November 19, 2003

Why It Matters

Let me offer an explanation as to why I'm so excited by the preceding announcement. Better yet, I'll let Ralph Merkle explain, by way of his review of Nanomedecine volume IIA, currently running on

To end with a question: do you expect to be alive in thirty years? If so—and most people do—then the development of nanomedicine within that time frame will benefit you directly. The medical nanorobots we are talking about could save your life, the lives of your loved ones and the lives of your friends. This is possible and even likely, but not inevitable. How long it takes to develop this life saving technology depends on what we do—it is not happening according to some cosmic plan, with a date engraved in stone that neither you nor I can change—but rather it will take as long as we let it take. Yes, thirty years is a long time. Yes, most people have a hard time thinking about the next year, let alone the next decade, let alone a few decades hence. But if we don't act today, then we might one day wake up in a future where we are old and infirm and the promise of nanomedicine is still just that: a promise. To paraphrase a famous slogan: think long term, act short term.

That's why I'm excited. The senate has approved a short-term action that might just be the beginning of a much longer term for all of us.

Posted by Phil at November 19, 2003 09:58 AM | TrackBack
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