Cyborg Enhancement for the Space Age

At the time, when Clynes and Kline proposed cyborg as a therm to describe cybernetically enhanced human organisms, no one had ever been sent into space. They draw a proposal of what the utilities of cyborg enhancement might be, when applied to humans in (future) space travels.

I let you with a bullet-point of the upgrades they suggest:

  • Drug regimes to keep you awake and effective for weeks or months at a time (they call these “short-duration” flights).
  • Automatically administered anti-radiation drugs.
  • Hybernation for long flights to reduce the weight of food required for the journey.
  • Solar or nuclear-powered air exchangers hooked directly to your veins.
  • Urine recycling and intravenous feeding to reduce bodily waste to near zero.
  • Modified enzymes. They don’t really know what enzymes are for, but they’re pretty sure that they could be modified in some useful way.
  • Draining or perhaps filling the inner ear to reduce disorientation and dizziness.
  • Rewiring the brain to change the regulation of your heartbeat.
  • Drugs to counter muscle atrophy from long periods of weightlessness.
  • Systems to simulate atmospheric distortions in light transmission, so that we will see things in the manner we’re accustomed to.
  • Reduction of operating body temperature so that your blood does not boil when you step out into space without a pressurized suit.
  • Self-adjusting, colour-changing cloth that darkens or lightens to help maintain a consistent body temperature.
  • Drugs and temperature controls to adjust the metabolism for differing amounts of gravity.
  • Something to retard or facilitate the effects of magnetic fields, depending on how that will affect us, which we don’t know because no one’s ever been to space.
  • Regimes of sensory stimulation and variance to prevent you from having a psychotic break due to the monotony of space.
  • Remotely controlled, automatically administered anti-psychotics in case you end up having a psychotic break due to the monotony of space.
  • The ability to put yourself into long term limbo in case you find yourself in a situation where you’ve had a terrible accident, you’re in extreme pain, and you need to wait — perhaps for years — for rescue to come.


>>Clynes & Kline proposal.PDF


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