X-Message-Number: 27677
Subject: Re: Cryonics/Life Extension Survey "Beta test"
Date: Tue, 7 Mar 2006 03:18:56 US/Eastern

 In CryoMsg 27673 Ben Best wrote:

> Please take the Survey at:
> http://www.benbest.com/sandbox/Survey_7.php
> You can see the results at:
> http://www.benbest.com/sandbox/Display_Survey_7.php

  At this moment of my writing this 62 people have taken 
my Cryonics/Life Extension Survey. 41 have already
made cryonics arrangements with CI or Alcor and the 
rest either intend to or would do so if they could
afford to do so. That indicates that this survey is 
surveying cryonicists. 

  At the moment, the biggest mistake that I think I have
made is in question 14 "Do you believe that cryonics can 
currently be practiced without freezing damage?". I should 
have asked "Do you believe that cryonics can currently be 
practiced without freezing damage *to the brain*? Although
this test is a "beta test" for the survey I will give to
a wider audience (most of whom would NOT be cryonicists),
it is probably the best survey I will get of cryonicists
attitudes, which is interesting in itself. I really do
want to know how may cryonicists are conscious of vitrification
and the effect it is having on our brain perfusions. 

   Male respondents outnumber female nearly 10 to 1. The
usual estimate for the excess of males over females in
cryonics is typically 3 or 4 to 1. This may be confirmation
of the idea that even the membership ratios underestimate 
the true disproportion of male representation because of the
number of passive female family members who acquiesce in 
becoming members. 

   Reconciling the exact numbers given in answering questions
(17) and (21) is not easy, but not surprisingly well over
75% of the respondents are atheist or agnostic. 

  The questions related to "immortality" and "infinite lifespan"
seem to produce the most confusion and controversy, despite
every attempt I have made to be clear. This was the case when
I was testing the first version of this survey on the Cryonics
Society of Canada Yahoo group, and I thought that I had gotten
things into sharper focus in formulating questions (5) and (6).
I don't understand how someone can comment "It was definitely
not clear whether #5 and #6 refer to millions/billions of years
of truly infinite."  I mean what I say, "infinite means 
infinite". How can there be so much confusion about this? 

   I do not intend on including (5) and (6) in my more 
general audience survey, but I have become interested in the 
attitudes of cryonicists in immortality. I personally think it
is preposterous to think that science can produce infinite
lifespans and I answered "No" to question (6). Less than a 
quarter of the responding cryonicists share my opinion, 
with nearly half thinking it is definite or probable that
science can do so and nearly another quarter thinking it 
is at least possible. 

   I included question (5) specifically because of of Robert
Ettinger's claim that anyone sophisticated enough to be a
cryonicist would realize that "immortality" does not mean
infinite lifespan. I note that the Immortality Institute 
subtitles its website "For Infinite Lifespans":


   I find the results of this survey quite fascinating and 
am pleased that I have undertaken this project. I am 
particularly fascinated by the large spread of answers to
questions (16) and (17). I am at a loss to make an analysis
of this result at the moment, but maybe I will attempt to 
do so in a couple of days. 

            -- Ben Best 

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