How to Wrestle with Technology's Disturbing Philosophical Implications

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Reader Comments (29)

The worst would be the third generation; they would be a kid forever and never be able to do anything without the consent of their parents.

May 15, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAduvash

One of your funniest comics! You touch in on the real, inconvenient but definitely likely overwhelming social implications of this technology we all like to think will save "us".

May 15, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSean

I'm still terrified by the announcement some lab made years ago that claimed they had developed a drug that made sleep unnecessary - supposedly with no side effects, but they never said how long the study had been running, and sleep is the body's repair and maintenance cycle.
If that drug ever got out, it wouldn't mean more free time, because employers would expect us to work sixteen hours a day for the same pay we now make in eight to twelve. (cell phones were supposed to give us more free time, but they just make it easier for employers to put us on call)
When they invent the means to immortality, I definitely want to be safely dead.
...Dealing with the same people--FOREVER?!

May 15, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDee

Would there be a third generation? (Besides 1. The Rich, 2. The Necessary, 3. The Non-Unemployed.) If you're immortal, why have kids?

If the third generation gets immortaled when they are kids (and more likely you'd have the process when you are an adult), then, since their parents inevitably will split up eventually - say the chance of your relationship surviving any one year is 99 per cent, it's still Russian roulette (although strictly that is a game played with five bullets...) - then you're paying child support FOREVER. And so Immortal Generation 2 is still the Suck Generation.

On the other hand, since the Generation 3 kids are immortal, there is no reason for their parents not to consent to most of the things they want to do. Except borrow the car.

May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRobert Carnegie

I've looked at your comments section for a while now. No trolls, no abuse, spelling approximately correct, no obscenities. Obviously I've connected with the comments section of another universe. Basic Instructions must be a quantum tunnel to an alternate reality.

Prove me wrong, I dare you.

Note from Scott: The quality of my comments section is just another way in which I am the luckiest guy I know.

May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterErbuline

I am impressed by the spin. Did not see that one coming. Kudos on another golden comic.

May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterFrank

@ Erbuline

Yes! I've thought of that as well. It's bizarre. The only other place that I know of which is similar in this department are the various home-brewing forums that are abound. It's like taking a vacation on the internet.

May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterEinar

First panel is the funniest today!

May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSheherazahde

Would immortals remain able to reproduce forever? You could wind up with couples who have hundreds of kids, and couples who get nagged by their parents for 700 years about why they don't have grandchildren yet.

May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKate

Why have my last 17 trolling, abusive, nasty, misspelled and obscene posts not been approved for display?

May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMark

The first panel pretty much says everything there is to say about everything. Sadly.

May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTom

Yes, Erbuline, there is a sane and rational wee little corner of the webiverse. A tad unusual that it can be found attached to a webcomic, admittedly the best webcomic in the webiverse, but still. If you like that kind of thing, the comments on Michael Shermer's blogs are usually pretty high quality too, although sometimes they get a bit heated and personal depending on the subject matter at hand.

Regarding immortality, no matter what my age I would be on the first colony ship to Alpha Centauri! No hanging out with my friends forever (unless they came along of course)

May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSolak

I just want a mecha/mech suit please and thank you. It has to have a badass cockpit though.

May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAdam

Funny Stuff. Reminds me of the Mitchell and Webb Look skit on immortal children.

May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMitchell S.

Every. Panel. Win.

May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPhil

first post!!!!

May 16, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterthat guy

While the mech suit sounds pretty awesome, I'm not sure I'd enjoy spending 1000 years with incontinence.

May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPatrick

@Robert Carnegie:

If you do have kids and are immortal, are they babies forever? Thanks to George Carlin who first raised a similar query: "If an elderly woman gets pregnant, does she have an adult?"

And yes, this comic and the comments section is a testament to proper 'nunciation and grammar, dogg, and I applaud it. I heard from a co-worker that soon prepositions will be an acceptable end to a sentence. I might literally explode from rage if that is put into effect.

May 16, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterpooker

It wouldn't take too long, centuries max, before old age could be reversed and you'd get your buff 25-yr old body back.

I'd want to be in the first generation. You'd be in a good position to have retirement investments sorted out before the economy transitioned. Retirement investment would become a lot more competitive and low-return when everyone expects to need them, and no-one's selling.

May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

The question was posed above "why have kids if you are an immortal?" and the reason is clear. You have you want to kill yourself, and the world will not totally depopulate/overpopulate. It's a total mad scheme.

Brilliant comic as always.

May 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterW.R.Printz


May 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLollomat

Comments having to be approved makes it a lot harder to troll. You can only do it if you are exceedingly subtle about it, like hiding a message across multiple comments or something. Not that I've done that or anything. That would take a lot of patience and planning.

Just so we're clear, I didn't do anything like that. I promise. This is definitely not me trying to say I didn't do it in order to hide the fact that I did.

May 17, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterbobo

Robert Carnegie, I am certain that immortal heterosexuals will continue to have sex. Children are a natural byproduct.

May 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTom

The fourth generation would be almost non-existent, after the second sees what happened to the third..

May 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTan

A comic inspired by your last sponsor, perhaps?

May 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBeardo

Lol You might be the world's first meta-troll
Also, this comic was very funny and insightful. The ways in which society would have to change if we were inmortal are too many to count.

May 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAlexalcan


According to grammar girl (, a preposition is already an acceptable word to end a sentence with. (See how I did that.) She calls it a "top ten grammar myth".

May 21, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJohn

Actually, since women come with a limited number of eggs to begin with, I think what the immortal generations would do is put a few eggs in deep freeze until they decide that they want kids. Once a woman reaches, say, 70 years of age, she wouldn't need birth control ever!

May 31, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSunshine

Second would be worst. Having to care for your kids and parents for eternity

March 18, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterDestructicon
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