Keep Your Loved Ones Sort of Alive Forever

It looks like computer technology is finally catching up to the old-fashioned seance. Which is the bigger crock?

This just in–

Some academic computer guy in England says that, in 50 years or so, no one will ever again have to mourn the death of a loved one–because red-hot technology will create “synthetic digital life” which will have the effect of keeping your family members alive (sort of) forever ( ).

Not really alive. But as good as! You’ll be able to talk and interact with them just as if they were really still here.

This miracle will be achieved by mining the dear departed’s collected words and works as recorded over many years in the social media! Wowee. Would that also include a lifetime’s worth of text messages? As an added bonus, they’ll make your loved one’s avatar so it’ll be able to talk with you, with whatever regional accents and turns of phrase are appropriate.

Could anything be more superficial? “I am the sum total of all my Tweets?” Ugh.

So once again we have Science stepping into God’s shoes. God offers us eternal life, by Jesus Christ? Well, so what–we can do that, too! And our version of eternal life will be better than that stale old Bible stuff, because you won’t need to have any faith. Like, this will be even better than having a robot because you won’t need any storage space.

God save us from the banality of humanism.

5 comments on “Keep Your Loved Ones Sort of Alive Forever

  1. I can’t think of a polite word, and I’m not sure I could even think of an impolite word, to describe my disdain for this hogwash.

    It is possible to feed a whole bunch of information into a computer and come up with a model of a person’s behaviors and tastes. This is a daily experience if you use the Internet. I will see advertisements geared to crotchety 60-somethings that love cats and computer networks, while someone else will see different ads, even if they go to the same places. I would imagine that analytics of my Internet habits would probably give a pretty good idea of my political preferences and opinions on the pressing issues of our day, but even with all that information, I might surprise them from time to time. How do I know this?

    Because I surprise myself from time to time. I’ve always quipped that I was to the Right of Rush Limbaugh and to the Left of Ted Kennedy. No, I don’t identify with the liberal political opinions that the media so strongly promotes, but my point is that I believe we find the greatest liberty by adhering to the moral precepts of the Bible and minding our own business. If someone is living by those precepts, they will find the amazing freedom our God offers. He is not a God of restriction, He is a God of freedom and only emplaces restrictions from the things which endanger our happiness and well-being. Satan, and the humans he has duped are the ones that love to make rules.

    Now, back to the Franken-“synthetic digital life” notion. There are two things this could never accomplish. For one thing, a “synthetic digital life” would not be full of surprises. If it were truly based upon someone’s social media, it could do nothing more that replay previous behaviors. I have music CDs of artists that have passed away, but that doesn’t bring them back to life.

    The second thing that “synthetic digital life” can never do, is be alive. It can’t hug, can’t look you in the eye and communicate something far deeper than words could ever express and it can’t join you for a picnic.

    So, it comes down to a high-tech seance. This is about as empty as it gets.

  2. The last few funerals I have attended have a big screen that shows pictures and videos of their loved one while you are waiting for the service to begin. I heard one commercial for grave markers containing video that tells about the deceased, and maybe even having a final message from them when they knew they were going to die. You just push the button and it plays. Hey, maybe cemeteries will become popular places to hang out as you go around pushing buttons.

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