[FoRK] Dude, where’s my job?
sdw at lig.net
Thu Jan 15 21:02:41 PST 2009
Eugen Leitl wrote:
> 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).
There are additional possibilities, neighborhood buried nuclear for
instance and maybe some kind of bio-fuel farm cycle, but TFPV is a great
>> 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.
Sure, long way to go. Doesn't necessarily take long though.
>> 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.
Exactly. As I've said, I don't understand the "we're running out of
water" thing. Totally an energy problem.
>> 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.
I think the latter. Everything will not change overnight. Certain
sectors will gain, take some profit, then become very efficient. Slow,
Exciting building blocks are appearing at an increasing rate. So, I
think it is sort of happening. Autonomous vehicles are already solved.
Imagine that. No, wait, too late, it's already done and about to be a
commercial product in multiple sectors. Brad Templeton's pushing the
point that this will revolutionize transportation. Cars will drive
themselves to you (Kit, I need you), then back to their parking spot or
motor pool. Etc.
There is a delay between feasibility and the visionary -> +resources ->
+opportunity -> +crystallizing event sequence that suddenly kicks out a
proof of concepts that sparks excitement. Hard problems have been
>> In other words, many key issues can be solved with enough energy and
>> automation (where automation includes leveraging human intelligence in
>> various ways).
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