Re: Goo prophylaxis:consensus

Anders Sandberg (
03 Sep 1997 16:05:26 +0200

"Nicholas Bostrom" <> writes:

> Our discussion about the strategic situation after and during the
> development of nanotechnology has gone on for a while, and there is
> still disagreement on several issus. But perhaps we reached a near
> consensus on the following non-trivial points?

I think you are right about argument one, but I disagree with

> 2. An immune system wouldn't work unless it was global.
> 3. In the absence of a global immune system, if everybody could make
> their own nanotech machines then all life on earth would soon become
> extinct.

I have not yet had the time to read through the debate about how
much more (or less) efficient nanites would be compared to blife
in a terrestrial environment, but so far I have not yet seen any
evidence that nanomachines that are not designed as biosphere-wipers
would out-compete blife.

I would also like to point out that if there are local immune
systems, then they would protect everything in them but not
the biosphere outside, so we might end up with "islands" or "nations"
of different immune systems.

I plan to spend a while this weekend reviewing the discussion and
trying to untangle the various assumptions people have, and separate
fact (and logical conclusions from fact) from speculation. I think
this kind of consensus-description is a good idea, although I
have the feeling that Nicholas has biased it a bit in his direction
rather than the consensus perceived by (say) me. Darn belief bias.

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