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Discussing "The Science of Radical Life Extension" with TED Books author David Ewing Duncan

Continuing with our series of TED Book Chats.... How long do you want to live, and why?

For the next two weeks, we'll be discussing David Ewing Duncan's new eBook, "When I'm 164", on the science of radical life extension. Duncan surveys the increasingly legitimate science — from genetics and regeneration to machine solutions — and considers the pluses and minuses of living to age 164, or beyond. We'll look at everything from the impact of extended life on cities, services, and the cost of living as well as what happens to love, curiosity, and general health.

The book is available for Kindle, Nook, and iOS devices (which have a great new custom TED Books app):

Kindle copy: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B008XB16ME/
iOS app: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/ted-books/id511071050?mt=8

The New York Times also published an excerpt this week, you can read it here: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/08/26/sunday-review/how-long-do-you-want-to-live.html

Finally, author David Ewing Duncan will be joining us for a live Q&A at 4pm EDT on September 11th!

Looking forward to our discussion!


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  • Sep 11 2012: Mr. Duncan - I've come into this conversation very late, so forgive me if this has already been covered or rendered irrelevant by something else you've said. My question is this: Considering that dealing with loss of loved ones is often a lifelong process even under current life expectancies, what do you think the psychological effects of loss will be for those who live long enough to live indefinitely? For instance, imagine that a loved one dies only a month, a day, an hour before some radical life extension breakthrough is announced. For those who have lost loved ones and suddenly find themselves with the very real possibility of an indefinite lifespan, won't some sort of "survivor's guilt" come into play, but on a mass societal level? If so, how will this be addressed? If not, why not?
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      Sep 11 2012: Interesting - I'm sure this will happen. It already does in families where one member dies of, say, cancer at a radically early age, and siblings and parents survive. I suspect there will be full employment for psychiatrists specializing in the impacts of radical life extension for all sorts of issues.
      • Sep 11 2012: My thoughts exactly. I suppose if physicists ever figure out some sort of viable time travel, the idea of resurrecting the dead will become a hot topic for this very reason -- but that's an entirely different and far more speculative topic with its own issues. Thanks for taking the time out to answer my question. :)

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