciting, and most difficult, challenges for science right now. Especially consciousness. If you understand what consciousness is, you basically understand what the universe is," he told The Verge.

"We know that every person has a very unique perception of the world, because each brain creates this uniqueness. Basically, we have some data about the external world coming from our sensory organs, and the brain constructs a perception of the universe. Philosophically, everything is in your consciousness. Physically, every consciousness is kind of a unique one. If we can unravel that, then we can make the progress we need."

During the conference in New York, Japanese robotics researcher Hiroshi Ishiguro's presented a life-like robot representation of himself on stage during his talk entitled "The Future Life Supported by Robotic Avatars." He uses this life-size robot to meet with students at a research institute two hours away from his laboratory. The Associated Press (AP) reported that Ishiguro said he can control the life-like robot through the Internet, and is able to see his students through a webcam.