Foresight Update 23.28: Protocols proposed to control medical nanorobots - July 9, 2009
Discuss these news stories at http://foresight.org/nanodot.
Robert A. Freitas Jr., author of the Nanomedicine series of books, has just published a major new theory paper on aspects of medical nanorobot control, providing an early glimpse of future discussions of this topic that are planned to appear in Chapter 12 (Nanorobot Control) of Nanomedicine, Vol. IIB: Systems and Operations, the third volume of the series (still in preparation)…
There's a paper on roboethics by Yueh-Hsuan Weng of Taiwan's Conscription Agency in the International Journal of Social Robotics that has gotten a write-up on Physorg (h/t to Accelerating Future)…
Eric Drexler is apparently at the Renaissance Weekend with the intent to speak to the assembled interesting people about how "advanced nanotechnology can address the climate change problem providing low-cost solar energy and by removing accumulated CO2 from the atmosphere." In the same spirit, for the rest of us, here's how I think we should go about using advanced nanotechnology to address the problem of climate change…
We have the devices. What we do not have is simply the infrastructure that macroscopic technology takes for granted: the ability to sort and test parts; to cut and join materials; to create frameworks that can hold devices in designed relationships, and the ability to place parts into such frameworks. (Drexler sometimes refers to this as the "circuit-board problem.")
And yet we should have. In 1959 Richard Feynman, in his seminal talk Plenty of Room at the Bottom, described a straight-forward, immediately actionable plan which would have resulted in exactly such an infrastructure well before 2000 if it had been followed…
It's appropriate on this July 7 to make at least a reference to the history of ideas that lies behind the Feynman Path. That's because July 7 is the (102nd) birthday of Robert A Heinlein, the famous SF writer, futurist, and inventor. His invention of interest is the "Waldo F. Jones Synchronous Reduplicating Pantograph" from the story Waldo. Heinlein is recognized as the conceptual inventor of the telemanipulator, often called a Waldo for that reason, but it is not as widely remembered that the original Waldoes in the story were (a) self-replicating ("Reduplicating") and (b) scale-shifting ("Pantograph")…
—Nanodot posts by J. Storrs Hall
July 30, 2009
August 20-22, 2009
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