[FoRK] Malthusian machinations

Eugen Leitl eugen at leitl.org
Tue Jun 15 09:49:25 PDT 2010

On Tue, Jun 15, 2010 at 11:21:05AM -0500, Jeff Bone wrote:

> A few questions.
> Aren't these assertions mildly incompatible?
> I'd assumed that your thin-print method was what you were referring to 
> as machine phase;  though incremental the implication, I thought, was 

No, no. Machine-phase is numerically controlled 
chemical bond formation by nanorobotics. Stuff like http://www.rfreitas.com/

It would very likely work but the bootstrap process is extremely
difficult. Since almost nobody is working on it at the moment the
future development is completely unpredictable.

I'm not considering the (extremely disruptive) impact of MNT
for mid-term (up to 2080, or so) predictions.

> a gradually-automated and increasingly "smart" industrial process improvement.  
> No?  Re:  that process, that's the one for which I think you're underestimating 
> the costs (but overestimating the timeframes given adequate funding, which is 
> not in fact practical as we've already agreed.)
> If we can't engineer harvestable species or clusters and won't be able to until we're 
> pretty far down the road, then how do we do this:
> On Jun 15, 2010, at 8:44, Eugen Leitl <eugen at leitl.org> wrote:
> > solar panels grow like trees.
> ???
> (I interpreted your statement as:  pass through machine phase to an advanced biocentric method.  Apparently that's not what you meant?  That was the idea I was thinking was particularly interesting...  seems to me the phase-cycle most likely goes:  industrial processes -> bio-bootstrap -> advanced machines...)
> Also, tangential:
> > When oil hits 80, economy tanks.
> What year / dollars are you assuming, here?  (You might argue that this is somewhat unitless...  also, begs the definition of "tanks.")  I think it's a lowball, but would probably split the difference between this and my $200 / barrel, in 2009 dollars.)

It's not a threshold effect at that, too.

> Re: "a war."  "A?"  At least.  That's the closest thing I've heard in this whole conversation, from anyone, me included, to certainty assuming we fall too far into the gap.  Arguably, already happening.

There are usually wars in a zero-sum resource situation. I am not
talking empire-building or little proxy wars, but full-blown nuclear
exchanges among major players.

Eugen* Leitl <a href="http://leitl.org">leitl</a> http://leitl.org
ICBM: 48.07100, 11.36820 http://www.ativel.com http://postbiota.org
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