an immaterial objection

Via L M Sacasas, an interview by Evan Selinger with David Chalmers, who appears to be analytical philosophy’s current useful idiot from the POV of the tech scene.

Does that seem harsh, whether on analytical philosophy in general or Chalmers in particular? Well, given said discipline prides itself on a rigour that the filthy continentals supposedly abjure, I had to pick my jaw up off the floor after this line from the final paragraph:

One big difference between VR and physical reality is that material goods in VR are abundant.

I don’t know where to even start with such a monumentally stupid and contradictory statement.

But while it’s tempting to laugh and roll our eyes at these people, they are not marginal cranks. This, as Sacasas points out, is what a lot of the most wealthy and powerful people in the world actually believe, as an article of faith; “transhumanism is the default eschatology of the modern technological project”, and that should worry anyone who doesn’t see Ready Player One as a utopian document.

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