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View Poll Results: Would you want to live longer while remaining younger?
Yes 24 51.06%
No 20 42.55%
I don't know 3 6.38%
Voters: 47. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 08-17-2013, 02:21 PM
 
Location: 23.7 million to 162 million miles North of Venus
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There are a small handful of people that basically age at somewhere around the rate of 1 year for every 4 years of life, Nicky Freeman, Gabby Williams and a few others.
Unfortunately those people are born with that condition, which has created a lot of physical and mental problems for them because of the lack of "developmental inertia". But once a persons brain and body fully matures, somewhere between 25 and 30 years old, the person wouldn't (shouldn't) have any of the same problems that Freeman, Williams or the others with that condition have.

Girl who never ages could hold key to 'biological immortality,' researcher says - NY Daily News
Quote:
"If we could identify the gene and then at young adulthood we could silence the expression of developmental inertia, find an off-switch, when you do that, there is perfect homeostasis and you are biologically immortal," Walker said. By "biologically immortal" he means people would still die from disease and in accidents, but they wouldn't experience the normal effects of aging.
"You wouldn't have the later years," Walker said, "you'd remain physically and functionally able."
I disagree with the "biologically immortal" term used in the article since it wouldn't make people "immortal", it would simply mean that they would live longer and do so without suffering from the ravages of an aging mind and body.
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Old 08-17-2013, 02:55 PM
 
Location: Florida
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They look like they are mentally retarded, as well.
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Old 08-17-2013, 04:08 PM
 
Location: 23.7 million to 162 million miles North of Venus
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Originally Posted by OhZone View Post
They look like they are mentally retarded, as well.
Since they were born with this condition then their minds, along with their bodies, are not maturing like regular folk. Their minds and bodies are basically stuck in the infancy and in very early childhood. Also, I don't know about the others with this condition, but both Nicky and Gabby are blind.

As I commented in my first post, the human body and brain does not fully mature until somewhere between the ages of 25 to 30. If Nicky and Gabby had the gene, that stops the mind and body from physically aging, from birth but it was a dormant gene then they would probably look, learn and act like any normal person their age. If that gene suddenly switched on when they reached the age of 30 then, since their brains would be fully mature, they would probably continue to learn new things at the same rate as any normal adult would, though their bodies would continue to look (and physically act) 30 for a very, very, very long time.
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Old 08-17-2013, 04:36 PM
 
Location: Kansas
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So, what's 100+ feel like? I turned 59 a couple of weeks ago and I would not have popped the pill. I'm not one much for popping pills anyway and that's probably why at 59, I'm happy and healthy enough to be ready to do out my years in the normal way. I feel terribly sorry for the parents of those children. We have a son with DS and I have seen so many conditions in the places and programs for people with issues and it is so heartbreaking and much worse than any condition brought about simply by aging. Aging isn't that bad. Most of the time, I don't think about what my age is and I can still do a lot of things that I always did and in a more efficient and timely fashion. The wisdom that can come with aging is awesome. As you look back over the years of your life, it's so cool. I have lived! I was born to be alive! So, I don't look 30? So? Never was hung up on looks either. We all have good and bad days at any age. I just hope to remain in good health and work at that. Live! Life is good when you are older. I read something that said that older Americans are much more content in their later years. I have had the blessing to know several awesome people in their 80's and they felt blessed each day they awoke and you can't say that about a lot of others that are much younger, feeling younger and looking younger.
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Old 08-18-2013, 01:58 AM
 
Location: 23.7 million to 162 million miles North of Venus
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnywhereElse View Post
So, what's 100+ feel like? I turned 59 a couple of weeks ago and I would not have popped the pill. I'm not one much for popping pills anyway and that's probably why at 59, I'm happy and healthy enough to be ready to do out my years in the normal way.
I don't have a clue what 100+ feels like, other than listening to what older people have to say. I'm younger than you, so, you can tell me what it's like when you get there
Good natured kidding aside, as far as 'pill popping' if they ever figure out how to manipulate the gene(s) for people to live a much longer life while their bodies basically remain at whatever age they are when they they have the procedure done, whether they are 30, 40, 50, 60+ years old when they have the procedure, I don't know how that particular treatment would be delivered but I doubt it would be something as simple as a pill.
Over the past 2000 years the life span has held pretty steady but people these days (over the last 4 generations) are living longer then they had before, with life spans, in some cases, almost doubling the life span of our ancestors. Part of it is because of good genes and a lot of it is from eating a better diet, having better hygiene (flossing those pearly whites to avoid heart problems, etc.), and, medical care is much better at prolonging peoples lives these days, through medications, surgeries, etc. What it boils down to is that people are already making choices in doing things to extend their lives through diet, medical care, etc. I doubt people with high cholesterol are not taking cholesterol meds because by taking them they would be extending their normal life span.

For those that voted no in the poll, do you consider it unnatural for a person to live to be 100+ years old, or, is it the thought of living in a body that is younger than it should be for someone who is 100+ years old, or, is it the thought of the medical procedure that would be extending the life (keeping in mind that medical procedures/medicine is part of why people are living longer today)?


Quote:
I feel terribly sorry for the parents of those children. We have a son with DS and I have seen so many conditions in the places and programs for people with issues and it is so heartbreaking and much worse than any condition brought about simply by aging.
I'm sorry to hear that your son had DS. It is heartbreaking to see anyone, especially children, having to deal with major physical or mental issues. Years ago the young daughter of a good friend of mine had cancer. I would go up to visit her as often as I could and her bed was at the very far end of the childrens cancer ward. I think walking past all of those wonderful children to get to her bedside was the hardest thing that I've ever done in my lifetime. I couldn't bring myself to walk past them and keep my eyes to the floor or to the far wall like they weren't there, I always tried to give each of them a smile and an encouraging word or two as I was passing by them. It was very hard to keep a smile on my face when I was crying buckets on the inside. I don't know how the nurses handle it day after day, those caring nurses have my utmost respect.

Quote:
Aging isn't that bad. Most of the time, I don't think about what my age is and I can still do a lot of things that I always did and in a more efficient and timely fashion. The wisdom that can come with aging is awesome. As you look back over the years of your life, it's so cool. I have lived! I was born to be alive! So, I don't look 30? So? Never was hung up on looks either. We all have good and bad days at any age. I just hope to remain in good health and work at that. Live!
IF that procedure were available today and you took advantage of it, you would not look 30, well, not unless you look 30 right now . I mentioned the age 30 because that is typically the age where the average persons brain and body reaches full maturity. IF that procedure ever becomes reality then it should never be performed on someone younger than 30.
And IF that procedure were available the people that do take advantage of it would still gain wisdom and could still look back over the years of their life.

Quote:
Life is good when you are older. I read something that said that older Americans are much more content in their later years. I have had the blessing to know several awesome people in their 80's and they felt blessed each day they awoke and you can't say that about a lot of others that are much younger, feeling younger and looking younger.
I don't know if older people are actually content in their later years, or if they have just given in to the thought of their days are growing shorter. Depression in the elderly is quite common.

To wrap it up, living longer without physically aging is just one of the things that the researchers are looking at. They are also using the data, from those with the slow aging condition (there is no name for that condition yet), to research for other things such as a cure for Alzheimer's (the sixth leading cause of death in the US).
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Old 08-18-2013, 08:13 AM
 
Location: Northeastern US
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I have said before that I am not certain being "biologically immortal" would be a good thing. I would like the opportunity to find out, of course. Who wouldn't, if it could be done with good quality of life? But I find it fascinating that "developmental inertia" is so vital to mental development. Who would assert that they have not continued to grow past the age of 25 or so where it seems biological maturation seems complete? If my "developmental intertia" had been arrested by that time, would I have ceased my personal development as well? Or would it have been somehow deranged or slowed down? That's an interesting question. Frankly, I don't think most people are really comfortable in their own skin until they are around 50. I would like to think that is a simple matter of experience and accumulated wisdom, but what if it is more biologically driven than we know?

One thing I will restate, from the perspective of my 56th year ... it is possible that life is like a movie. No matter how well scripted, directed, photographed, edited, and scored, no one cares for a movie that is 12 hours long. At some point it's time to pee and go to bed. If I were offered "biological immortality" I would want the option to end my life on my own terms if I became weary of it. Frankly, I'm a bit weary already. If I had more time to explore and experience things, I think my innate curiosity would carry the day. But I would hate to be condemned to live 500 years and feel that I was 400 years past my "best used by" date ;-)
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Old 08-18-2013, 07:41 PM
 
Location: 23.7 million to 162 million miles North of Venus
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mordant View Post
I have said before that I am not certain being "biologically immortal" would be a good thing. I would like the opportunity to find out, of course. Who wouldn't, if it could be done with good quality of life? But I find it fascinating that "developmental inertia" is so vital to mental development. Who would assert that they have not continued to grow past the age of 25 or so where it seems biological maturation seems complete? If my "developmental intertia" had been arrested by that time, would I have ceased my personal development as well? Or would it have been somehow deranged or slowed down? That's an interesting question. Frankly, I don't think most people are really comfortable in their own skin until they are around 50. I would like to think that is a simple matter of experience and accumulated wisdom, but what if it is more biologically driven than we know?
I would like the opportunity too. As far as quality of life, per the article, people could still have illnesses and accidents. It would definitely suck to get into an accident and end up as a paraplegic for the next 400 years or so. But I would think that if a person is in general good health when they take the 'live long treatment' then, barring devastating injury or illness, they would probably continue to enjoy good health (just my opinion on that)

As for the brain activity after the 'live long treatment', and the person does it after the brain had fully matured, then (again, just opinion) I doubt the person would fall behind others in continued learning, etc. The time when the brain learns the most is during the pre-teen years. The brain works on creating both short term and long term memory compartments. During the years up until a person reaches 30 the brain works at filling and utilizing those compartments. Typically, though not always, after 30 the brain basically works by rote. People can still learn new things but probably not at the same rate as in their formative years. Generally around age 40 the brain starts to slow down. So, who knows, maybe the people who take the 'live long treatment' might end up being ahead of those, who don't take the treatment, who are in their same age group.

Quote:
One thing I will restate, from the perspective of my 56th year ... it is possible that life is like a movie. No matter how well scripted, directed, photographed, edited, and scored, no one cares for a movie that is 12 hours long. At some point it's time to pee and go to bed. If I were offered "biological immortality" I would want the option to end my life on my own terms if I became weary of it. Frankly, I'm a bit weary already. If I had more time to explore and experience things, I think my innate curiosity would carry the day. But I would hate to be condemned to live 500 years and feel that I was 400 years past my "best used by" date ;-)
Reading this part of what you posted, I got a flash of the Sol Roth (Edward G. Robinson) death scene in Soylent Green, where he laid back, listened to the music of his choice and watched the scenes of his choice on the giant surrounding video screen while waiting for them hit the button to deliver the painless drug that would end his life.
But yeah, I agree that an extremely long life could become mundane at some point especially if there isn't anything new to get excited about. And maybe the 'something new' wouldn't be enough to hold interest for long for some/many/most people.

As far as something new, if people opt to have longer lives then there would be no choice but to vamp up the space program, either as a joint world effort or an individual country effort. There is too many people on this rock right now, imagine how it would be if the birth rate remained fairly similar to what it is now along with a bunch of people who will live for a very long time.

As for going to the closest (possible) habitable planet (Tau Ceti e) if we traveled 43 miles per second, which is the speed of the spacecraft Helios II, it would take 51,000 years to get there. I don't know if humans could withstand that speed though. So a slower speed, like the 8 miles per second speed that Voyager travels at, it would take about 200,000 years to get there. It would probably take a generational ship to get there, then once there the descendants would probably be so used to living on board a ship that they wouldn't be comfortable on the surface of any planet.

NASA is working on a warp drive (yeah, sci fi does sometimes come true).
NASA working on faster-than-light space travel, says warp drives are ‘plausible’ | ExtremeTech

But, there are some major hiccups with it that they have to work on before it would be a plausible form of travel. One of which is once the warp drive ship reaches its destination and turns off its warp drive, there is a very good chance that it will cause the planet, that it's aimed for, and maybe the surrounding star system to explode into tiny little bits.
The downside of warp drives: Annihilating whole star systems when you arrive | ExtremeTech

Another possibility is terraforming Mars, which might be one of the better options.
HowStuffWorks "How Terraforming Mars Will Work"

And there's the option of an earth orbit habitable space station, with its own gravity and also plant life (and maybe animal life)

As for the things listed above and the jaded 'live longer' person, at the beginning stages of any of those ideas they would probably only want the best people with degrees in engineering, biology, etc. which would omit most people, who would only be able to sit back, watch and hope that eventually they will have their chance.

With all that, if I had a choice of taking the treatment I would still do it ... in a heartbeat.

Last edited by berdee; 08-18-2013 at 08:16 PM..
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Old 08-18-2013, 08:44 PM
 
Location: Logan Township, Minnesota
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Just speaking for myself, At thirty I probably would have "Popped the Pill" but by the age of 60 I would have regretted doing it.

Old age is not a blessing and I have learned the wisdom of an old Chinese curse which is "May you live to be 1000 years old" which is considered a curse and not a blessing as many Westerners think.

If you have not made an impact by the time you reach 60, you probably never will. If you have made an impact all else becomes anti-climatic.

Live is nothing more than a trial and a learning time. There is no need in wishing to be in this physical realm any longer that it takes to assure your eternal destination.

Enjoy live to the fullest, but do not attach so much importance to it that you fear leaving it.
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Old 08-18-2013, 11:25 PM
 
Location: Sacramento, CA
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Too much pain and evil in this world for me, so I voted no. I've been through enough pain for one lifetime, and since I am a born again Christian, I'm just trying to be the best person I can until my time comes. Amen.
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Old 08-19-2013, 12:32 AM
 
Location: Northeastern US
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Originally Posted by Woodrow LI View Post
Just speaking for myself, At thirty I probably would have "Popped the Pill" but by the age of 60 I would have regretted doing it.

Old age is not a blessing and I have learned the wisdom of an old Chinese curse which is "May you live to be 1000 years old" which is considered a curse and not a blessing as many Westerners think.

If you have not made an impact by the time you reach 60, you probably never will. If you have made an impact all else becomes anti-climatic.
I suspect that one can have many and/or ongoing "impacts" and there is the matter of curiosity. I don't see an end to the things to learn and experience if you're a curious person.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Woodrow LI View Post
Enjoy live to the fullest, but do not attach so much importance to it that you fear leaving it.
On that I can most definitely agree.
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