I agree with Joe Dees about the pace and nature of change

john grigg (starman125@hotmail.com)
Mon, 18 Oct 1999 11:07:39 PDT

Hello everyone,

Joe Dees wrote:
In 50 years, we'll both probably be alive and old, but reasonably healthy. I have $100 in 1999 US currency that says on October 15, 2049, US currency will still be in common use, most humans will be born the old fashioned way, live on Earth, and be speaking English or Hindi with their neighbors, and going to work to earn more of that US currency to spend on the wonderful high-tech gadgets that 50 years of slow, steady progress has created. (Fortunately, I can't lose this bet because if I'm wrong, I won't be around
topay off:). (end of post reproduction)

I agree with Joe. The transformation of our society due to biotech, nanotech, A.I. and other key technologies in my view may not result in over-night world-shaking changes. I see a slower, incremental approach. Of course much of how things develop will be determined by how society and government view these technologies. They may be embraced very carefully if seen as potential nightmares. The developed world tends to be one of regulators intent on keeping power and knowledge under control at least where profit is not concerned.
Of course I could be totally wrong and these technologies could have a "life of their own" when combined with human corporate and government desires involving power, greed and mistrust. In my "history of war" class we have studied how european nations competing with each other so much and for so long was a key factor in this geographically small area coming to dominate the world.

I sadly think the world of 2050 may have an even worse problem of the haves and the have-nots. I hope this is not so. And in this world the rich would have advantages over the poor and middle-class unimaginable in our time which could lead to greater social strife.

In 2050 I will be eighty-two years old if I am still around! My family tree members tend to konk out around seventy but that is usually despite abusing their bodies with too much drink and lack of exercise. I just might be willing to bet $100 against Eleizer on this one! He will be a young man of just seventy when 2050 comes around! He might have to wait till I come out of cryonic suspension to collect his $100 dollars!

In response to Joseph1(the NeoSapien) in regards to a human breeding project to raise the quality of the human gene pool I must agree with others that I don't see it as necessary. Already nature has given humans quite a criteria for mate selection that has served us well. Intelligence is a key factor for mate selection already though other factors include physical symmetry, ambition, status and cultural background. We got to this level of cultural and technological development due to in large part these mechanisms. Gotta impress those females any way we can! The desire for sex and companionship is a huge motivator for our kind.

Within a few decades genetic engineering will make this discussion immaterial. We will be on the next level. At least those who can afford it will be. Animosity toward the wealthy will grow as their offspring are gauranteed superior intellect, health and good looks via a rich parents bank account. We will need a major government program to make this genegineering available to all parents even though they would most likely not get the same level of "uplift" as the wealthy.


John Grigg

Get Your Private, Free Email at http://www.hotmail.com