Technological Singularity

Peter da Silva peter at nmti.com
Sat Jun 6 17:15:22 EST 1998


In article <897046320.6598.0.nnrp-08.c2d9a433 at news.demon.co.uk>,
James Sharman <james at exaflop.demon.co.uk> wrote:
> The problem of nanotech run amok is a very interesting one.  You must
> remember that self replicating nanotechnology has exponential growth all the
> time  resources are available 

Stop there.

Where do these "grey goo" machines get the energy to replicate? That is in
itself a resource. How do they get rid of the heat generated? We already
have huge sectons of the earth subject to wild out-of-control chemical
reactions. They're called bushfires. Even at a high efficiency (just
releasing heat, not building complex chemical structures from mostly
inert elements) they require extremely favorable environments to spread
and release huge amounts of energy (energy that the replicators would
need to deal with, yet they're extremely susceptible to).

I envisage a nanotech assembly line involving a pipe the size of Hulk
Hogan's upper arm feeding high-energy chemicals into a reaction chamber,
with a firehose running cold water through to keep it from melting itself
down. It's going to take a long time to design artificial replicators
that are anywhere near as versatile as natural ones, and then they're
unlikely to be any more efficient.

How long did it take for the Green Goo to virtually wipe out anerobic
life on Earth?

-- 
In hoc signo hack, Peter da Silva <peter at baileynm.com>
  `-_-'      "As the complexity of chips approaches the complexity of software.
   'U`        The behavior of chips approaches the behavior of software."
				         -- John Ahlstrom <jahlstrom at cisco.com>



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