1% chance of survival

Welcome to the Oregon Cryonics forum
jordansparks
Site Admin
Posts: 104
Joined: Thu Aug 27, 2015 3:59 pm

1% chance of survival

Postby jordansparks » Fri Mar 29, 2019 10:15 am

I see 1% getting thrown around a lot in various contexts. The usual claim is that a 1% chance of revival if cryopreserved is better than the 0% chance if cremated. This is sometimes bolstered by a claim that the payoff is billions of years of additional life, so the 1% translates to millions of years. But it's not quite that simple.

First of all, we need to separate the preservation phase (phase I) from the revival phase (phase II). In phase I, the only risk issue is preservation quality. In other words, what percentage of the memories were preserved well enough that they could, in theory, be recoverable. This is never binary. It has nothing to do with survival of the person, but only with how much of the person has survived through the first phase. So 1% survival really means that 1% of the memories survived. This does not, in my mind, meet the definition of survival. If my acceptable threshold for amnesia damage is 50%, then it's really not worth pursuing cryonics at all unless I think I can hit 50% memory survival during phase I.

In contrast, phase II is completely binary. Either those memories get recovered or they do not. Nobody's going to do a mediocre job of memory recovery. Either they will wait until they can do it well, or else something will go wrong and the brain will get destroyed. For phase II, 1% truly does translate to an all-or-nothing risk assessment. There is virtually nothing we can do to change the risk of phase II. We are depending on others, and we do not have enough information to be able to make any sort of accurate predictions about chances of revival.

Since phase I is the only phase under our control, and since we can't get to phase II without surviving through phase I, all of our efforts should be focused exclusively on phase I and on improving quality. Above all, we must remember that small percentages in phase I are next to useless rituals. Phase I always requires large percentages to be worthwhile.

User avatar
DataPacRat
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Mar 18, 2018 5:53 am
Location: Niagara, Canada
Contact:

Re: 1%

Postby DataPacRat » Fri Mar 29, 2019 10:32 am

Anyone interested in this topic would probably gain some value from visiting https://www.cryonicscalculator.com/ . Its method has some flaws, but is at least useful in making sure your own mental model isn't leaving out some important detail.

With my own goal for cryonics being the revival of a person who shares enough of my values to continue pursuing them (completely ignoring whether that person counts as 'me' or not, or even whether they're a 'person' or not), my own estimates of current-day cryonics succeeding at that goal is on the order of 4%; when I recalculated that based on the assumption that I could sign up for either Oregon Cryonics, or arrange for a suspension protocol based on OC's, I ended up with an estimate of 6%. With CI costing about $300 per year (for insurance and membership), the choice for signing up for at least some attempt at cryo rather than no cryo at all seems obvious. That said, 4% isn't great, and I try to keep an eye out for any way to improve that number that's within my mental and financial resources. For example, there's some fresh discussion going on over at the New Cryonet mailing list for a wearable heart monitor that can call someone if something goes wrong, hopefully shaving hours between deanimation and cryosuspension; the last time that discussion happened, nobody seemed to feel the tech was quite ready to use, but maybe it's matured enough by now.
Thank you for your time,
--
DataPacRat
"Does aₘᵢₙ=2c²/Θ ? I don't know, but wouldn't it be fascinating if it were?"

jordansparks
Site Admin
Posts: 104
Joined: Thu Aug 27, 2015 3:59 pm

Re: 1% chance of survival

Postby jordansparks » Fri Mar 29, 2019 11:16 am

When I go to cryonics calculator, all the risks are clearly for phase II. So their characterization as "success" vs "failure" is accurate in the context of phase II. But it doesn't address phase I at all. Yet when you say that you are looking out for ways to improve that number, you are obviously talking about phase I quality. Those are very different numbers. What I think you might be saying is:
Phase I quality: 50%
Phase II success vs failure: 12%
You are then multiplying them together to get your 6%. But you really should leave them as two completely separate numbers because they are fundamentally different measures.

User avatar
DataPacRat
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Mar 18, 2018 5:53 am
Location: Niagara, Canada
Contact:

Re: 1% chance of survival

Postby DataPacRat » Fri Mar 29, 2019 11:37 am

jordansparks wrote:When I go to cryonics calculator, all the risks are clearly for phase II. So their characterization as "success" vs "failure" is accurate in the context of phase II. But it doesn't address phase I at all. Yet when you say that you are looking out for ways to improve that number, you are obviously talking about phase I quality. Those are very different numbers. What I think you might be saying is:
Phase I quality: 50%
Phase II success vs failure: 12%
You are then multiplying them together to get your 6%. But you really should leave them as two completely separate numbers because they are fundamentally different measures.


It's been a while, so I'd have to recalculate from scratch to remember how my numbers were derived. :)

I do recall that one of the factors I thought hard about was 'quality of initial cryopreservation'. For example, a good-quality vitrification with little ischemic damage might be able to be revived with the tech of 2070 AD; while a poor-quality preservation that's nearly a straight freeze might require advanced reconstruction and interpolation techniques (such as deriving brain structures based on personal writings and related "mindfile" library data) that won't be developed until 2130 AD. If that person's cryonic suspension organization is going to go out of business in 2129 AD, then they've got every incentive possible to improve what you're calling Phase I. They've also got incentives to try to improve their CSO's stability, so that it lasts until appropriate revival tech is developed; and to maximize the funds that will be available to pay for such revival.

At the moment, I don't have any skills in cryobiology, or in PR, and I'm on a fixed income, among other limits; which put some significant restrictions on what I can do to improve the odds of my own eventual revival, let alone anyone else's. Other people face different limits.

I seem to have lost track of where I'm going with this - I could blame the lumbago, but I'm hoping that we're really just looking at the same elephant from different angles.
Thank you for your time,
--
DataPacRat
"Does aₘᵢₙ=2c²/Θ ? I don't know, but wouldn't it be fascinating if it were?"

Mati_Roy
Posts: 10
Joined: Fri Jan 11, 2019 5:42 pm

Re: 1% chance of survival

Postby Mati_Roy » Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:52 am

Jordan, I mostly agree with what you're saying.

But I still say things like "I'm 40% confident that a cryopreservation under ideal conditions for our current technology will preserve more than 50% of my memories". I still think having a credence distribution over fraction of identity preserved make sense because we (or at least I) don't currently know what fraction of memories are being preserved (so that remains a probabilistic endeavor, even just considering phase I).

I'm curious how likely you think that the person to have been cryopreserved with the highest quality so far has to a) have >90% of their memories preserved, b) have 10% to 90% preserved, or c) have <10% preserved. I have the impression (but could definitely be wrong) that (a) and (c) are more likely as memories would probably degrade at a similar rate.


Return to “Forum”