Re: Fwd: Ray Kurzweil debates Bill Joy on NPR "Science Friday"Friday at 3 pm

From: Zero Powers (
Date: Fri Mar 17 2000 - 14:49:50 MST

I listened to the show. What can I say? I'm starting to believe that Bill
is just trying to make a name for himself in the eyes of the public is the
lone voice of reason in the issue. I can certainly sympathize with his
concern about the potential pitfalls of GNR, but I think he's being a little
"over the top" in his characterizations of the risks.

In particular, I'm a little disappointed that Bill not once made mention of
the fact that the smart people, like those over at Foresight, have been
thinking long and hard about these issues and attempting to come up with
workable policies, for well over a decade now. This seems a little bit
disingenuous of him, particularly since he is well aware of the work going
on at Foresight (and the fact that spoke at the very first Foresight

He also seems to refuse to recognize the fact that it is *impossible* for
anyone to stop GNR development, and the best that we can do is to attempt to
get all the various GNR efforts to coordinate their efforts and to share
their information to try to keep any particular camp from obtaining an
insurmountable lead.

Worst, he doesn't offer *any* solution. He doesn't appear to be doing
anything but screaming his lungs out about a problem without a solution. My
question is "what's the point in that?" At first, I didn't see any problems
with Bill's attempt to introduce this into the arena of public discourse.
But now I fear that the only effect might be to cause trepidation in the US,
leaving Europe and Japan unfettered to take (or increase) the lead over the
US. Who wants that?!?

The more I think about it, the more I'm inclined to say "Hey Bill, shut the
hell up!"

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