Among the topics explored in the book:
– Strategies for envisioning the middle-term future. By taking into account the distinctly layered time-frames of historical change, we can increase our effectiveness in describing “possible futures.”
– The science and technology of human bioenhancement: eight key areas of innovation. Pharmaceuticals, bioelectronics, genetics, nanotechnology, robotics, artificial intelligence (AI), synthetic biology, and virtual reality.
– The fierce debates between advocates and opponents of transhumanism and “the posthuman future:” how to find a critical, constructive way forward.
– Human flourishing: a moral framework for evaluating specific bioenhancements on a case-by-case basis.
– The revolutionary potential of epigenetic enhancement modifications.
– If bioenhancements are adopted by millions of consumers, what would be the likely economic, social, and cultural consequences?
– Bioenhancement of animals: should we create new hybrids and augmented creatures?
– Direct modifications of brain and mind: how the new field of neuroethics can help us clarify and evaluate the implications.
– The tantalizing (and problematic) possibility of “moral bioenhancement.”
– The commodification of humans, and the specific ways in which bioenhancement technologies could erode human dignity.
– Rejuvenation technologies and extremely long healthspans – what would be their ecological, economic, and psychological consequences?
– The Singularity, radical bioenhancement, and the possibility of creating human-level forms of artificial intelligence.
– Values worth preserving as the enhancement enterprise goes forward over the coming decades.
– The space for human agency in steering the development of scientific and technological innovation.