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Old Sep 18, 2013, 12:21 PM   #1
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Apple Chairman Art Levinson to Head Google Spinoff Dedicated to Solving Age-Related Health Issues




Google is launching a new, entirely separate company called Calico. The firm will be dedicated to tacking major, long-term healthcare initiatives like significantly extending the human lifespan.

Calico will be helmed by Arthur Levinson, the chairman and former CEO of biotech firm Genentech. Levinson is also a longtime board member and Chairman of Apple, and a director of Hoffmann-La Roche, a Swiss healthcare and pharmaceutical firm.

In a Google press release, Apple CEO Tim Cook spoke about Art Levinson, who will remain on the board at Apple:
Quote:
Tim Cook, Chief Executive Officer of Apple, said: "For too many of our friends and family, life has been cut short or the quality of their life is too often lacking. Art is one of the crazy ones who thinks it doesn't have to be this way. There is no one better suited to lead this mission and I am excited to see the results."
Time Magazine will put the new company on its cover next week, under the headline "Can Google Solve Death?"

The magazine spoke to Google CEO and co-founder Larry Page about the venture, which Page hopes can take a moonshot and perhaps solve some major health issues by looking at long-term healthcare R&D that isn't based on quarter-by-quarter profits.
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"In some industries, it takes ten or 20 years to go from an idea to something being real. Healthcare is certainly one of those ares," said Page. "Maybe we should shoot for the things that are really, really important so ten or 20 years from now we have those things done."
Calico will be an entirely separate entity from Google, operating outside the Google X research arm that is responsible for Google Glass and the company's self-driving car project.

Article Link: Apple Chairman Art Levinson to Head Google Spinoff Dedicated to Solving Age-Related Health Issues
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 12:28 PM   #2
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Hmm...I'm not sure why Apple would keep Levinson on as chairman. And WTF is Tim Cook giving comments in a Google press release?!! Also, I don't think it's coincidental that Google announced this the week Apple releases new software and iPhones.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 12:31 PM   #3
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Good, I'm glad someone with money is trying to solve this problem. There are plenty of smart people who have the knowledge and desire to work on this type of medicine, but money is always the limiting factor.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 12:32 PM   #4
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Seems... far fetched, but who knows?

The implications for society of longer lifespans are fairly staggering. Imagine if people have 40, 50 year retirements or longer? Or, would people be able to stay healthy and just work for another 20 years or so. Imagine the implications for the world population?
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 12:35 PM   #5
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I'd like to see this company bring in Apple, Microsoft, Intel, Adobe, and other tech giants to lead the way into healthcare.

Imagine what can be done with the money and resources all these companies can provide.

If this is done for non-profit, imagine what existing healthcare companies will be faced with. Its about time all these billions of dollars goes to something important.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 12:45 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by unplugme71 View Post
I'd like to see this company bring in Apple, Microsoft, Intel, Adobe, and other tech giants to lead the way into healthcare.

Imagine what can be done with the money and resources all these companies can provide.

If this is done for non-profit, imagine what existing healthcare companies will be faced with. Its about time all these billions of dollars goes to something important.
As long as this company is independent from Google.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 12:46 PM   #7
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Aging is not a health problem. It's natural. Without death none of us would be alive. When are these rich guys with nothing else to do going to realize that when it's their time to go, it's their time to go. Such self-importance. Not that this research will get anywhere. Huge waste of time and money.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 12:53 PM   #8
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Will now wait to see how long Art is accused of "stealing" from Apple and giving intel to Google

Will now wait for someone to comment how they wouldn't trust any health related information with a spin-off from Google because they will just sell it for advertising. I can see it now "I wouldn't take that vaccine developed by the spinoff from Google. They probably inserted some nanochips in there to track my every move"
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 01:16 PM   #9
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Extending life causes more problems than it solves, at the moment. Imagine you can extend life to up to 200 years. They'd need medication and machines for most of the time and they're bearly alive. Morally, you are bound to keep those people alive as long as possible, but thinking more rationally, you are building a trap. I don't think "solving death" is something people actually want. Personally, I'm scared of that idea.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 01:17 PM   #10
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Good luck, Calico. We lost Steve Jobs but Arthur Levinson knows what he's doing so maybe now Tim Cook can live forever.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 01:32 PM   #11
unplugme71
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post
As long as this company is independent from Google.
It mentioned its an entirely separate company.

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by SgtPepper12 View Post
Extending life causes more problems than it solves, at the moment. Imagine you can extend life to up to 200 years. They'd need medication and machines for most of the time and they're bearly alive. Morally, you are bound to keep those people alive as long as possible, but thinking more rationally, you are building a trap. I don't think "solving death" is something people actually want. Personally, I'm scared of that idea.
First: It's barely, not bearly.

Second: I don't think people care to live longer. People just want the ability to live it healthy until their time is up. (eg. someone who has a tumor, can have it removed, and returned to 100% normal health). Natural death is what we all hope for.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 01:42 PM   #12
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And people say Apple is too full of itself.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 01:44 PM   #13
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Larry is trying to buy immortality?
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 01:53 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by MichaelJohnston View Post
Good, I'm glad someone with money is trying to solve this problem. There are plenty of smart people who have the knowledge and desire to work on this type of medicine, but money is always the limiting factor.
Yeah, exactly. But money isn't leadership. The wording in the article and by the quoted individuals is kind of obnoxious.

I hope this tech giant wealthy guy doesn't think this is a simple fix. As Cooke said... 20 years down the line. And that's probably optimistic.

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by unplugme71 View Post

Second: I don't think people care to live longer. People just want the ability to live it healthy until their time is up. (eg. someone who has a tumor, can have it removed, and returned to 100% normal health). Natural death is what we all hope for.
You kidding? I want to live forever. Healthfully, yes. But I sure as hell (not that i believe in hell) do want more life. My life has been wasted by playing the games of my society and being screwed by it. I need way more lifespan to fix what was done to me emotionally, socially, and economically. There's no way I can scrape my carcass out of the 99% in what time I've left.

"I want more life fuc#er!"

(I hate censoring myself, it's so childish. Does this site even care?)
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 01:53 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by unplugme71 View Post
Second: I don't think people care to live longer. People just want the ability to live it healthy until their time is up. (eg. someone who has a tumor, can have it removed, and returned to 100% normal health). Natural death is what we all hope for.
People don't want to live longer? Well, I do, so that kind of shoots your theory.

Dying of cancer is a totally natural death, not that anyone would choose to go that way, except over the many others that even more unpleasant.

The issue here is the vague mission of this company. What are their goals? How are they going to achieve them? Not to be too cynical here, but it seems to me like this is the ultimate good guy move by Google. They get great press, even if this company does nothing of use, which seems highly likely.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 01:58 PM   #16
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Can Google solve Death?
Maybe. But only if they cancel the self-driving car project.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 02:10 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by ValSalva View Post
Aging is not a health problem. It's natural.
Oh, really? Not long ago lifespans averaged half as long as they do today. Clean water, sanitation and such are responsible for most of that doubling of lifespans. Sometimes simple little things reduce the death rate and aging of organisms. "Aging" is quite complicated. Perhaps with some other simple things it might again be doubled. I realize there are some people who are bored with life and want to move on but some of us are quite busy and have a lot more to do before we're done. Another thousand years might make a dent in my to-do list...

Quote:
Originally Posted by ValSalva View Post
Without death none of us would be alive.
Hmm... Yet some organisms live for thousands of years and their descendants are also alive.

----------

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Originally Posted by SgtPepper12 View Post
Extending life causes more problems than it solves, at the moment. Imagine you can extend life to up to 200 years. They'd need medication and machines for most of the time and they're bearly alive.
No, you're thinking of sickness. Aging is merely getting older. We now get older and live much longer healthier lives than the average person did a century or so ago. Simply solving some basic problems like sanitation and clean water made a big difference. Other small differences could keep people healthy for centuries, or indefinitely. People who wanted to would be able to continue living productive, creative lives. You might want to stop but many of us are still actively engaged with life into advanced ages and have long to-do lists we want to keep working on. I for one enjoy the process.

What probably does need to be canceled is the concept of Retirement. That is a modern idea that should be killed.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 02:17 PM   #18
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The more I think about this, the more it seems like the creepiest publicity stunt in history.

First, you'd think this was the world's first effort to study age and health issues. Well, hardly. Many not-for-profits have been on this task for decades. Hey, but they're not run by tech geeks, so what do they know?

Second, the founders of Google are billionaires many times over. If they wanted to start a charitable corporation to advance health issues, they could have endowed one, and probably attracted the support of other wealthy benefactors. But instead, they formed it under the Google flag. Chilly, brrr.

Finally, is this a charitable corporation, or what? Are they planning on selling health and longevity, assuming they come up with anything?

The entire thing is bizarre.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 02:20 PM   #19
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Can Google solve Death?
Maybe. But only if they cancel the self-driving car project.
I expect that self-driving cars will actually save lives, but that occasional failures will be huge black eyes for publicity. Imagine if someone told us that on average flying is safer than driving. We might believe them until a single plane crash frightens us into thinking that flying is much more dangerous.

Google has the funds to study very challenging problems like these. I don't know how successful they'll be but I'm glad they're funding the projects.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 02:29 PM   #20
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Does death need solving?
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 02:33 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post
As long as this company is independent from Google.
If this company remains a Google satellite/subsidiary, and its leader is an Apple Board Chairman.... then this is a massive conflict of interest. The same way that resulted in a Federal investigation into Eric Schmidt (that would be me!) being a Google mole inside Jobs-era Apple.

The conflict of interest is erased once this new company becomes completely independent from Google.... which does not seem to be the case.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 02:34 PM   #22
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A PR exercise in public vanity.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 02:37 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by IJ Reilly View Post
The more I think about this, the more it seems like the creepiest publicity stunt in history.

First, you'd think this was the world's first effort to study age and health issues. Well, hardly. Many not-for-profits have been on this task for decades. Hey, but they're not run by tech geeks, so what do they know?

Second, the founders of Google are billionaires many times over. If they wanted to start a charitable corporation to advance health issues, they could have endowed one, and probably attracted the support of other wealthy benefactors. But instead, they formed it under the Google flag. Chilly, brrr.

Finally, is this a charitable corporation, or what? Are they planning on selling health and longevity, assuming they come up with anything?

The entire thing is bizarre.
But it got Google on the front page of Time Magazine the same week Apple is launching new iPhones. Only good thing is people don't read magazines anymore.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 02:42 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by IJ Reilly View Post
The more I think about this, the more it seems like the creepiest publicity stunt in history.

First, you'd think this was the world's first effort to study age and health issues. Well, hardly. Many not-for-profits have been on this task for decades. Hey, but they're not run by tech geeks, so what do they know?

Second, the founders of Google are billionaires many times over. If they wanted to start a charitable corporation to advance health issues, they could have endowed one, and probably attracted the support of other wealthy benefactors. But instead, they formed it under the Google flag. Chilly, brrr.

Finally, is this a charitable corporation, or what? Are they planning on selling health and longevity, assuming they come up with anything?

The entire thing is bizarre.
Google... yes, creepy is the right word.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 02:43 PM   #25
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longer lifespans will lead to manned deep space exploration
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