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Following the recent Global Future 2045 conference in New York, which explored the possibilities of human life extension, or – horribile dictu – immortality through avatars (a project that even received the Dalai Lama’s blessing), a consortium of researchers has announced two prizes intended to inspire further exploration in these areas.

The Harvard World Mind Network, Friends Beyond Borders, and the Futures Project will present the inaugural Joy Awards at the end of 2014, which will include two categories: One prize for research into computer-based simulation of brain functioning, and the other for work in the repair and preservation of actual biological human brains leading to increased life spans.

In addition, committees are being set up at Harvard, Oxford, the Freie Universitat of Berlin, Tsinghua University and elsewhere to explore the apparently inevitable coalescing of computers and brains later in this century, and the possible implications, both good and bad, of these developments.

At the moment we have no further information on schedules, rules or actual prizes of the Joy Awards.

Until we get more details on this, you can check out the current standing of another competition; earlier this month Israel Brain Technologies announced its finalists for the $1 million B.R.A.I.N. prize.


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