Project Gilgamesh, formally established on 3rd May 2014, is an initiative devoted to educating the public about radical life extension and cryonics as scientific possibilities and moral imperatives. Before the blog, Project Gilgamesh took the form of face-to-face presentations delivered among a cadre of friends and to anyone with interest in an introduction to life extension and/or cryonics. The scope and impact of Project Gilgamesh was therefore very limited. With the Project Gilgamesh blog, it is anticipated that the message of Project Gilgamesh will reach and resonate with an international audience.
The content of the first twenty-six or so posts of the Project Gilgamesh blog will be taken from an unpublished founding document of Project Gilgamesh titled Project Gilgamesh: A Manifesto. As such, these initial posts will serve not only as an introduction to life extension and cryonics, but as an expression of the particular views of Project Gilgamesh on these subjects and the research philosophy that should underlie their scientific development. Subsequent blog posts will place more emphasis on disseminating a critical outlook on the diversity of research initiatives and strategies (and their underlying theories) dedicated to the objective of indefinite longevity.
Project Gilgamesh is heavily influenced by the theoretical foundations of the SENS program advanced by British biomedical gerontologist Aubrey de Grey. The SENS program is arguably the most formidable assault on the aging problem in terms of its theoretical basis, clarity of vision and motivating philosophy. Particularly indispensable to the SENS approach is its perception of aging as the result of seven types of damage accumulation – a perspective fully endorsed by Project Gilgamesh. Project Gilgamesh also shares the SENS belief that the requisite theoretical knowledge for the realization of radical life extension has already been worked out. As Dr. de Grey has often expressed, aging elimination is not so much a theoretical problem as it is a technical one. This is not to underestimate the intractability of the aging problem but rather to highlight its difficulty as stemming much more from a lack of refinement in our engineering strategies than in a poverty of our theoretical understanding.
Beyond its reliance on the SENS program, Project Gilgamesh makes certain propositions which may constitute its uniqueness, namely: the importance of protein design and drug delivery systems as precursors for cancer nanomedicine and cancer nanomedicine itself as a prototype for molecular repair technology, the Policy of Minimum Interference, the potential indispensability of microscale connectomics to the problem of the aging brain, the Virtual Physiological Human (and related initiatives) as potentially expedient to the life extension agenda, and an explanation of the inefficacy of telomerase therapy. Project Gilgamesh is also informed by the theories of programmed death and evolutionary considerations of maximum organismal life span.