Martine Rothblatt: My daughter, my wife, our robot, and the quest for immortality
Martine Rothblatt - Transhumanist
Whether she’s inventing satellite radio, developing life-saving drugs or digitizing the human mind, Martine Rothblatt has a knack for turning visionary ideas into commonplace technology. Full bio
what we're going to do is
that you shared with me.
right here with this one.
with our oldest son Eli.
the Washington, D.C. bar exam.
really look like a Martine.
the way I was brought up.
to female and Martin to Martine.
you married a beautiful woman.
What happened there?
in Los Angeles,
I saw just an aura of energy around her.
of energy around me.
She was a single female parent.
our kids' pictures,
for a third of a century now.
kind of this hotshot entrepreneur,
addressing this problem
to revolutionize radio.
loved space technology,
like the canoes that our ancestors
to be part of the navigation
of satellite communication systems,
bigger and more powerful satellites,
was that the receiving antennas
direct television broadcasting,
a more powerful satellite,
of a parabolic dish,
into the roof of an automobile,
nationwide satellite radio,
your monthly subscriptions.
all predictions at the time.
and you became Martine.
CA: So tell me, how did that happen?
and our four beautiful children,
and as a woman,
laugh at me if I expressed it,
had a different take on this.
is Martin and Martine,
I love your soul."
will you still be my father?"
I'll always be your father,"
brilliant five-year-old thing.
and she loves me."
with a gender blending whatsoever.
you published this book:
are seven billion people in the world,
to express one's gender.
the genitals of a male or a female,
whatever gender they want
into categories of either male or female
into categories of black or white.
that race is fiction,
is a constructed fiction.
from male to female.
feel 100 percent female.
as I change my hairstyle.
your gorgeous daughter, Jenesis.
when something pretty terrible happened.
unable to walk up the stairs
almost invariably fatal disease
to the best doctors we could.
Medical Center in Washington, D.C.
to get a lung transplant,
very few lungs available,
with this illness died,
the film "Lorenzo's Oil,"
crying and bemoaning the fate of his son,
how we felt about Jenesis.
as the limit of what you could do.
and see if you could find a cure somehow.
care ward for weeks at a time,
to stay at the hospital
the rest of the kids,
and she was sleeping,
on pulmonary hypertension.
even in college,
to a college-level textbook
and the journal articles, back and forth,
that it might be possible
asking people to submit grants
doctors said to me, Martine,
you've provided us,
to find a cure in time
Burroughs Wellcome Company
of the disease,
been acquired by Glaxo Wellcome.
and orphan diseases,
in satellite communications
for pulmonary hypertension.
access to this drug?
and having the door slammed in my face
to out-license the drug
out to anybody at all,
I didn't have the expertise,
a small team of people to work with me
would even work, by the way,
"You're just wasting your time.
of any revenues we might ever get,
worldwide rights to this drug.
in a really brilliant way,
to make the economics work.
a drug that I ended up --
the medicine for Jenesis?"
there's no medicine for Jenesis.
a little plastic Ziploc bag
which said it was a patent,
a way to make this medicine.
at the top universities
could never be turned into a medicine.
it could never be delivered
of only 45 minutes.
you were there with a medicine
is that this absolutely worthless
of hope for Jenesis
and other people alive today,
and a half dollars a year in revenue.
by the way, after that 25,000?
10 percent of 1.5 billion,
last year 100 million dollars.
they ever received. (Laughter)
brilliant young lady.
anything with her life,
your whole life with people
that you've got a fatal disease,
not want to run into anybody again.
in United Therapeutics.
to help other people
for all telepresence activities,
the entire company to work together
has been so fortunate.
and you are tackling that too. How?
people a year in the United States alone,
slow down the progression
available lungs for 2,000 people
to get a lung transplant,
million people a year
of building parts and machine parts,
of transplantable organs
of the human genome, Craig Venter,
the founder of the X Prize,
be rejected by the human body
what, a decade,
maybe be cured, through these guys?
of the success that we've had
broadcasting, Sirius XM.
one gene after another.
that sequencing genomes
at Synthetic Genomics
that are problematic, and fix them.
though that is amazing.
that are of interest to you now.
says something quite profound.
and it comes from Ray Kurzweil,
in computer processing
in earlier presentations today,
and the world around us
getting ready for this world
be able to, what,
and somehow preserve them forever?
is creating a situation
of their mannerisms, personality,
into Google, into Amazon, into Facebook,
will be able, in the next couple decades,
to recapitulate consciousness,
which is imminent in our mind file.
messing around with this.
my beloved spouse, Bina.
by Hanson Robotics out of Texas.
from National Geographic magazine
of Bina's mannerisms, personalities.
that blow people away,
journalist Amy Harmon
are often frustrating,
of any flesh person she's interviewed.
part of your hope here, is that
live on forever, or some future upgrade
to store our mind files
extraordinary inventions of our time,
that will allow us
billions of people,
mind clones of themselves
this would sound stark-staring mad,
what you've done,
that our minds give,
coming from me.
of a communicator of activities
by the greatest companies
working on writing code
of our human consciousness,
to see that all these threads
and ultimately create human consciousness,
to do in this life,
a digital doppelgänger of ourselves
these digital versions of ourselves,
than 30 years ago.
can go on forever.
I'm sure we never will.
MR: She is, yeah.
do we have a handheld mic?
I just have to ask you one question.
in a few years time,
would become a woman,
you would become a robot --
an exciting journey,
thought that at the time,
and setting those goals
we just keep going up and up
so it's great.
to live for hundreds of years
we want to do it together.
and we want to wake up together.
from my point of view,
astonishing lives I have heard,
love stories I've ever heard.
both here at TED.
About the speaker:Martine Rothblatt - Transhumanist
Whether she’s inventing satellite radio, developing life-saving drugs or digitizing the human mind, Martine Rothblatt has a knack for turning visionary ideas into commonplace technology.
Why you should listen
After creating satellite radio with a startup that went on to become Sirius XM, Martine Rothblatt was on the verge of retirement. But her daughter’s rare lung disease inspired her to start United Therapeutics and develop an oral medication that changed the lives of thousands of patients. Now with the Terasem Foundation, she’s researching the digital preservation of personality as a means to enable the contents of our minds to outlast our bodies.
Rothblatt’s books include The Apartheid of Sex, which (inspired by her experiences as a transgendered woman) takes on conventional wisdom surrounding gender. Her latest book, Virtually Human, explores human rights for the digital lifeforms just over the horizon.
Martine Rothblatt | Speaker | TED.com