Whether she’s inventing satellite radio, developing life-saving drugs or digitizing the human mind, Martine Rothblatt has a knack for turning visionary ideas into commonplace technology.

Why you should listen

After creating satellite radio with a startup that went on to become Sirius XM, Martine Rothblatt was on the verge of retirement. But her daughter’s rare lung disease inspired her to start United Therapeutics and develop an oral medication that changed the lives of thousands of patients. Now with the Terasem Foundation, she’s researching the digital preservation of personality as a means to enable the contents of our minds to outlast our bodies.

Rothblatt’s books include The Apartheid of Sex, which (inspired by her experiences as a transgendered woman) takes on conventional wisdom surrounding gender. Her latest book, Virtually Human, explores human rights for the digital lifeforms just over the horizon.

What others say

“Martine sees herself less as transgender and more as what is known as transhumanist, a particular kind of futurist who believes that technology can liberate humans from the limits of their biology—including infertility, disease, and decay, but also, incredibly, death.” — New York Magazine, September 7, 2014

Martine Rothblatt’s TED talk

More news and ideas from Martine Rothblatt

Live from TED

Life stories: A recap of the moving talks in Session 5 of TED2015

March 18, 2015

Life stories. Session 5 of TED2015 was dedicated to the kind of personal tales that would make for a great biopic. From the story of two Texans that calls into question what it means to be “American” to a talk from a tech pioneer who founded a software company for women in the 1960s, enjoy our recaps of these […]

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