[ExI] Watson on NOVA

spike spike66 at att.net
Thu Feb 17 03:00:11 UTC 2011

>... On Behalf Of Samantha Atkins

>> After seeing the amount of progress we have made in nanotechnology in the
quarter century since the K.Eric published Engines of Creation, I  have
concluded that replicating nanobots are a technology that is out of reach of
human capability.

>Not so.  Just a good three decades further out.  - samantha

Ja.  I just don't know when those three good decades will start.

I could be overly pessimistic.  Samantha, do you remember about the mid to
late 90s, when we were all going great guns on this, investments dollars
were flying every which direction, local nanotech miniconferences, the
K.Eric was going around giving lectures in the area, and even some
universities were starting up nanotech disciplines?  One could go to the
University of North Carolina and major in nanotechnology.  How cool is that!
I don't see that any of it gave us much of anything that was true nanotech.
The research produced some really excellent technologies, none of which were
true bottom up nanotech.  

In a way, I see that as similar to the debate we have had here the last few
days on Watson.  It isn't AI, any more than developing submicron scale
transistors is nanotechnology, but it has its own advantages.  Like the
university nanotech major, it attracts young talent, it pays the bills, it
definitely fires the imagination.  If anyone wanted to argue that these
represent indirect paths to nanotech and AGI, well, I wouldn't argue with


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