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Download A dangerous master : how to keep technology from slipping by Wendell Wallach PDF

By Wendell Wallach

We are living in an age of amazing technological capability. From nanotechnology to man made organisms, new applied sciences stand to revolutionize entire domain names of human event. yet with outstanding strength comes amazing danger: drones can carry a bomb as without difficulty as they could a brand new phone; makers and hackers can 3D-print weapons in addition to instruments; and supercomputers can short-circuit Wall road simply as simply as they can Read more...

summary: we are living in an age of outstanding technological capability. From nanotechnology to artificial organisms, new applied sciences stand to revolutionize entire domain names of human event. yet with remarkable power comes notable danger: drones can convey a bomb as conveniently as they could a brand new phone; makers and hackers can 3D-print weapons in addition to instruments; and supercomputers can short-circuit Wall highway simply as simply as they could deal with your portfolio.One factor those applied sciences cannot do is resolution the profound ethical concerns they elevate. Who can be held responsible after they get it wrong? What accountability do

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By a unanimous decision, the Justices of the Supreme Court ruled against Myriad and declared that isolated human genes could not be patented. Sanity prevailed. Future harms, from overcharging for gene therapies to limitations on who could perform research, were averted. The pace of genomic research was paradoxically slowed and accelerated by the decision. Private companies would find it more difficult to recoup their investment, while independent researchers were freed to study individual genes without going through companies that had patented the genes.

But I find it totally unsatisfactory when scientists and courts that simply defer to their judgments are the only parties involved in making decisions that affect us all. Nonetheless, in the case of the LHC, the determination of the scientific experts holds more weight than it should in other fields of study. Physics is an essentially lawful science in which it is possible to make a mathematical determination of an experiment’s safety, presuming, of course, that we adequately understand the laws governing the physical system being studied.

Busy responding to the latest crisis and struggling to advance one or two priorities, elected officials postpone attending to secondary concerns or ignore them altogether. The unfolding technological landscape is confusing—a modern version of the Wild West, in which prospector engineers discover gold in the form of a new software application or approach to social networking. Once the prospector becomes a baron, he joins the ranks of business leaders protective of their economic niche and scornful of regulations that interfere with their profits, freedoms, and privileges.

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