It is with a strange fascination that I read the article, The Transhuman Olympics: Where Entertainment Meets Innovation online. The article proposes a new Olympic style event that would instead of shunning the use of advanced materials, performance-enhancing drugs and biotechnology would embrace this technology. The thought is that if the goal is the ultimate human performance and potential why not use the best strategies and tactics to achieve the goal. It seems like the entire thrust of the competition is winning at all costs. This reminded me of an earlier Olympics a number of years ago where the new improved person was supposed to set the new standard of performance. You may remember that the controversy when the new ideal did not win the race as presenters thought that, indeed Jesse Owens showed the world that he was faster than what the Nazis promoted as the “Aryan racial superiority”. Are we not finding ourselves in Berlin in 1936 all over again? What about computer or electronically enhanced athletes if chemically or medically altered athletes can compete why not those with robotics included. Would we be having this conversation if our technology had not become so pervasive or do we think that every aspect of our life must be touched by technology? Have we outlived our usefulness as mere humans? Do we need to be enhanced to be interesting in competition or in life?
The article on Transhuman Olympics can be found here