If I/we could ask Dr. Dawkins...

Hi out there. Just joined and watched the video of Dr. Dawkins in Boulder, CO on May 22, 2017. I graduated from MCDB in 1974 from CU Boulder, and was a humanist/atheist back then. When asked I state my position but would like to do more to leave the planet a better place; hopefully CFI will point some ways (1 from the video is to write politicians). In the video Dr. Dawkins handled a variety of audience questions; many outside his field. Perhaps there should be (already is?) a forum to ask him questions. Mine would be: do you think it possible for mankind to attain a complete understanding of the human genetic code such that we know all the steps in development, aging, and disease and can intervene in those processes?

Welcome Dave. I think Richard does interact on media.


Not here though.

FWIW, I think our increasing understanding of our genetic code will be helpful in developing interventions for the maladies that still plague mankind. But I suspect when we have relatively mastered the genetic code, we will have found there are other major puzzle pieces involved, some that we were not even aware of previously.

Appreciate the thought Tim. Are not the “puzzle pieces” likely (my view is certainly) just biochemical interactions and as such can be studied, measured, and modelled? I would think Dr. Dawkins has an optimistic view of this biological problem. Would be interesting to hear his, and your, estimate on how long it will take to happen. Given the advances in my lifetime (i.e., DNA structure to gene editing [curing sickle cell anemia]) I would hope we have it all solved in ~100 yrs. That assumes of course the human race survives that long.

Yes I prefer an optimistic outlook, also. Unless such is beaten out of me by actualities of reality.

But realistically, I suspect we will continue on, as we have with occasional new discoveries and developing technologies that can improve our fate. If we develop AI, maybe that would speed up progress exponentially. That assumes, as you say, that human civilization survives long enough.