16.7.04

Announcing the birth of the UK Transhumanist Association
 
A group of people that have met through the ExtroBritannia events have come together to relaunch the British Transhumanist Association. Due to legal restrictions on the use of the word "British" in registering a not-for-profit company, the relaunched organisation will be known as the UK Transhumanist Association. UKTA was registered on the 26th of June 2004 and its members are presently busy organising resources to begin a programme of activities.
 
Our aim is to inject a healthy dose of transhumanist* memes into all
levels of British society through a mix of lobbying, outreach/education, and networking. 
*we have adopted the Transhumanist Declaration as our definition of "transhumanism"
 
Lobbying
Decisions in areas such as stem cells research, biotechnology and nanotechnology are too important to a be left to the (unaided) politicians. There is no shortage of pressure groups that have both a technophobic agenda and the ear of politicians sitting on crucial parliamentary committees. We aim to provide an alternative and positive approach with targeted position statements delivered where they are likely to have the most impact, i.e. the government and civil society institutions where those matters are discussed and decisions are taken.
 
Outreach / education
Increasingly, the prospect of a "posthuman future" is debated in the media. However, there is an abundance of misconceptions regarding the use of technology for the enhancement of the human condition, as seen in the confusion generated by the ongoing cloning debate. We aim to provide  expert-speakers to interested parties, professional organisations, etc, able to clarify the issues, highlight the potential benefits and dangers, and generally outline a roadmap to the future. Furthermore, we aim to organise events that provide the general public with an opportunity to find out more about cutting-edge technologies and their impact on individuals and society.
 
Networking
We aim to create networking opportunities for UK-based professionals in the relevant enabling technologies with the aim of fostering employment opportunities and cross-fertilisation of ideas.
 
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While not directly linked to any other transhumanist organisation, we have friendly and cooperative relations with the World Transhumanist Association and the Extropy Institute and we are working towards building further constructive relationships with other, similar, groups.
 
Join us!
 
If you have the enthusiasm for helping with lobbying or arranging educational or networking activities, or if you have a project in mind which you think would benefit from taking place under the banner of the UK Transhumanist Association, then please do one or more of the following:
 
Join the UKTA mailing list. This is an open list for the discussion and planning of campaign activities
 
Join UKTA's free e-membership scheme which allows you to keep in touch with our activities. You will receive a monthly newsletter and any special announcements.
 
Join UKTA. We rely on membership fees to cover our expenses, such as those associated with sending regular press releases, targeted mailshots (for example to MPs) and arranging meeting venues. If you would like to support this work, then please consider joining. Membership costs £30 per year and will enable you to vote for the Board of Directors or stand for election yourself. Donations are also welcomed.
  
 

7.7.04

The next ExtroBritannia event is scheduled for Saturday July 31st, 2004. Please note that this month we are going to an "external" event:

Intelligence Augmentation Day


Organised by BCC, the Neuroscience Alliance and the Entelechy Institute

Location: Wolverton, Bucks, UK (see below for details)

IMPORTANT:

Unlike our usual events, it is necessary to RSVP in order to get
access to the venue (it's a private functions room at a hotel; if your name is not on the venue door you can't get in). See below for RSVP details.

SCHEDULE:

12 noon - 5pm

Meet at: The Albert Function Suite, The New Victoria hotel, 46
Church Street, Wolverton, Bucks, Tel: (01908) 315447
AREA MAP

Free beer/wine/beverages

IA lecture by Alex Ramonsky: Alex will discuss the possibilities that medical technology and drugs now offer for augmenting our
intelligence, looking at what is currently possible and what is likely to become possible in the next five years. These possibilities raise ethical and technical questions. We'll focus on the importance of using the new techniques to benefit humanity and to save lives, and discuss how we can make sure they are available to all, not just the rich and powerful.

Demos of biofeedback & light/sound machines

Presentation by biogerontologist Aubrey de Grey: "Really curing aging: a foreseeable prospect and a reason for IA". Aubrey will give a broad outline of a practical approach to repairing all aspects of age-related cellular and molecular damage starting from existing
biotechnology, and will discuss several of the more neglected aspects of why this might be a worthwhile thing to do urgently and how society will adjust.

Transhumanist & Extropian news exchange & updates

Intro to the Entelechy Institute's new project -'Babylon 5.5'

BCC's International Backup Exchange (bring your backups...it's
nice to know if your house burns down you have a backup on the
other side of the world)

5pm-at least midnight:

Alex's book launching party (at Alex's home; 5 minutes away)

Meal provided

More free drinks

Demos of TMS/NMS tech

Light/sound sessions

Free copy of book for all those who helped (if not available on the day, this will be posted to you)

Music & videos

ACCOMODATION:

1. Alex's house: free, but there may be a crowd and it may be just carpet space.

2. Local hotels (make your own booking arrangements):

The Crauford Arms, 59 Stratford Road, Wolverton, Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire MK125LT - Tel: 01908 313864
MAP
or
The Swan Revived Hotel, Newport Pagnell, High Street, Newport Pagnell, Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire MK16 8AR
Tel: +44 (0)1908 610 565
MAP

So, RSVP to:

alex@ramonsky.com
Or by mail to:
The Entelechy Institute
Seventh Star Studios
27 Old Gloucester Street
London WC1N 3XX
Or
Tel: (UK) 07092 016095
Or: 07759 693908

Feel free to bring a partner or friend. Under-16s are admissible (but of course won't be served alcohol). Any other inquiries please use the above contacts.