From: Anders Sandberg (
Date: Tue Feb 19 2002 - 08:17:10 MST

On Mon, Feb 18, 2002 at 11:08:24PM -0800, Samantha Atkins wrote:
> Your proposal is not a "solution" as all the possibilities of
> disaster go with you. Solve the problem here or elsewhere, it
> is still the same problem. Running off to build space colonies
> will simply distract from actually facing the problem.

Actually, it is a good complement. Not having all the eggs in the same
basket is always a good strategy against threats. And the effort to
build a space colony does not compete strongly with developing better
nano, biotech or AI - in fact, it would likely be a great deal of
synergy between the areas. If I run away to build space colonies and
you build nanodefenses, in the end we have two qualitatively different
ways of avoiding total wipeout - far more likely to protect than a
single, slightly more elaborate solution.

The problem is of course how to get such a project (literally) off the
ground. Space industry has so far not proven particularly competitive,
space tourism *might* be slightly profitable and a possible bootstrap
method. But right now you cannot readily sell places on a disaster
refuge, the demand simply isn't there. From my own scenario planning /
roleplaying experiments it seems that once you get enough people
worried about imminent disaster (even a highly predictable one), it is
nearly too late to set up a decent space habitat.

I think I will be in the nanodefense business myself.

Anders Sandberg                                      Towards Ascension!                  
GCS/M/S/O d++ -p+ c++++ !l u+ e++ m++ s+/+ n--- h+/* f+ g+ w++ t+ r+ !y

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