Re: Pointless Re: Eugene's nuclear threat

From: Eliezer S. Yudkowsky (
Date: Wed Oct 04 2000 - 19:52:46 MDT

Eugene Leitl wrote:
> Eliezer S. Yudkowsky writes:
> > Did you just utter the sentence "I'm not to be held responsible if that
> > hardware is to be put to wrong use by irresponsible people"?
> Oh, my. He has entrapped me, your Honour.
> Seriously, you know recombinant DNA technology? Very useful for all
> kind of things: pharmaceuticals, diagnostics, agriculture, nowadays
> even gerontology. Even more goodies in the future. Alas, also handy
> for badass bioweapons. Same technology, different use. Some good, some
> bad. One is saving a sick little girl from leukemia, other is giving
> her a roaring case of Ebola. Quite different, don't you agree?

Sure, and the inventors of recombinant DNA technology are responsible for
both. Going ahead with the Ebola-synthesizer to save a little girl from
leukemia has a long and honorable tradition within technology, one that always
ends in praise for the inventors, which is why we keep on doing it. My point
is that yes, you are responsible for the bad as well as the good - it's just
that, historically, the good almost always does turn out to outweigh the bad,
which is why we go ahead with technology.

As opposed to, say, politics.

-- -- -- -- --
Eliezer S. Yudkowsky
Research Fellow, Singularity Institute for Artificial Intelligence

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Mon May 28 2001 - 09:50:15 MDT