Showing posts with label molecular manufacturing. Show all posts
Showing posts with label molecular manufacturing. Show all posts


Sunday, April 11, 2010

This announcement below is from Foresight Institute.

Foresight Update 23.39: All conference videos now posted - April 9, 2010


Discuss these news stories at

We are happy to announce that all videos from Foresight 2010, our January conference, are now posted:

There are 17 videos, so in case you'd like some guidance in getting started, consider starting with the top three talks as rated by conference participants:

Special thanks to Monica Anderson, Miron Cuperman, and TechZulu (Efren Toscano) for their work on this project.

If you enjoy the videos and have not yet joined Foresight or donated in 2010, we encourage you to chip in and help fund this work:

We hope to see you at the next Foresight Conference!



Nano divide: some comments on Post MNT Economics

Sunday, July 29, 2007

An interesting post on CRN's blog:
" imagine a third world country somewhere in the year 2035, most home industries wiped into oblivion by nanotech minifacs, traditional agriculture wiped into oblivion by cheap biogenetics and superefficient nanotech based agriculture - those people would be without any product in demand, locked away from resources and raw materials, largely incapable of coping because of traditionalist lifestyles..."
Makes me wonder. How long will it take since the first day nanofac is invented to ubiquitous mass production? Will it be enough to buy time. If a moratorium is allowed, international trade can continue for a while to fill the gap on the transitionary phase.

But even with the moratorium, I would expect a rush, capital and financial market fells followed by lay offs triggered by manufacturing companies spreading to other industries. This disruption may cause extreme economic crisis. But I am not an economist. Any ideas on how to prevent it?

ps: blog hiatus until August 11th. I am on vacation.

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Essential facilities doctrine and molecular manufacturing

Friday, March 2, 2007

This is just a quick, general and preliminary comment on the development of the doctrine of essential facilities. After reading some papers (some of them also available in the ssrn here), I have a feeling that both IP and Competition Lawyers are in favour of a more restrictive application of the "essential facilities" doctrine to intellectual property.

Essential facilities has been heaviliy criticized. Some lawyers considered that when there is a competition case involving IP, a new approach must be created as essential facilities deal primarily with tangible property.

My impression is, however, that these "new approaches" attempts to put a more strict treshold when competition law inetervenes intellectual property. I wonder if in the future, when molecular manufacturing is available -- a stricter approach would still be relevant. In my opinion, when more and more tangible goods are transformable into information, there will be more demand towards lowering the standards of IP protection.

It would be interesting to see how competition law doctrines operates in the age of molecular manufacturing. The tendency towards differentiating between competition law test applicable to tangible property and competition law test applicable to intangible property is something positive. However, the trends that everything is transformable into information these days must also be put into consideration. Raising the threshold of IP protection in a world where tangible goods are nothing but information may seriously jeoperdize the future economy.

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Nanofactory licensing

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Michael Anissimov wrote a very cool piece on nanofactory regulation:
A primary concern for the development of civilian and commercial nanofactories is the buildup of NanoTrash - cheaply mass-manufactured products made of mostly diamond and empty space. Avoiding NanoTrash while preserving our freedom to design and create will be a great challenge of the early nanotech era. For starters, each nanofactory user should have a personal matter and energy budget determined by a safety authority. These limits should be variable based on product class and user profession. For example, someone that works at a hospital should have a larger energy budget when it comes to manufacturing medical products. In the same way that it’s illegal for just anyone to randomly practice medicine, not just anyone should be permitted to manufacture large quantities of painkillers, syringes, or scalpels.
The idea is to limit and allocate matter and energy budget per person. I guess this means that it operates more like a "license" than a "right". Note that when we talk about right, then the general rule is 'you are allowed to do anything unless it is prohibited'. But when we talk about license, the general rule is 'you are prohibited to do anything unless it is allowed'. For example a driving license: you may not drive unless you have a license.

Who has the power to allows and restricts? Of course, it's the authorities job. The general system in today's licensing-cycle may then be applied: granting of licenses, monitoring of licenses, warning, suspension of license, and finally, revocation of license. Also, this means that we need to consider the types of the licenses. Individual license? Corporate license? Are the licenses transferrable (Can I give my quotas to third parties)? Can parties aggregate their quotas? etc.

Regulating matter may be relatively easier than regulating energy intake. Authorities can regulate matter at the upstream level if they are presented as blocks. But regulating energy may not be that easy. As I have noted in my previous post, even the present day nanotechnology will make it possible for lay people to generate energy. Thus, the general rule in current energy law is: you can consume as much as energy it takes as long as you can either generate it or pay for it. It would be interesting to see that the rule is reversed. Energy is not scarce but they need to be allocated for security reasons. I guess -- for environmental reason -- energy consumption must be limited anyway.

I've been imagining that the licensing will come in the same bundle with the purchase of nanofactory. This licensing discussion is a good start to prepare proto-regulation for future nanotechnology. Another important step would be in designing the authority.