information-theoretic death

English edit

Etymology edit

information theory +‎ -ic +‎ death, based on clinical death. Coined by American cryptographer and cryonicist Ralph Merkle.

Noun edit

information-theoretic death (usually uncountable, plural information-theoretic deaths)

  1. The point at which a person's unique memories and individual personality traits are no longer present in a form that could be read or inferred by future technologies; the complete loss of the information that defines an individual.
    • 2021, Calvin Mercer, Tracy J. Trothen, Religion and the Technological Future: An Introduction to Biohacking, Artificial Intelligence, and Transhumanism, Springer Nature, →ISBN, page 147:
      Information-theoretic death occurs several hours following clinical death. Dying is a process, and in the ideal case cryonics intervention procedures begin immediately after the heart stops beating and prior to brain death.