OK, so we are going to call our replicators “3D Printers”. And we know that we are going to have to wait 20 years before we can finally print off a basic, working cell phone. But that’s just details: all the basics have been ironed out, and the rest can be left to variations of Moore’s Law.
(Don’t you just LOVE exponential change? I know I do!)
Now, Peter Diamandis has provided us with a peek in the future with his book, Abundance. He has kindly provided an interview here for Which Way Next:
The part that interested me most what the use of an iPad as a tricorder. What would the bureaucrats at the FDA think? Already, the medical establishment is standing against AI, as it would put their very expensive educations to waste, and themselves out of a job. (Huge benefits to the patients are, naturally, utterly beside the point to these old and long-established cartels.)
Of course, the FDA can decide to freeze America in the past, protecting the vested interests of the medical establishment and leaving further innovation in the grateful hands of China and India – and Brazil, Turkey, Russia, even Japan and Mexico.
(Poor Africans and Latin Americans, unable to pay the cartel prices of licensed American medical expertize and drug creation, will quickly discover who their true friends are…)
I am confident that the FDA will also outlaw ultra-cheap “3D printing” of medicine – gotta give those government-connected pharmaceutical and Drug War lobbyists the limitless wealth and grasping powers they expect. So, the future of medicine will shift nicely to China, India, and probably the Middle East.
(I’m also looking for powerful technological breakthroughs in drug production from mysterious sources in Latin America as well. Yes, I’m looking at you, Mexico.)
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In MegaTraveller, the TL 12 Medical Pocket Scanner (Imperial Encyclopedia, page 61-62) costs about 10,500 Imperial Credits (A lot more, if you convert it to 2012 US dollars. Pegging the 2012 US at TL 8 –
no to laser rifles, no particle accelerators, yes to video phones, yes to orbital settlements (a tiny one), no limb regeneration, no triphibian vehicles (never mind ‘early grav vehicles’), no jump1 (*deep, burning anger*), yes to superconductors (Referees’ Companion, page 28-29) –
and converting as per TNE page 230, it will cost $19,833/19,833 ‘TL 8 credits’ (I’m going to totally ignore the ‘conversion equation’ on MegaT’s Referee’s Manual page 53.)
New iPads cost about $380, as of April 2012.
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Five minutes after originally posting this, I re-discovered North’s article on the joys of health travel in an age of FDA obsolescence: Health and Free Trade, found on LewRockwell.