Re: Genetic transition to posthumanism

From: Robert J. Bradbury (
Date: Fri May 18 2001 - 13:11:14 MDT (the nano-AI-skeptic) wrote:

> We do need mpsrn for the nanoSanta which will solve all our problems.
> Nifty new computers would be nifty new computers but they won't
> build houses for everybody on earth.

Unfortunately Curt, you are simply wrong. (Ooopppps... I think
I hear the politeness police knocking at my door....).

We do *not* need machine-phase self-replication (by which I'm
assuming you mean classical diamondoid self-replicating nanobots)
in order to solve "all our problems". As pointed out by Damien
in the Spike (quoting me from the EI archives and/or a personal
communication) you have to carefully differentiate between
"self-replication", "self-assembly", "molecular assembly"
*and* mechano-synthetic, non-solution phase assembly of materials
stronger than those that can be produced by available methods.

The first three (SR, SA & MA) are all properties of normal
biological organisms. And because you can get the SR times
of these down to ~20 minutes (at least), you can solve
"all our problems" because the mass doubling time of organisms
we can design is much faster than the mass doubling time of our

And I'm fairly sure we can design them to build a house, at
least there is a description of what that would look like in
my current business plan. Mind you it might take a couple
of years to grow the house using only local energy sources
but it does seem feasible.

I'm willing to make $100 bets with people that the
manufacturing cost of designer bacteria with 1 million+
base genomes will be under $10.00 by 2010. I suppose this
is something we should move over to the idea futures site
so I can make a killing on it...


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