What's all this timewasting chatter about using nanotechnology and/or genetic engineering to build supercomputers, tiny intelligent robots, or other nerdy toys? Get unreal! Think about something Rumpelstiltskin-magic-like to weave straw into gold --- or more plausibly, turn cheap cloth into fancier material. Talk about mini-pseudo-silkworms that eat rayon/polyester and spin it out as the same pattern of fine fiber. But hey, as long as we're ignoring all the (quite serious) problems of physics and information theory, why not go a step farther and postulate sub-nuclear-sized micromanipulators? Rearrange protons and neutrons to turn lead into platinum, alchemist-fashion. (But beware of the runaway sorcerer's apprentice effect.)

Sounds silly --- but is it any more silly than today's breathless fantasy essays on the wonders of nanotech/biotech? Will those writings seem as unreal, a few centuries from now, as fairy tales and medieval pseudoscience of past centuries seem to us now? (See ^zhurnal 5 October 1999, TinyTrainsAndVenetianGlass)

Tuesday, May 15, 2001 at 18:36:45 (EDT) = 2001-05-15


(correlates: CosmicChaos, AirFlow, PulpIt, ...)