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Section 4 / Page 98

The Chain reaction continued 2/4.

In the world as it is today, there is a growing rift between the very rich and the very poor, but a properly controlled introduction of certain technologies, should not only equalise this scenario it should completely level the playing field. For the starving poor of the world it would be a welcome break and as for the rest of us, if you didn’t like the idea of us all being equal, then wouldn’t that be unreasonable of you. Manufacturing at the atomic scale will mean very little or no waste, plus totally clean energy sources along with everybody’s materialistic needs being met, so what more could any reasonable person ask for?

Think of it like this, imagine you have a Startrek type replicator, not an energy to matter converter, but more a matter to matter converter and instead of your desktop printer you have a mini nano-factory. Pour in some raw materials, download your desired design from the latest p2p swapping system and there you have whatever it is you wanted. Is this the future for us all, or will it become a capitalist / commercially run operation, in which the starving kid in Africa finds themselves not being allowed to have an apple, because companies and lawyers are busy deciding who owns the rights to the apple's design?

Hey, if they can squabble over who owns the patent to certain human genes, then anything is possible?

Laws govern how society acts and behaves to a certain extent, but the big question as I see it, is how are these rules going to be implemented within a society that no longer has the same basic needs as we have today. I mean just because we have intelligent machines and the ability to manipulate matter at the atomic scale, there is still no reason why a mad man couldn’t hold the world to ransom with some type of super nano virus, so what are the powers that be, going to do about that. This as I see it, will become the biggest question of all, control still has to be kept at some level, otherwise chaos wins and the people who are prepared to use fear as a form of control will win over the reasonable. If we allow this technology to proliferate and be introduced by market forces, then the future Bin Ladens of the world, will more than likely be able to acquire it. Money is morally neutral as they say and seeing as how, nothing is truly safe and secure once humans are introduced into any mix, then you really should worry about this potential future threat.

Most people told me, (before September 11th I might add), that this is a scenario that will never happen, but Iraq was a good indicator of how a populace could and was controlled by the use of fear. The coming together for the common good is not something that happens a lot in Iraq. So if any reasonable government or company thinks it can control the spread of nanotechnology and the impact it is going to have, then they could find themselves in another nuclear arms race and we all know what’s happening there. Unlike nuclear weapons, the proliferation of nanotechnology will be uncontrollable, so plans have to be made well in advance of its actual arrival, even though its development is going on all around us. The spread and control of certain technologies can not be controlled in a world that operates the way it does today?

My bombs bigger than your bomb.

In an A,I,, nanotech future, if you see my point?


Eric Drexler is probably the most well known nanotechnology expert and his ideas are hard to dismiss, I mention him because it wouldn’t be fair to leave him out. Drexler’s dream of a utopian society using nanotechnology as a basis for all manufacturing could turn into the world’s biggest nightmare, that's if we don’t maintain some form of control. How this control could be achieved is something that I personally have not figured out completely, but I do have an idea. The powers that be will have to figure out a new type of control mechanism other than money. Otherwise chaos could become the new order of the day, because most people, however educated still need rules, to prevent them from doing all the things they would like to do. Now I’m not saying people shouldn’t be able to do all of the things they want, but if we all did exactly what we wanted, all of the time, then chaos would be the result and nothing would get done. So any new control mechanism, other than money has to be planned for and agreed upon by the masses before it is implemented. Otherwise people will revolt against any decisions made without their general consent. Unlike any other problem in human history, the powers that be are going to find themselves having to come to terms with the fact that nobody will have to work, at least in the same way we do today. So maintaining a monetary based society and economy as it is today will be pointless and any government that tries, will find themselves being faced with the problems that I have pointed out.

So how close are we to this technological nightmare or utopia, well the big problem is that there are so many areas in which true nanotechnology could actually arise, because a lot of companies and even major governments are working on it. The problem is that these types of breakthroughs often come from a totally different field. So the truth is, nobody can give a totally accurate time frame for this breakthrough, but the path is clear and the consequences are equally clear, to anybody who has spent anytime thinking about these things. See the Rand Report.

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