Gary Helms wrote:
>In the scenario proposed [i.e. a nanotech society
>advanced enough to be capable of providing
>reality-level VR and an end to scarcity] an individual
>motivated strongly by the desire for power over others
>or "the material world" who could not sublimate that
>desire in a VR simulation would be extremely dangerous
>to all other members of that society. They will have
>vast powers to deal with that threat, and probably
I find it hard to believe that a very intelligent, unethical and power-hungry individual would be contented by playing "Civilization XXV, the VR edition!" Of course that individual could be very dangerous and that is why there would need to be checks and balances in society to keep people like him or her from hurting others.
You mentioned vast powers that would deal with this threat and the problem is that a very intelligent, driven and unethical individual might easily be drawn to join the organizations that are to protect society. As they rise in status people like this look to bend or break the rules with others like themselves. With the technologies that will come available with A.I. and nanotech it will be more important then ever before to stop individuals like this.
Of course, with checks and balances and internal policing agencies the hope is that a would-be tyrant could be stopped before they got to a position of great power. The incredible technologies we discuss on this list such as A.I. and nanotech will make the pursuit of human rights even more challenging.