Google has invested in a new venture called California Life Company (or Calico), with a goal of helping people to live longer — actually a lot longer upto 170 years. For most of us, Google’s investment into longevity was a surprise. But Google is only backing Calico. What Google is good at is the Data. It can bring data related to research to the table.
For an example of how data can impact health, just look to Google’s Flu Trends, which predicted flu outbreaks based on search data, although it turned out to be accurate only in certain cases.
In a TIME profile, Larry Page, Google’s CEO said that solving individual diseases, even ones as pervasive as cancer, would not increase life expectancy by much. To re frame, cancer is the symptom; the true disease is aging itself. As we age and our cells wear down, it causes other old-age diseases.
Aubrey de Grey, chief science officer of the SENS Research Foundation, presented a TED Talk on anti-aging saying
“Today we spend an incredible amount (of money) out of keeping people alive in a bad state of health,”
The idea is that instead of extending a patient’s elderly years, it would extend your life with better health (as Mashable puts it, “an extra decade of being 30, rather than an extra decade of being 90”).
But at the same time it sounded like something that would increase the split between the rich and the poor, leaving millionaires to live as long as they like. The rich people are already going for cryonics spending millions.
Cryonics is the low-temperature preservation of humans and animals, with the hope that healing and returning them to consciousness may be possible in the future – wikipedia
But the thing is even with increased lifespan, you can’t beat death. This research is not about death its about ageing.