Scientsts Create Scotty, The World's First "Teleporter"

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Pyrian said:
ShenCS said:
I don't think we're ever going to use the teleporter, once we get there, for live subjects, due to the ol' Prestige problem: you'll never know if you'll be the one materialising on the other side. I think Enterprise did bring this up once and dismissed it as hokey, which I always thought was quite unfair.
Ark of the Covetor said:
And this is why Transporters as depicted in Star Trek are a nonsense; they don't transport you, they murder you and create an exact duplicate at the target location. To the world at large there may be no difference, but the you that steps in won't be the same you that steps out the other end.
I agree with "Hokey". Or dualism, although I suspect most people who believe in souls would very quickly rationalize that their soul simply found (or snapped into) the new version right quick. I'm sure plenty of folk will refuse to use the newfangled devices, but that's always true, and once lots of people are beaming around non-chalantly, even most of them will come around. Too dang convenient.

The new "you" can't tell it's not the old you, anymore than anybody else can, and the old you is in no position to argue the point. After all, this "you" is an abstraction. If the pattern perfectly fits the abstraction, there's really no reason to quibble about technicalities. Are "you" the particular atoms that make up your form? If so, you're not the same you that you used to be, anyway.

'Course, the technical difficulties are another matter entirely and I don't really see this being used on people any time in even the remotely foreseeable future.
You basically stole the words from my mouth (or rather, since this is textual, my fingers). However, no matter how much I disregard the idea of identity from a philosophical stand point, these types of things creep me out. Although, considering my interest in the philosophy behind it, I would probably still do it. The idea of essentially "killing" myself and becoming a duplicate of me, or rather, transforming the system of consciousness into another identical form, would be quite interesting.

EDIT: Not that I ever will, because transporting a tiny inanimate object is one thing, but I am confident (and slightly saddened) to say that transporting the structure of the brain, or an entire human, will never be achieved in my lifetime.
 

Brennan

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In regards to Star Trek transporter killing you: if you actually watch the shows/movies, they clearly don't. There's numerous examples of people carrying on an activity while being transported. Not merely starting on one end and picking up where they left off on the other: actually moving and/or talking continuously throughout the process of being dematerialized and rematerialized.

This means there is constant interaction between matter one end of the beam and matter on the other end exactly as if they were part of the same whole the the entire time. The atoms/molecules that haven't dematerialized yet are interacting with the atoms/molecules that have been materialized on the other end and vice versa, even though their local counterparts are either already gone or yet to exist. The transporter isn't just transmitting a snapshot of particle positions: there's constant real-time updating going both ways throughout the entire process.

So unless one assumes a metaphysical component, your continuity of consciousness gets poured from one body to the other rather than stopped in one and restarted in the other. Your body and mind are destroyed and copied, but your consciousness goes from existing in one place, to existing in two places (while still being singular), then back to existing in one place, all along a smooth gradient.

When you stop to think about it, this is pretty much how it would need to work for any such process that wasn't instantaneous (like, quantum-level instantaneous, not just measurably/observably instantaneous), even with a real world technology. Without a quantum instantaneous process, you're going to have all kinds of problems with matter at the sending end going out of sync with matter on the receiving end. The process would need a way of continuously and seamlessly updating both ends with data from the other throughout the entire transition. Even a tiny amount of deviation on either end could be catastrophic when transporting a living organism. Depending on the length of the process, you'd end up with a lobotomized vegetable who'd die of cancer the next day (or instantaneously due to circulatory "hiccup")or something like what happened to the test baboon in The Fly, or just an expanding mist of organic molecules.
 

DoctorM

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Congratulation to these guys for inventing the 3D fax machine.

Not a teleporter... at all, but now we can plug Hatsune Miku in and can print our own Idorus.
 

kael013

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And its this thread's debate that has made me become a future adopter of the Aperture Science Handheld Portal Device whenever we get around to making it instead of focusing on the device that [b/]might[/b] kill you by [i/]working as intended[/i]. Portals come with no user endangerment.

OT: Scotty is pretty cool. I can think of a few tabletop hobbyist applications.
 

Jodan

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DoctorM said:
Congratulation to these guys for inventing the 3D fax machine.

Not a teleporter... at all, but now we can plug Hatsune Miku in and can print our own Idorus.
Kinda thinking the same thing this is jsut two 3d printers hooked up to a network. Not that impressive even from an engineering point of view.
 

Aetrion

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In the TNG episode "Realm of Fear" they repeatedly show crew members of the enterprise being conscious while inside the "matter stream", so even StarTrek isn't perfectly consistent on whether or not people are actually being deconstructed.
 

Aeshi

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Jodan said:
DoctorM said:
Congratulation to these guys for inventing the 3D fax machine.

Not a teleporter... at all, but now we can plug Hatsune Miku in and can print our own Idorus.
Kinda thinking the same thing this is jsut two 3d printers hooked up to a network. Not that impressive even from an engineering point of view.
Thirded, I really doubt that's how the Star Trek transporters work unless they kept a giant vat of Human Slurry somewhere off-camera or something.

I thought the definition of a "teleporter" was that it instantly transferred matter from one place to another.
 

Jeroenr

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ShenCS said:
I don't think we're ever going to use the teleporter, once we get there, for live subjects, due to the ol' Prestige problem: you'll never know if you'll be the one materialising on the other side. I think Enterprise did bring this up once and dismissed it as hokey, which I always thought was quite unfair.
There are a lot of Star Trek episode were the transporter gave problems.
In the motion picture a Vulcan crew member materializes deformed and dies.
Commander Riker got Cloned because a secondary beam did materialize when it shouldn't.



But OT.
This looks more like a 3D printer FAX machine than an actual teleporter.
 

Fanghawk

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Smilomaniac said:
Besides that, the teleporter isn't the "holy grail" of Star Trek. That would very much be the replicator, closely followed by the warp drive.
Except we <a href=http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/134688-Science-Discovers-Method-Of-Turning-Light-Into-Matter>kinda sorta have that too, along with potential warp drive models.
 

Kathinka

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Ark of the Covetor said:
Pyrian said:
Ark of the Covetor said:
I think you're throwing a whole lot of significance into this "unbroken continuity" that it simply cannot hold. A break in the continuity is no big deal. The vast majority of your neurons are not firing at any given moment, and it is not all that significant that a handful still are in deep sleep. There's no magical continuity that is instrumental in making you, "you". It's an abstraction, not a real thing.
We're talking about an emergent process resulting from a physical substrate, it is in no way an abstraction, nor is it "magical". The permanent cessation of all neural activity is, given all the presently available evidence, the best definition of "death" we have.
Based on all the knowledge we currently have, continuity of neural activity is not just significant but in my view required in order to keep considering a conscious being to be the same entity.
Very much this. Essentially from the travelers perspective, stepping into the teleport chamber is the same as putting a shotgun in your mouth, in practical terms. What happens after that he will not witness, not even with an absolutely identical copy of him now running around somewhere.
 

vid87

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For more practical purposes, as long the item is common and replaceable, this essentially could be a different method of long-distance shipping: why wait for, say, a car part from Ebay to be delivered coast to coast over a week when it can appear in a few minutes? The tech would obviously have to be cheaper to be practical but it's a thought.
 

Daaaah Whoosh

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Pretty sure this means transporters will never be a real thing. After all, if you aren't sending the real thing, why delete the original in the first place? 3D printing is a far better idea than Star Trek's transporters, except for the fact that 3D printers still need the raw materials to create whatever it is they're supposed to be making. Now, if we can get a machine to transport material across long distances instantaneously, even if it doesn't show up in the right order we can still run it through a spectrometer and then build it up with one of these things.
 

OldNewNewOld

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A teleporter like that is basically a fax machine with a shredder.
The original is gone. Forever. You're dead. No more. While this has some practical use, it's not really some huge news. It's basically a 3D scanner/grinder and a 3D printer on the other side. I'm pretty sure that tons of people who thought more deeply about teleportation has the same idea as this one.
 

Maze1125

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Ark of the Covetor said:
Based on all the knowledge we currently have, continuity of neural activity is not just significant but in my view required in order to keep considering a conscious being to be the same entity.
There are people who have been brain-dead and then resuscitated.
Are they not the same person anymore?
 

samahain

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Sep 23, 2010
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3D pronters just create plastics.
So "cool"?

No, it's not.

Not a teleporter, not a fax, just uploading a blueprint for a model.
This is not news, this is filling. Just saying.
 

Lono Shrugged

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pearcinator said:
WOW! A teleporter that takes 90 minutes to travel to a room that takes 5 seconds to walk to! This shit right here is the future!

Honestly, I wouldn't care if I was disintegrated and rebuilt at the other end (if it works flawlessly) I would still use a teleporter! That would be the greatest thing ever in history!
Hey man, when they invented the first T.V. there were no channels broadcasting. This shit takes time, don't knock it.

The thing about the transporter is that moving people from one place to another is the least practical use for it. Cloning, food, huge medical uses, exploration, construction, preservation, terraforming, weapons and I could go on.
 

Alexander Kirby

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Ark of the Covetor said:
the you that steps in won't be the same you that steps out the other end.
I dunno though; providing that what we call our "consciousness" is merely a phenomenon of some very complex chemistry and physics, and not in fact down to something incorporeal like a soul, then as long the machine recreates you with all the neurons in exactly the same place and with the same electrical impulses and hormones going around them as when you started, all should in theory be golden. After all, our bodies are constantly taking in new atoms and disposing of old ones, even those of the brain. The only thing that keeps us as "us" by any definable quantity is the instructions that put them together, our DNA. Unless as I've mentioned there's something more to what makes us "us", which as religious people are always eager to point out, can't be ruled out yet.

I've been wondering for a while now what it is exactly that we define when we define a person as an individual. If we take you as you are now and you as you were when you were a young child, there isn't actually very much connecting the two together. All the atoms in your body are different, including you brain and DNA molecules, so we can't define you as the particles you're using. We can't define you by you appearance either (i.e. how "you" cause atoms to be arranged in space) because you will be drastically different; your face, your voice, possibly your hair colour and most considerably your size will all be (although you will have retained traits recognizable by other humans) objectively completely different. The problems really start when you consider how wildly different your personality will also be. There will be a disparity with your interests and those of your former self and you will likely react quite differently to the same situations. You might say that memories are what defines "you" most accurately and they are a very big part of what makes you, although we forget a lot of things and research shows that we can "make up" memories that never actually happened. My main problem with using memories to define a person is that they can only define you from moment to moment, as in even though you retain you old memories your gaining of new ones is what drives your ever changing personality. Now our DNA is the closest to a set of quantifiable parameters to define you, but even it changes, which is the driving force of bodily changes as we age and the reason we eventually die.

Imagine if you had to program a computer to be capable of recognising an individual even after a considerable time gap. Humans have a rather amazing ability to recognise the tiniest of clues and details of a person, but even we have trouble being able to identify someone we saw when they were much younger even with a perfect image of who they were back then. Even something like being able to recognise them by their nose is a superficial resemblance rather than an actually quantitative one, as it will be objectively very different when it comes to cold hard measurements and ratios, not to mention the matter it's made up of.

I don't know really, what do you think defines an individual exactly, or is it all our own construct just because the change is gradual enough that we don't notice it? When does a growing hill become a mountain?
 

Addendum_Forthcoming

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Ark of the Covetor said:
And this is why Transporters as depicted in Star Trek are a nonsense; they don't transport you, they murder you and create an exact duplicate at the target location. To the world at large there may be no difference, but the you that steps in won't be the same you that steps out the other end.

I prefer the Displacer from Iain M Banks' Culture novels - creates something like a wormhole between two locations and instantaneously swaps exactly equivalent amounts of matter and energy from one end to the other, intact.
Right, but given that your body does this naturally ... what's the problem? You are, for all intents and purposes, stepping through a 'transporter' by your definition every 6 months .... in some cases (like red blood cells) every 60 days. What the problem with a machine that does so more efficiently?