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RE: [nanotech] Digest Number 177

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  • Eugene Leitl
    ... I don t know what progress is. The word is by now quite meaningless. ... But nanotech gives you incremental profits. It s just that the more you invest,
    Message 1 of 53 , Mar 16, 2000
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      Clements, Robert writes:
      >
      > What i'm saying as NT's visions of progress are not inherently universal; &

      I don't know what progress is. The word is by now quite meaningless.

      > if vague dreams of wonders will probably not attract broad financial support
      > (& even if it does, the whole thing might blow up in everyone's faces, as
      > was the case with both Iridium & Monsanto). As a result, it's a bit silly to
      > argue to argue that your vision of NT progress is somehow inevitable...
      > which is where this argument originally begin.

      But nanotech gives you incremental profits. It's just that the more
      you invest, the more starts coming back. Don't you think the
      semiconductor people won't take autoassembly of 2d mosaics by
      self-organization of Si-surface absorbed highly designed organic muck
      when they run into structure size and yield troubles? They'll have to,
      or get out of business. The protein people are working like crazy on
      PFP. Because molecular medicine is really really major big bucks, and
      it's already happening via the combinatorial chemistry route. Proximal
      probe is necessary for both research and quality control, especially
      in semiconductor fabbing, and manipulative proximal probe could be
      useful for mask patterning, and prototyping, and what not. There are
      many paths, most of them profitable, and they all converge.

      There are so many ways to skin a weasel.

      Even if a few people would be aware that technoholocaust is at hand,
      it wouldn't matter. Economic realities would still make it happen, and
      the herd wouldn't realize what was going on, until the doors of the
      slaughterhouse have been rammed shut behind them.

      I do not know whether this advocatus diaboli, or not. It doesn't
      matter much which, anyway.
    • Eugene Leitl
      ... About the same as South American marsupials were tolerated by mammals, I guess. Or as prebiotic ursoup was tolerated by the first autoreplicators, and
      Message 53 of 53 , Mar 28, 2000
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        Samantha Atkins writes:

        > Fine. But the point of bringing the book up was as an example of how
        > transhuman and human species (and several things in-between) might all
        > exist and tolerate each other. Infinite increasing space is not

        About the same as South American marsupials were tolerated by mammals,
        I guess. Or as prebiotic ursoup was tolerated by the first
        autoreplicators, and their successors.

        > necessary to that point. Nor is it inevitable that exponential growth
        > is the norm although many of your posts seem to assume that it is and
        > this will lead to an inevitable conflict that will wipe out humanity as
        > we know it.

        Stochastic variation over a population. Self-selection for most
        autoreplicative systems. It ain't pretty, but this is how the world
        works. You might reject it, but you will have to eventually deal with
        it, so putting on blinders is not a constructive strategy. YMMV.

        > Infinite enlightenment is not required for peaceful coexistence. Just a
        > bit of tolerance. Much, much easier to come by. Especially if the

        Tolerance requires sentience. Water hyacinth is not sentient, nor are
        Oz rabbits sentient.

        > interests of the different groups involved diverge enough and/or the
        > supply of what they commonly want is more than sufficient for all
        > concerned.

        > I expect they will have their bad-asses and that they will be in some
        > sense policed and dealt with much as our own are.

        Police and nuke microorganisms out of existance, in an attempt to keep
        a few patches of agar sustainably uncolonized. Would seem an excersise
        in futility, wouldn't it? Moreover, why would you do it? Is agar so
        dear to your heart to go through all the hassle?

        > Perhaps it is because you are not harping on evolutionary biology basics
        > but own an interpretation of evolution and the application of that
        > interpretation to future species whose characteristics we can only
        > vaguely guess. The introduction of intelligence throws a bit of a kink
        > in too simplistic evolutionary models.

        Does intelligence give you complete control over yourself and the rest
        of the biosphere? Do you understand the impact of Godel and
        undecidedability on information ecologies?

        > Why exactly will they have little to fear from each other? Where is the

        For the same reason you don't expect to be eaten alive when walking
        out of your house door. Unless you happen to be a piece of
        comestibles, you're more or less safe, especially if you're at the top
        of the food chain. But the food is far from being safe.

        > natural competition with flesh beings for all too limited mutual desired
        > resources?
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