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SciTech Daily Review

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A Fraught Future?

Are we the bastard generations: the year 2000 teens and the young adults of the new century? We who are too young to believe in the old myths of heaven, and yet too old to make the new future of immortality. Are we the lost ones who have no gods and to whom the new saviours of science will come too late to be ours?

How could it be that the people of science are speaking of a new immortal world evolving at the edge of our lifespan, beyond our reach! Are we soon to be displayed behind the glass, next to the hairy ape and the dinosaur?

Already, in what many are calling the next phase of evolution, man is in small ways beginning to mould with his technology. The human is becoming bionic, slowly and clumsily today with titanium hips and metal hearts, but it will begin to accelerate through the century until the body is invincible and the mind more vast and powerful than the World Wide Web.

By year 2099 the experts agree, only a few will still inhabit a biological body. Nano machines, intelligent networks and quantum computing will take us there, to the end of the human era.

We grew up with the Sony Walkman, playing Pacman, bouncing the ball and filling our homes with the gadgets of science. And later we embraced educated ideals: a sustainable environment, equal rights and freedom of choice, but ultimately we will be failed by our time. We will not make it to the new world.

As the fireworks boomed overhead at the turn of the new millennium so we stood in the dawn of a new century as young adults, never more educated, never more healthy, knowing that the secrets of immortal life will be revealed sometime just beyond our years, and we were lost for an answer.

Shaun Burnett, Brisbane, Australia