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« Molecular Manufacturing vs. Self-Assembly | Main | Blog Comment Spam and Turing tests »

February 20, 2010


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The intellectual property kerfuffle, as you put it, has me profoundly worried about what we'll do with nanofactories if and when they appear. Faced with digital abundance, the powers that be have mandated scarcity to protect the interests of the few over the many. I have the sinking feeling they'll impose the same restrictions on physical plenty.

Chris Phoenix, CRN

The "powers that be" are not unitary. They're a bunch of different special interests interacting within the framework of government. The farm lobby could not care less whether Napster is legal.

And different interests with different models of how to make money may get in each other's way.

And different IP regimes and pricing structures in different countries will "leak" to some extent, unless government in a given country becomes oppressive on the scale of North Korea.

So I expect nanofactory-based abundance to have at least some impact in most countries. How much, and how quickly, and what opportunities are lost, are questions that aren't easy to predict the answers to.

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