Alcor News

Alcor News

News Blog of the Alcor Life Extension Foundation

New Volunteer Opportunity

What is the top way to educate others about cryonics? Word of mouth referral. Add your name to our list of “membership growth activists” who are willing to speak with prospective members about cryonics and Alcor’s membership program.

You will only call people with an interest in cryonics who want to be contacted (no cold calls).   Alcor will notify you of any opportunities in your area.

If you’re interested, email: jennifer@alcor.org     Find more volunteer opportunities

Alcor News Update

Tanya Jones wrote a post for Alcor News explaining Alcor’s challenges and vision/efforts for overcoming them. The blog was opened for comments, as well.

http://www.alcornews.org/weblog/2008/01/update_on_recent_progress.html#more

This has resulted in several positive outcomes. Alcor has received multiple compliments, both public and private, including one from a prospective member who wrote:

“…I have been following Alcor news and happens for some time. I wanted to comment on the increased transparency I’ve noticed recently and let you know how wonderful I think it is…I think you are doing a great job and moving in the right direction with the openness I am seeing…I have had an information packet sitting on my desk for some time. The recent changes I have seen have been one of the strongest influences increasing my trust in Alcor and have prompted me to complete my application and send it in.”

There was also a largely positive blog post made by the Methuselah Foundation:
http://www.mprize.org/index.php?ctype=news&pagename=blogdetaildisplay&BID=2008012-21114459&detaildisplay=Y

Research and Development

We regret the departure of Chana de Wolf, which will put our cardiopulmonary bypass research on hold as we search for a replacement.

Steve Van Sickle will assume those duties until a full-time research associate is found. Alcor received numerous resumes and phone calls and will narrow down the selection in the coming weeks.

Clinical and Readiness

Orders have been placed for the parts and rescue baskets necessary to the construction of our ice bath inventory. A list has been assembled for the components of our new cardiopulmonary support and airway kits, and the ordering will begin once we complete our inventory of the supplies currently on hand. We are still attempting to find a local manufacturer for the ice bath liners, as the one we had built in California was done a little more sloppily than we would like.

The new liner was tested, and it held approximately 200 pounds of ice cold for 95 hours in a room that was on average 17 degrees C/63 degrees F. In warmer temperatures, it should last at least 48 hours. The liner also did not quite fit around a Ziegler case, being a foot too short, but fit inside quite nicely.

We have also completed the construction of our hands-free washing station across from the operating room. This will ensure that surgeons scrubbing in for a procedure do not have to request someone else shut the water off, because the faucet is controlled by foot pedal.

Engineering Development

Final completion of the software for the advanced perfusion system is awaiting final wiring of the system. Given the large number of data acquisition channels and control features, we want this design to be both easy to use and robust in construction.

We are closing in on a final configuration for the new ATP. It appears at this time that we will meet our goal of being able to combine the pump and perfusate in one package

Administrative Report

Membership Statistics
On January 31, 2008, Alcor had 842 members on its Emergency Responsibility List. Seven memberships were approved during this month, no memberships were reinstated, two memberships were cancelled and one member was cryopreserved. Overall, there was a net gain of four members this month.

Applicant Statistics
Eleven new applicants were added, seven applicants were converted to members and three applicants were cancelled (due to nonpayment of Extended App. Fees), resulting in a net gain of 1 applicant for this month.

Information Packets
275 info packs were requested this month, 205 were from the US, UK, Canada & Australia and the remaining were handed out during facility tours or from special request. When reviewing the source we found that when there is a media broadcast that is about or includes Alcor the number of requests increases. The sources of info pack requests for the month indicate the following:

• A documentary titled Freeze Me aired on the National Geographic Channel in Australia, Canada, and possibly other countries (including the US)

• There were other TV shows that aired in Canada that may have contributed (ie Mystery Hunters and YTV)

• The Modern Marvels episode Deep Freeze aired again in the US on 01/29

• A website called “Totally Free Stuff” advertises Alcor’s DVD The Limitless Future and links site visitors to Alcor’s free information page

• A dozen or so people mentioned Alcor’s advertisement in LEF Magazine, an article in the New York Times, The First Immortal, and Wikipedia as their source of referral

• There were also a handful of referrals from Alcor members.
The average total of 275 info packs sent per month in 2008 as compared to 129 in 2007. There were 30,473 website hits for the month of January.

Media
Tanya Jones gave an interview to Wendy Grossman, a reporter for a daily newspaper in the UK called, The Guardian. To read this article, go to:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2008/feb/14/research.cryonics

Accounting
We continue to regularly contact those who are behind on their dues via letters, emails and/or phone calls. Those who have made payment commitments account for approximately 62% of the outstanding amount shown below for January. These members are largely adhering to their commitments thus far, and we will continue to monitor such on a monthly basis. There are still about 20 members who are unresponsive to our collection efforts. Some of them will likely be terminated during the first quarter, following further attempts to resolve their accounts.

Conference DVD
Another source of significant effort was completing a second viewing and editing session for the 7th Alcor Conference DVD set. The next steps are to make final adjustments to the slides, correct sound issues, and create menus, before sending the DVDs into replication.

Research Associate Position

Chana de Wolf recently announced her resignation as Alcor’s Research Associate. Chana was hired in July 2006 to build Alcor’s cardiopulmonary bypass laboratory, a project that is now largely complete. Chana was originally hired as a temporary employee, and we are pleased that she was able to stay longer than we initially expected.

We appreciate Chana’s efforts during her employement at Alcor and wish her well in her endeavors. A replacement is being actively sought.