Two kinds of cryonics?

by lsparrish1 min read10th May 201216 comments

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Personal Blog

I've been considering lately whether it would perhaps be best to develop and promote terminology that splits cryonics into two distinct concepts for easier consumption:

1) old-style cryonics, cryopreserving people at the cost of nontrivial damage that can't yet be reversed, and

2) the tech goal of being able to demonstrably bring someone back from a (very low-damage) cryopreserved state.

"Real cryonics" vs "sci-fi cryonics", if you will.

As I reckon it, trying to achieve cryonics definition #2 in your lifetime is no more incredible on the surface than trying to defeat aging or engineer self-improving AI in a similar timeframe. Actually in some ways it seems easier. Yet it gets so much less press. Even cryonics advocates seem rarely prone to enthuse about it.

Is it possible that cryonics #1, as a feature of the collective mental map, is actually in the way of cryonics #2? Should I be worried, for example, that promoting cryonics #1 actually costs 100,000 lives per day over some stretch of future time because it is preventing people from noticing cryonics #2 and actually taking action on it?

Many people I talk to who are new to the topic seem to have some hazy preexisting idea of cryonics #2 that gets mangled up with cryonics #1. Perhaps they would grow into enthusiasts with attention spans for the subject matter if encouraged to pursue this simple-to-grasp concept in its own right, instead of trying to forcibly retrain into more advanced concepts.