[ExI] Second Law of Thermodynamics
extropy at unreasonable.com
Fri Dec 14 21:59:18 UTC 2007
>I see your point, but one must also remember that gold is only
>valuable in t he first place because it is rare. Once you have
>converted all the lead into gold, what value does it really have?
Gold is not only valuable because it is rare. Gold has physical
properties that make it an excellent solution for certain engineering
problems. Were gold more plentiful, it would, for instance, supplant
copper, silver, and aluminum in many contexts where conductivity is desired.
For that matter, lead is useful in of itself. If all the lead were
converted to gold, we'd be looking for clever ways to accelerate the
decay of radioactive waste into lead, to address our lead shortage.
Pulling back a bit to an extropian worldview, it's important in one's
life and in building the future to glean the durability of your premises.
For example, some real estate commands a premium price because people
need to travel to work and need someplace nearby to live. Dramatic
improvements in transportation or communications can rip away that
Other location premiums are longer lasting. Carmel will remain
beautiful, Jerusalem will remain sacred, and Key West will remain
quirky for decades longer, if not indefinitely. Although, of course,
we here can envision an assortment of futures that would undercut them as well.
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