Nanotech Database

Article Title:
Plenty of Doom and Gloom at the Bottom?

Toumey, Chris

Journal Information:
Nature Nanotechnology
Vol. 4, Num. 7


Toumey here writes about the relationship between humans and technology and the potential for it to go wrong in terrifying ways. The debate here centers on technophobes and technophiles, though the author sees a third perspective, the cyborg theory, whereby humans and technology are largely inseparable and dependent upon one another for survival. In the way that technophobes and technophiles establish an arbitrary boundary between themselves, the part-human, part-machine cyborg challenges that dichotomy and suggests that a fusion of the two categories is not just possible but maybe preferred. He sees this as related to nanotechnology in that nanobots created for certain purposes could, as Bill Joy suggests, become a new species that replaces humans atop the evolutionary chain, but it is more likely that nanotechnology will live a cyborg existence where people use the technology for their own benefit while understanding it can be used for their detriment, too.