Re: >Techno-Optimism v Pessimism

From: Robert Bradbury (
Date: Tue Jan 18 2000 - 09:27:00 MST

On Mon, 17 Jan 2000, Robert Owen wrote:

> wrote:
> > I have watched these posts over the months and have often wondered, from a
> > futurist point of view; why is everyone so techno-optimistic?

Well, some of us aren't completely "optimistic". I'm very optimistic
that technology is going to produce a really cool vehicle to drive.
I'm not so optimistic that the vehicle "Driver's Manual" and "Repair
documentation" will be published at the time that everyone gets handed
a set of keys.

> >
> > What I wonder about, is why most people here believe that all this can and
> > will be achieved by 2050 or 2099 at the absolute latest? Things like
> > massive-scale nano-production, solar power based on nano, human
> > consciousness that gets absorbed into a vastly, powerful computer system.
> > Why in Century 21, rather then century 26?

Because the trends are very very clear. I've got a number of spreadsheets
with very pretty graphs on how the trends go. I have to put them all on
log scales becauce the numbers get so big (in the next 100 years). Until
we hit the limits of matter scales and energy and matter easily available,
we are going to be moving increasingly faster.

> On the other hand, take your best-case scenario: any corporation whose
> research and development department presented the board with a fifty-
> year plan would be repudiated by Wall Street, and the systems analyst
> responsible would be hospitalized.

Maybe not, some of us end up relocated to Russia....


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