Christian Long

Craig Venter On The Verge of Creating Synthetic Life

In TED Talks on May 25, 2010 at 9:48 pm

Reflection by ALEX S.

Original TED page w/ speaker bio, links, comments, etc:

Craig Venter On The Verge of Creating Synthetic Life

This is a very interesting study and seems to parallel with the idea of cloning as they both are creating life. And like many issues over cloning this research by Craig Venter can be used for morally good and bad purposes. Good uses for creating organisms would be like what Venter shows in his talk, such as creating more food and natural resources for the increasing number of human beings on Earth. This would on a simple level solve the questions of how such a large number of people will survive on a seemingly limited planet, because Earth’s resources could soon become unlimited. Also with the creation of these new organisms we could create more animals so as not to offset the food chain.

Then we face the idea of whether or not it is morally right to create synthetic humans. I believe though that there is really no use of creating more humans. Mainly because if we made more of us we would just need to produce more resources. But from a political standpoint it does sound appealing to have a much larger military that could be trained from their youth. Next though we must remember that more and more military functions are being done by machines and computers. Therefore giving no purpose to creating more humans for military duties.

Also Craig Venter brings up how he is also working on converting CO2 to fuels. This could be very useful for the near future as the world transitions to different ways of making machines run. Like mentioned before Earth’s resources are limited including oil and fuel, but if we can convert CO2 to fuels then once again we can make Earth’s fuel resource unlimited. This is possible because CO2 is massively abundant in our atmosphere and is produced by humans every second.

Overall this is very intriguing research and if it continues to grow can be used in a huge way to change our world by making many of Earth’s most needed resources unlimited in their availability.

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