[FoRK] Dude, where’s my job?

Eugen Leitl eugen at leitl.org
Thu Jan 15 10:16:27 PST 2009

On Thu, Jan 15, 2009 at 08:41:32AM -0800, Stephen Williams wrote:

> Exactly.  1) Make and distribute cheap energy (or distribute making 

It looks like the latter is going to win, via thin-film PV. Innovation
in energy is going to restart, once fossil shoots through the ceiling again
(current prices means producing at loss, whereas heavy infrastructure
investments are needed due to peak oil and are now on hold, which makes 
for scary sudden price graphs).

> cheap energy).  2) Make effective automation with intelligence.  With 

We need a way to close the material flow loops. Lacking that, do enrichment
of dilute resources with lots of cheap energy input. Current automation
does a lousy job in terms of own sustainability, nevermind autopoiesis.

> those two, you get plentiful, cheap water, agriculture, manufacturing, 
> building, homesteading formerly inhospitable locales both inland and at 

The revolutionary aspect of thin-film PV is that grid ceases to be relevant.
Potable water is suddenly everywhere, with only some modest additional hardware.

> sea.  That solves food, living space, quality of life, and subhuman 
> (i.e. drudge manufacturing, farming) labor needs.  Completely doable, 
> and these things start changing most of the rules at some inflection point.

It's interesting whether we'll be getting a slow collapse interlaced
with strife, or a resurgence into a new era of R&D. I don't see this
happening in EU nor US yet.
> In other words, many key issues can be solved with enough energy and 
> automation (where automation includes leveraging human intelligence in 
> various ways).

Eugen* Leitl <a href="http://leitl.org">leitl</a> http://leitl.org
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