"Imagine having your body and bones woven with invisible diamond fabric."
June 13, 2000 10:35 AM   Subscribe

"Imagine having your body and bones woven with invisible diamond fabric." Sound like something Ron Popiel would say after spray painting a bald man's head? No. It's Nanotechnology. Also of interest is this idea of Ufog. Will it be a boon to all mankind or just to fat sexually frustrated nerds?
posted by Nyarlathotep (9 comments total)
Remember how The Future was portrayed back in the 50s? Flying cars, jetpacks, social harmony?
Imagine a child growing up disease free. NO more ugly immune shots! NO more AIDS! NO more flu! NO more you name it!
Simple calculations show, a properly engineered body reinforcement net (bio-diamond composite?), woven with nanites smaller than a human cell could increase tolerance to "G" forces to the point, one could fall out of a building and walk away (do try to land on your feet).
It's all so simple! You just have these little molecular machines! None of that messy "chemistry" stuff.
Will it be a boon to all mankind? Well, definitely science-fiction writers...
posted by lbergstr at 1:14 PM on June 13, 2000

Thank goodness we've finally found a solution to that horrible problem plaguing society-people falling out of buildings.

I thought we'd solved this problem with windows?
posted by Doug at 1:29 PM on June 13, 2000

Well, we all know how good windows work, too, don't we?

As cool as it would be to welcome the glorious future! Right into our lives! In only 10-15 years!, I'd be more inclined to get caught up in their hubris if they didn't sound so, well, crackpotty.

Possible, though? Sure. No one wants to be the great naysayer and have history laugh at them, dothey?

posted by chicobangs at 1:40 PM on June 13, 2000

a properly engineered body reinforcement net (bio-diamond composite?), woven with nanites smaller than a human cell could increase tolerance to "G" forces to the point, one could fall out of a building and walk away (do try to land on your feet).

Kinda like Wolverine? Awesome!
posted by daveadams at 2:06 PM on June 13, 2000

::...just to fat sexually frustrated nerds?

Looks like Ufog won't do much against knee-jerk hatred of the overweight.

posted by aaron at 2:08 PM on June 13, 2000

Von Neumann machines are often used as that 'sufficently advanced technology' Clarke's Law mentions. Right now, Drexlertech and VNM's are, quite honestly, more fantasy than reality. I'd expect to see something more on the biotech front first...because nature already knows how to make microscopic machines.

They're called Viruses. Retroviruses, properly modified, may one day be used to modify people's DNA in order to create better offspring, or even to reactivate the process of cellular mitosis that we have as growing children, basically restarting the human biological clock. Even now, some enzymes have been found with similar effects, and while the process is crude now, with retroviral help it could easily be refined. (I'm not saying I want us to refine it, just that we could. Personally, I don't mind getting older. It seems okay by me.)

So in this race, my money's on the organic tech.
posted by Ezrael at 2:20 PM on June 13, 2000

On the contrary, Aaron. Nanite technology will do so much for human beings, that we will be forced to like fat people cuz we'll ALL be fat.

Wanna walk to the other side of the room? Why? Just push a remote control button and the nanites will carry you from one room to the other, or carry you out to your car.

Feel like exercise? I don't know why you would, but just program the nanite clothing you're wearing to move your limbs around for you. Just relax and let the nanites jog you around the room for you, a built-in exoskeleton.

It will become a chore to have to get up out of the nanite house seat and into the nanite car seat. But why do that? Why can't the house just convert itself into a car so you never have to actually move your body the rest of your life? Just the remote control button?

Of course someone will eventually create nanites that happen to eat cellulose and fatty tissues. You just inject them into your body and then you can eat all you want. The nanites'll keep you anorexic!

A world filled with Ally McBeal! Paradise for some. A nightmare for the rest of us.

Let the nanites rebuild the muscle tissue that atrophies as you spend years playing videogames and surfing the web completely immobile. Of course, why worry about a little atrophy when you'll never have to lift a finger for the rest of your life?

Your body starts failing? Swallow a few million nanites and they'll rebuild your heart and lungs for you. Skin starting to fall off? Bedsores? Decaying limbs? Ufog-it!

Tired of thinking? Going braindead? Gee! They'll take care of that for ya too! We'll never have to die! wow won't that be fun?

We won't be doing anything but at least we can say we're waiting around for eternity to catch up with us.

I think I'm going to be sick.
posted by ZachsMind at 4:03 PM on June 13, 2000

Hey, Zach, think about this: when we truly do perfect cell-sized robots that can do all the work of human cells and more, what's to stop us from replacing the entirety of our bodies, including our brains, with them? If each nanite can replicate all neuron function, it'll be like being eaten by a planarian worm...the nanite colony will think like you would have, look like you did, but it will never grow old, never die, and will be able to survive the kind of injuries that would turn a human into paste.

Is that not the scariest goddamn image or what?
posted by Ezrael at 7:55 PM on June 13, 2000

There was an old (like ten years, which in this thread seems like before the great flood) book called Great Mambo Chicken and the Transhuman Condition, by Ed Regis, which covered much of this in great detail.

With nanotechnology, it'll only be a matter of time before our brains can be stored offsite, as it were, an entire lifetime's experiences on one disc. This could be copied and saved in many different locations, and each of these copies could be put temporarily into whatever host body was handy in order to actually do temporal and corporal things.

And then all these experiences could be shared by everyone, everywhere, forever.

I have to admit, it's kind of neat in theory. But then again, I'm not tired of living yet.
posted by chicobangs at 10:20 PM on June 13, 2000

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