Latest post of the previous page:
The way I see it, the key thing would be whether there's a continuing sense of self. And I'd have thought that if one really could copy (and I think you're right about that: it would be copying) someone's consciousness, whether they're about to die or not, and then install it (for want of a better word) in a brain of some kind housed in a body of some kind, in a way that made that body a "person", able to think, feel, perceive, judge, reason, remember, form new memories, etc., etc., and that "person" believed him- or herself to be a continuation of the previous self, despite the change in body (which is perfectly plausible: I believe myself to be a continuation of the self that existed in a body very different from the one I have now), then that would seem to be a kind of afterlife. What makes it particularly scary, though, is the thought that there might be several copies of the same consciousness, in different bodies, all going around thinking, "I'm Jo Jenkins." (Including, perhaps, the original, if he/she didn't actually die.) But of course they wouldn't be the same after that point of installation. From then on, they'd have different experiences. I think the clones issue is different, because all they'd have in common with the original is genetics. All their experiences would be different. I think the sense of self is key, and that depends on things like memories.But I see that the mind uploading article mentions philosophical controversy about the idea, and I know that one of these issues is whether this is truly "moving" the personality/mind or rather making a copy of it. Cloning, which I mentioned earlier, would probably run into the same questions.
I had assumed that there would be a body, human or synthetic human or robot or cyborg or whatever. I'm not sure that it matters which, as long as the host body experiences that continuing sense of self.animist wrote:And I can't really imagine how, even if this emulation could be done, what "life" would be like - no body means no sensations? I suppose there would be artificial organs to provide these, but then this would be taking the "original" personality ever further away from the original.
But hey, I was only toying with the idea, for the purposes of answering Altfish's question. This is all new to me. And it seems to be more the stuff of transhumanism than humanism.