Re: Psychadelic (sp) and other Garbage on Extropians

Forrest Bishop (
Tue, 22 Jul 1997 17:28:03 -0500 (CDT)

In a message dated 7/22/97 8:39:53 AM, wrote:

>What I find really disturbing about this discussion is that we are
>having it at all. Half the people posting here are, quite frankly,
>about as critical in their thinking as trepanned chihuahuas. This is
>not the Extropians list of yore, where polymaths gathered to swap
>INFORMED discussion.

[[Nostagia??? Extropian?
Wasn't there a thread on S/N ratios a while back, with some proposals
for increasing it? Maybe it's time to implement some IT breakthrough
or other. I'm partial to a dynamic rating system, perhaps maintained at
the Extropy site. It might also help with the sludge factor if people
'see themselves as others see them'.]]

later, Curt Adams wrote:

I agree the drek content has gone way up. I think some of this comes
the Extropian commitment to dynamic "optimism".

[[Yes, this is one of the Extropian tenents I disagree with. Wishful
has to be clearly distinguished from critical thinking. This is not to
the notion of 'inventing the future'.]]

A positive attitude towards problems is handy; but it's very possible
to be
too enthusiastic about ideas or possibilities and ignore reality.

Anyway, I see the same with the trepanned chihuahuas here.

[[This item does not belong here at all. Perhaps a reposting of the
original guidelines
for the Extropy list is called for.]]

It's not just UFOs, though. There's no more evidence for diamondoid
than for UFOs. Drexler and some others have raised the possibility and
addressed some simple issues like building gears;

[[Um, here I have to chew on your leg a bit. Drexler's more restrained
position (as
opposed to the popularizations in "Engines of Creation") is a
plausibility arugument
for one type of nanotech, put forth mostly as a conceptual engineering
study. Building
his type of gears is actually one of the most difficult parts of the
argument, as they involve
a lot of energetically unfavorable bond strain. I don't know why
Foresight continues to
use one for its logo. "Globus Gears" made by more conventional
synthesis on carbon
nanotubes are looking very promising, maybe even just around the
There has been something of a sea change in the scientific
community's acceptance
of the feasibility of molecular nanotech, if not of machine-phase
chemistry, over the past
year. Even Eugene Leitl seems to be softening up. Richard Smalley may
have a cogent
argument against positional control of chemical reactions, but I don't
think he addresses
it from an engineering perspective- that is, simplifying and
restraining the system. There
are just too many ways to workaround the problems. I put much more
stock in Richard
Feynman's argument, he is after all the originator of our most perfect
physical theory.]]

UFOlogists have raised the
possibility and addressed some simple issues like sheilding.

[[An extraterrestrial starship approaching Earth would have a very large electromagnetic and
particle signature! Unless of course it is a nanoprobe.]]

While there
isn't much negative evidence against nanotech,

[[As in 'zero'.]]

I'd call myself a "dynamic realist". I really think that would be a
term for Extropians, at least as it was when I got into it. Perhaps
sort of name would ... encourage... us to at least wear hard helmets

[[Yes, I'd go along with that.

Forrest Bishop