On 30 October 2008, a preview of the book took place in FACT, Liverpool, bringing together many of the contributors. This was its programme.
10.00-10.10 Why Human Futures? Mike Stubbs
10.10-11.30 Envisioning the Future,
Visions of humanity’s future are present throughout the history of science and science fiction. Their journeys articulate humanity’s aspiration to transcend known boundaries. Our Visions session interrogates the capacity to assert visions about the future of humanity. Russell Blackford is a leading science fiction writer and philosopher from Melbourne Australia, author of many of the Terminator chronicles and pioneering voice within the transhuman community. Norman M. Klein is an internationally renowned cultural critic based in Los Angeles. Together they consider how we should approach visionaries and imaginations of the future for humanity.
Chair: Steve Fuller
10.10-10.30 An Ethics of the Unknown, Russell Blackford AUS
10.30-10.50 The Human/Machine/Divinity Thing Justina Robson UK
10.50-11.10 Notes Towards the History of the Present, Norman M Klein USA
11.10-11.30 Questions & Answers, Discussion
11.30-11.45 Tea and Coffee
11.45-13.15 Designs on the Future,
How does design affect our relationship with the world around us? What can design bring to debates about the ethics of emerging technologies? This session gathers designers from the Royal College of Art whose work provokes people morally about technology. Through their artefacts and ideas, the aesthetic of future technology is brought into existence, the parameters of moral debate are drawn and the conditions of our commercial transaction with new technologies are established. Our speakers consider such questions as, how can we understand what choices people will make about genetic selection? What will be our relationship to animals in an era when we require them for sustaining human life? What does the science of nanotechnology mean for our own use of lifestyle body modifications?
Chair: Andy Miah
11.45-12.15 Design for Debate, Fiona Raby UK
12.15-12.30 Enhanced Humans as Super-Organisms, Michael Burton UK
12.30-12.45 Natural Kingdoms and the Post-Biological World, Revital Cohen UK
12.45-13.15 Questions & Answers
14.15-15.15 Life after death in the 21st century,
etoy.CORPORATION (since 1994) is art and invests all resources in the production of more art. The Swiss based shareholder company represents the core and code of the corporate sculpture. etoy intends to reinvest all financial earnings in art – the final link in the value chain. In this session, key pioneers in the exploration of art and science discuss the latest work of etoy.CORPORATION, Mission Eternity. In a time when scientists are beginning to find ways of extending life beyond its known limits, the prospect of immortality comes under greater scrutiny. What does it mean to remember people, things, events? etoy invite our consideration of this question and, in so doing, resist the idea that questions of immortality reside solely in the sciences of cloning, life-extension and so on. Their immortality is personal, collaborative and intimate.
Chair: Ernest Edmonds UK
14.15-1435 Mission Eternity, etoy.CORPORATION SWITZ
14.35-15.15 Discussants: Paul Brown, Linda Candy, Mike Stubbs
15.15-16.15 Unsustainable Futures? FACT in 2009 ,
We exist in a world of tremendous technological development, but also of looming economic crisis. What is the future for humanity given these seemingly incompatible trends? Looking towards FACT’s programme in 2009, panel members from both sides of the Atlantic consider what are the compelling issues of our time, drawing together ideas presented throughout the day. Should we spend time investing into the exploration of outer space when basic energy requirements are becoming unsustainable on present-day technology? How can our investment into nanotechnology or the new science of synthetic biology translate into greater optimism for those who benefit least from high-technology?
Chair: Nicola Triscott
15.15-15.25 Overiew & Summary, Nicola Triscott UK
15.25-15.40 Steve Fuller
15.40-15.55 Heather Bradshaw
15.55-16.10 Ernest Edmonds
16.10-16.25 Laura Sillars
16.25-16.45 ISEA 2009 Presentation by Karen Fleming
17.05-18.00 Book Preview Reception with Speeches
Mike Stubbs – Human Futures: The Programme
Andy Miah – Human Futures: The Book