Discussion:
Robert J. Bradbury 1956-2011
(too old to reply)
Louis Epstein
2011-03-03 22:16:46 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Robert J. Bradbury,born October 5th 1956,died suddenly the night of
February 26th-27th 2011 of a massive haemorrhagic stroke.

An early employee of Oracle and the founder of Aeiveos Corporation,
he was a believer in future survival through transition of human
consciousness into "Matrioshka Brains",essentially a self-aware
set of nested Dyson spheres.

I met him in 2004 at the International Conference on Anti-Aging
Medicine where we were part of a side session on supercentenarians,
and corresponded with him over the Gerontology Research Group email
list.

He was an incisive thinker on the problems of longterm longevity,
and though I disagreed with him on whether "downloads" counted as
survival,I'm saddened that he failed to survive to see the technologies
that would pass his standards if not mine.

-=-=-
The World Trade Center towers MUST rise again,
at least as tall as before...or terror has triumphed.
Louis Epstein
2011-03-08 17:29:25 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Louis Epstein <***@main.put.com> wrote:
: Robert J. Bradbury,born October 5th 1956,died suddenly the night of
: February 26th-27th 2011 of a massive haemorrhagic stroke.
:
: An early employee of Oracle and the founder of Aeiveos Corporation,
: he was a believer in future survival through transition of human
: consciousness into "Matrioshka Brains",essentially a self-aware
: set of nested Dyson spheres.
:
: I met him in 2004 at the International Conference on Anti-Aging
: Medicine where we were part of a side session on supercentenarians,
: and corresponded with him over the Gerontology Research Group email
: list.
:
: He was an incisive thinker on the problems of longterm longevity,
: and though I disagreed with him on whether "downloads" counted as
: survival,I'm saddened that he failed to survive to see the technologies
: that would pass his standards if not mine.

From elsewhere:

http://ieet.org/index.php/IEET/more/dvorsky20110306


_______________________________________________

"Remembering Robert Bradbury"


by
George Dvorsky
Sentient Developments

March 6, 2011; Robert Bradbury passed away suddenly and
unexpectedly last weekend of a massive hemorrhagic stroke.
His passing was the kind of thing that barely registered
anywhere except among his immediate group of family and
friends -- and among a group of dedicated and niche
scientists, futurists and technologists. For them,
Bradbury's premature passing represented a monumental blow
to inspired and imaginative scientific inquiry.

While Robert Bradbury, who died at the age of 54, may not
have had the most recognizable name in the various scientific
communities he was involved in, his impact to future studies,
and in particular its relation to the search for
extraterrestrial intelligence, cannot be overstated. Bradbury
was a giant in this area, a creative and unconventional
personality who paved the way for other like-minded thinkers
and enthusiasts.

To say that the scientific community lost its foremost
thinker on SETI studies (the search for extraterrestrial
intelligence) and the problem that is the Great Silence (also
known as the Fermi Paradox) is hardly an exaggeration.
Bradbury was a voracious collector of any and all articles,
papers, and studies conducted on the subject. From my
conversations with him, I can tell you that his ability to
recollect and reference these works was uncanny to the point
of absurdity. He was an authority in the truest sense.

Nobody more than Robert insisted on the simple fact that
the correct resolution of Fermi's Paradox -- the fact that
we do not observe any presence of Galactic extraterrestrial
intelligence -- will provide us with crucial insights into
humanity's future. It was this particular notion that has
personally driven me to pursue SETI studies as a means to
predict humanity's potential developmental trajectories.
Simply put, if you can predict, or even observe, how advanced
extraterrestrials operate, we stand a better chance of
understanding our own future.

Despite the eeriness that is the Great Silence, Bradbury
applied a natural optimism to his work. He sought to
construct and develop hypotheses to the Fermi problem that
did not jeopardize the potential for human possibilities.
This included a grandiose "cosmic vision" of humanity's
future, and in this sense he was an heir apparent to Olaf
Stapledon, H. G. Wells, and Freeman Dyson.

To this end, Bradbury put forth a number of intriguing
theories--theories that have since become foundational
concepts amongst serious futurists, transhumanists and those
concerned about the potential for a technological
singularity. In particular, Bradbury was intrigued by
megascale engineering concepts such as Dyson Spheres and
Jupiter Brains. He even came up with one of his own, the
so-called Matrioshka Brain--a megascale computer that could
exploit nearly the entire energy output of a star. Bradbury
could never be accused of thinking small. Such concepts would
go on to influence such thinkers as Anders Sandberg, Nick
Bostrom, Robin Hanson, and Ray Kurzweil.

One of his most important works came in 2006 in his
collaboration with Milan Irkovi , "Galactic gradients,
postbiological evolution and the apparent failure of SETI"
(New Astronomy 11, 628-639). In this paper, he argued that
the most likely trajectory of a postbiological (i.e.,
digital) community would involve the quest for computational
efficiency and optimization. Such a society, he argued, would
likely involve spatially-compact civilizations that would be
extremely hard to detect, especially if located in outer
regions of the Milky Way. This conclusion has served as an
elegant and rather optimistic answer that contrasts to the
more doom-and-gloom suggestions that are typically put out.

The paper also criticized the orthodox approach to SETI
projects, which Bradbury found irritatingly old-fashioned and
conservative in the extreme. Instead of listening for
intentional (or intercepted) radio messages, he thought it
would be far more promising to search for artifacts and
traces of astroengineering of advanced technological
civilizations, like Dyson shells or Matrioshka brains. Such
searches, he thought, would have to be conducted in the
infrared part of the electromagnetic spectrum. A natural
extension of this concept was the project of setting up new
directions and expanded range of techniques for SETI
observations, something which was consistently hinted at
during the half-centennial jubilee of the OZMA Project in
2010. This study was, sadly, the last one Bradbury worked on
and will be published posthumously. Clearly, his departure
will be a great loss for the astrobiological and SETI
communities.

At a personal level, Robert Bradbury was known as a
generous, driven and often outspoken individual. His
unorthodox beliefs, a hallmark of the transhumanist and
Extropian communities of which he was a big part, often
translated to personal opinions that made others
uncomfortable. Bradbury never shied away from saying things
that might offend others, but this largely came from his
powerful sense of outrage towards certain issues, including
the problem of death. A radical life-extension crusader,
Bradbury railed against the needless deaths of people the
world over and how society spent so relatively few resources
to address the issue.

Along these lines, Bradbury also made a considerable
impact on early efforts to re-conceptualize and pathologize
the aging process. Back in 1991, he was already framing the
problem of aging as something that could be solved. To that
end, he devised a theory of aging that involved insights into
genetic defects, poorly-implemented biological programming,
and insufficient repair mechanisms; the work has served as a
precursor to Aubrey de Grey's Strategies for Engineered
Negligible Senescence (SENS).

Not content to merely wax philosophical on heady issues,
Bradbury made a number of attempts at various tech ventures,
but often to poor results. He desperately wanted to succeed
at being a technology entrepreneur, and at the time of his
passing, may have felt deep frustration at not being more
successful in this regard. He also wanted to marry and have
children, but seemed to have doubts about having a successful
and lasting relationship.

It may take a few years before Bradbury's contributions
properly hit the radar. He leaves behind a rather remarkable
body of work that I predict will eventually get the respect
it deserves in the various scientific circles he was involved
in.

Thanks to Milan Irkovi and John Grigg for helping me write
this piece.

________________________________________________________________________________
George Dvorsky serves on the Board of Directors for the
Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies and also heads
our Rights of the Non-Human Person program. George produces
Sentient Developments blog and podcast.


_______________________________________


: -=-=-
: The World Trade Center towers MUST rise again,
: at least as tall as before...or terror has triumphed.
Lars Brubaker
2011-04-18 23:03:09 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Louis Epstein
: Robert J. Bradbury,born October 5th 1956,died suddenly the night of
: February 26th-27th 2011 of a massive haemorrhagic stroke.
: An early employee of Oracle and the founder of Aeiveos Corporation,
: he was a believer in future survival through transition of human
: consciousness into "Matrioshka Brains",essentially a self-aware
: set of nested Dyson spheres.
: I met him in 2004 at the International Conference on Anti-Aging
: Medicine where we were part of a side session on supercentenarians,
: and corresponded with him over the Gerontology Research Group email
: list.
: He was an incisive thinker on the problems of longterm longevity,
: and though I disagreed with him on whether "downloads" counted as
: survival,I'm saddened that he failed to survive to see the technologies
: that would pass his standards if not mine.
     http://ieet.org/index.php/IEET/more/dvorsky20110306
                _______________________________________________
                         "Remembering Robert Bradbury"
      by
      George Dvorsky
      Sentient Developments
      March 6, 2011; Robert Bradbury passed away suddenly and
      unexpectedly last weekend of a massive hemorrhagic stroke.
      His passing was the kind of thing that barely registered
      anywhere except among his immediate group of family and
      friends -- and among a group of dedicated and niche
      scientists, futurists and technologists. For them,
      Bradbury's premature passing represented a monumental blow
      to inspired and imaginative scientific inquiry.
          While Robert Bradbury, who died at the age of 54, may not
      have had the most recognizable name in the various scientific
      communities he was involved in, his impact to future studies,
      and in particular its relation to the search for
      extraterrestrial intelligence, cannot be overstated. Bradbury
      was a giant in this area, a creative and unconventional
      personality who paved the way for other like-minded thinkers
      and enthusiasts.
          To say that the scientific community lost its foremost
      thinker on SETI studies (the search for extraterrestrial
      intelligence) and the problem that is the Great Silence (also
      known as the Fermi Paradox) is hardly an exaggeration.
      Bradbury was a voracious collector of any and all articles,
      papers, and studies conducted on the subject. From my
      conversations with him, I can tell you that his ability to
      recollect and reference these works was uncanny to the point
      of absurdity. He was an authority in the truest sense.
          Nobody more than Robert insisted on the simple fact that
      the correct resolution of Fermi's Paradox -- the fact that
      we do not observe any presence of Galactic extraterrestrial
      intelligence -- will provide us with crucial insights into
      humanity's future. It was this particular notion that has
      personally driven me to pursue SETI studies as a means to
      predict humanity's potential developmental trajectories.
      Simply put, if you can predict, or even observe, how advanced
      extraterrestrials operate, we stand a better chance of
      understanding our own future.
          Despite the eeriness that is the Great Silence, Bradbury
      applied a natural optimism to his work. He sought to
      construct and develop hypotheses to the Fermi problem that
      did not jeopardize the potential for human possibilities.
      This included a grandiose "cosmic vision" of humanity's
      future, and in this sense he was an heir apparent to Olaf
      Stapledon, H. G. Wells, and Freeman Dyson.
          To this end, Bradbury put forth a number of intriguing
      theories--theories that have since become foundational
      concepts amongst serious futurists, transhumanists and those
      concerned about the potential for a technological
      singularity. In particular, Bradbury was intrigued by
      megascale engineering concepts such as Dyson Spheres and
      Jupiter Brains. He even came up with one of his own, the
      so-called Matrioshka Brain--a megascale computer that could
      exploit nearly the entire energy output of a star. Bradbury
      could never be accused of thinking small. Such concepts would
      go on to influence such thinkers as Anders Sandberg, Nick
      Bostrom, Robin Hanson, and Ray Kurzweil.
          One of his most important works came in 2006 in his
      collaboration with Milan Irkovi , "Galactic gradients,
      postbiological evolution and the apparent failure of SETI"
      (New Astronomy 11, 628-639). In this paper, he argued that
      the most likely trajectory of a postbiological (i.e.,
      digital) community would involve the quest for computational
      efficiency and optimization. Such a society, he argued, would
      likely involve spatially-compact civilizations that would be
      extremely hard to detect, especially if located in outer
      regions of the Milky Way. This conclusion has served as an
      elegant and rather optimistic answer that contrasts to the
      more doom-and-gloom suggestions that are typically put out.
          The paper also criticized the orthodox approach to SETI
      projects, which Bradbury found irritatingly old-fashioned and
      conservative in the extreme. Instead of listening for
      intentional (or intercepted) radio messages, he thought it
      would be far more promising to search for artifacts and
      traces of astroengineering of advanced technological
      civilizations, like Dyson shells or Matrioshka brains. Such
      searches, he thought, would have to be conducted in the
      infrared part of the electromagnetic spectrum. A natural
      extension of this concept was the project of setting up new
      directions and expanded range of techniques for SETI
      observations, something which was consistently hinted at
      during the half-centennial jubilee of the OZMA Project in
      2010. This study was, sadly, the last one Bradbury worked on
      and will be published posthumously. Clearly, his departure
      will be a great loss for the astrobiological and SETI
      communities.
          At a personal level, Robert Bradbury was known as a
      generous, driven and often outspoken individual. His
      unorthodox beliefs, a hallmark of the transhumanist and
      Extropian communities of which he was a big part, often
      translated to personal opinions that made others
      uncomfortable. Bradbury never shied away from saying things
      that might offend others, but this largely came from his
      powerful sense of outrage towards certain issues, including
      the problem of death. A radical life-extension crusader,
      Bradbury railed against the needless deaths of people the
      world over and how society spent so relatively few resources
      to address the issue.
          Along these lines, Bradbury also made a considerable
      impact on early efforts to re-conceptualize and pathologize
      the aging process. Back in 1991, he was already framing the
      problem of aging as something that could be solved. To that
      end, he devised a theory of aging that involved insights into
      genetic defects, poorly-implemented biological programming,
      and insufficient repair mechanisms; the work has served as a
      precursor to Aubrey de Grey's Strategies for Engineered
      Negligible Senescence (SENS).
          Not content to merely wax philosophical on heady issues,
      Bradbury made a number of attempts at various tech ventures,
      but often to poor results. He desperately wanted to succeed
      at being a technology entrepreneur, and at the time of his
      passing, may have felt deep frustration at not being more
      successful in this regard. He also wanted to marry and have
      children, but seemed to have doubts about having a successful
      and lasting relationship.
          It may take a few years before Bradbury's contributions
      properly hit the radar. He leaves behind a rather remarkable
      body of work that I predict will eventually get the respect
      it deserves in the various scientific circles he was involved
      in.
      Thanks to Milan Irkovi and John Grigg for helping me write
      this piece.
________________________________________________________________________________
      George Dvorsky serves on the Board of Directors for the
      Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies and also heads
      our Rights of the Non-Human Person program. George produces
      Sentient Developments blog and podcast.
                    _______________________________________
: -=-=-
: The World Trade Center towers MUST rise again,
: at least as tall as before...or terror has triumphed.
Thank you for this thoughtful memorial. I found Bradbury's writings
several years ago on the internet and am very sad to hear of his
passing. He was certainly inspiring to me. I found his theories on
the evolution of the universe and the great silence to be some of the
few rational descriptions I have heard. I wish he could have been
around to know the truth of what there is and what we will become.


Lars Brubaker.
j***@gmail.com
2013-11-14 01:09:18 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by Louis Epstein
Robert J. Bradbury,born October 5th 1956,died suddenly the night of
February 26th-27th 2011 of a massive haemorrhagic stroke.
An early employee of Oracle and the founder of Aeiveos Corporation,
he was a believer in future survival through transition of human
consciousness into "Matrioshka Brains",essentially a self-aware
set of nested Dyson spheres.
I met him in 2004 at the International Conference on Anti-Aging
Medicine where we were part of a side session on supercentenarians,
and corresponded with him over the Gerontology Research Group email
list.
He was an incisive thinker on the problems of longterm longevity,
and though I disagreed with him on whether "downloads" counted as
survival,I'm saddened that he failed to survive to see the technologies
that would pass his standards if not mine.
-=-=-
The World Trade Center towers MUST rise again,
at least as tall as before...or terror has triumphed.
Intelligent tributes.

In 1999 he HTML'd

Speculations Concerning the First Ultraintelligent Machine*
IRVING JOHN GOOD

I'll wager he'll resurrect under Quantum Archaeology science, and you can ask him yourself if an upload would have been the same!
g***@gmail.com
2017-04-12 10:14:23 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Considering that this "human being" and I use that term loosely believed in committing mass genocide against humans that "delay the progress of technology by even 6 months" using a mass ICBM attack on an entire country; I think humanity has progressed tremendously in ethics by his passing. I for one won't be lamenting his death. In fact, I will be doing the opposite of lamenting. Here is the entirety of this mans insane beliefs:

http://extropians.weidai.com/extropians.3Q01/6758.html
Noel
2017-04-12 10:16:45 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Considering that this "human being" and I use that term loosely believed in committing mass genocide against humans that "delay the progress of technology by even 6 months" using a mass ICBM attack on an entire country; I think humanity has progressed tremendously in ethics by his passing. I for one won't be lamenting his death. In fact, I will be doing the opposite of lamenting. Here is the entirety of this mans insane beliefs:

http://extropians.weidai.com/extropians.3Q01/6758.html
Louis Epstein
2017-04-12 21:20:34 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
Post by g***@gmail.com
Considering that this "human being" and I use that term loosely
believed in committing mass genocide against humans that "delay the
progress of technology by even 6 months" using a mass ICBM attack on an
entire country; I think humanity has progressed tremendously in ethics
by his passing. I for one won't be lamenting his death. In fact, I will
be doing the opposite of lamenting. Here is the entirety of this mans
http://extropians.weidai.com/extropians.3Q01/6758.html
Interesting discovery.

http://extropians.weidai.com/extropians.3Q01/6765.html

was a timely response.
(Though an immortalist I'm not a "transhumanist" or "extropian" by
my understanding).

-=-=-
The World Trade Center towers MUST rise again,
at least as tall as before...or terror has triumphed.

Loading...