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On Saturday and Sunday, January 20 and 21, members of the CRN Global Task Force participated in a first-of-its-kind event. About a dozen people, representing four countries on three continents, and with training in a variety of disciplines, came together for a nanotechnology scenario creation project via virtual presence. They began the process of developing a series of professional-quality models of a world in which exponential general-purpose molecular manufacturing has become a reality.
The purpose of this scenario creation activity is to offer plausible, logical, understandable "stories" about near-future worlds (circa 2020) in which we might actually live, and in which we must contend with the possibly severe military, political, economic, social, medical, environmental, and ethical implications of molecular manufacturing.
What will that future look like? What can we learn from picturing it now that might help us to avoid the worst pitfalls and generate the greatest benefits?
It will take some time for the stories that we are generating to be written. The process that began last weekend will continue in February and will be repeated over the next several months until we have a broad and strong collection of scenarios that are ready to be published. We'll keep you informed about our progress.
Jamais Cascio, who did an amazing job of conducting the workshop for us, also did an amazing job of recounting the experience on his Open the Future blog. Last October, we appointed Jamais as a Global Futures Strategist for CRN. He is becoming an increasingly important and valuable member of CRN's team.
Thanks to all who participated!
The Center for Responsible Nanotechnology is a non-profit research and advocacy think tank concerned with the major societal and environmental implications of advanced nanotechnology. We are a modern, networked, virtual organization -- with no "brick and mortar" -- a collection of more than 100 volunteers, over 1000 interested followers, and a small team of primary coordinators.
CRN engages individuals and groups to better understand the implications of molecular manufacturing and to focus on the real risks and benefits of the technology. Our goal is the creation and implementation of wise, comprehensive, and balanced plans for responsible worldwide use of this transformative technology.
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