[ExI] trying to convince a friend that nanotech is not so bad...

Mike Dougherty msd001 at gmail.com
Fri Jul 30 02:14:03 UTC 2010

On Thu, Jul 29, 2010 at 5:39 PM, John Grigg <possiblepaths2050 at gmail.com> wrote:
> A friend wrote to me:
> Uh hey, yeah, guess what they put nano tech aluminum in your deodorant
> and suntan lotion and oooh its clear - that's so neat!! ooh and dries
> fast but whoops u have cancer because it breaks the brain skin blood
> barrier!!
> oh also now children can get nano carbon bicycle handles and their
> hands rub up against it, and it too breaks the skin brain blood
> barrier, and whoops my kid needs chemo and a blood transfusion!
> How about leave it perfect the way nature intended it! I am open to
> non- misappropriate uses of nano but most of what i have ever seen is
> being used as a weapon against ppl across the board. we already have
> reverse engineered space technology, most of nanotech is being used to
> fuck people in my humble opinion.
> My question to the list members is this, how do you deal with these
> complaints against the *current state* of nanotechnology?  And will
> these problems get worse or better, as time goes by?

While waiting for a seat to get a haircut, I listened to a
conversation between a room full of stylists discussing a broken water
fountain.  One lady offered to bring in a case of bottled water that
she had purchased earlier that day which was still in her car.
Another of the group advised her that if the car was sitting in the
sun that the water was ruined because the "chemicals" in the plastic
bottles would get into the water and then drinking the water would
"cause cancer."

I imagined that this one woman really believed that a single (20 oz?)
bottle of water was so poisonous that drinking it would immediately
give her cancer.  I also imagined that this same woman would, on her
lunch break, go out of her way to secure a fast-food lunch complete
with soda.  So I wonder how much more toxic is a bottle of water left
in a car during the day compared to the typical American diet.  Within
5 minutes the alpha of the group had all others convinced that the
woman who offered to share her bottled water was effectively a
half-wit who ignorantly almost killed everyone.

I would remind your friend of the good old days before
antimicrobial/antibacterial nanotech (silver nano).  Consider the
effectiveness of sunscreens using titanium oxide.  Think of the
increased efficiency of nanoparticle strengthened steel for car
frames.  Without nanoparticle coatings, you can go back to a time
before lcd touch screens or solar panels.  Go back to uncoated
porcelain so scrubbing a toilet was a mechanical labor and not the
promise of a wonder-product.

The way nature intended?  Such as the aerosol particles like coal dust
and metallic filings?  How about we go back to lining buildings with
asbestos for fire protection?  The good old days sucked.  I want more
nanotech and I want it to be cheaper.  I'll risk having a slightly
more dangerous manufacturing facility staffed with robots if it means
goods that are inherently wear resistant or weather proof.  I'll risk
having a carbon-fiber rod break while assembling a tent if it means I
can carry 8 kilograms less weight while backpacking (which would
likely mean I was doing something incredibly stupid to break a
carbon-fiber tent pole since they're effectively indestructible)  Most
likely any cut I might incur during my hike is answered immediately
with an antiseptic spray-on skin sealant.  In a real emergency, I
could tap a few times on the touch-screen phone and follow gps
directions or call someone to retrieve me.  Nature may intend survival
of the fittest;  humans excel at building and using tools (including
nano technology) to ensure continued fitness.

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