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Author of the Mind Sleuth Series © 2015 Bruce M. Perrin


Friday, May 5, 2017

Will Nanobots Make Me Funnier?

A couple of months ago, I was reading predictions from the noted Google futurist, Ray Kurzweil.  Among them was the prediction that nanobots would make people funnier.  No, they’re not going to help you channel George Carlin or Richard Pryor.  They’re going to connect you to the Internet.

That notion, to me anyway, is both awe inspiring and terrifying.  Wouldn’t it be great to have the vast information reserves of the cloud at your mental fingertips?  But wouldn’t it be horrific if that information feed fell into the wrong hands?
There are, of course, major hurdles in establishing a brain-to-cloud interface.  One is knowing just where to insert these nanobots into the brain so that their signals will be meaningful.  Or maybe precise location is not required and what is inserted is a mesh, much like the ‘neural lace’ being proposed by Elon Musk’s new company, Neuralink.  And of course, the brain will be helping in this endeavor, making changes in its structure to accommodate these new inputs – a capability known as plasticity.

When might we expect this revolution?  A special edition of the NY Times, Science Times crowd-sourced that question (http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2011/12/06/science/20111206-technology-timeline.html).  And after 1537 moves (when I visited on May 2, 2017), the readers settled on 2034 as the date when “Enhanced intelligence will be available to most people through a combination of nanotechnology and embedded processors.”

I’d like to see that.  But in the meantime, I can simulate nanobots making me funnier with a manual search of the Internet.  Here was what I found.

Question:  Why was the nanobot bankrupt?
Answer:  Because it had used all its cache.

I consider this proof positive.  Nanobots won’t make me funnier, at least until there’s better material in the cloud.

Image from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3471287/ [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons.

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