1. “Nanotechnology is an idea that most people simply didn’t believe.”
— Ralph Merkle
2. “If we can reduce the cost and improve the quality of medical technology through advances in nanotechnology, we can more widely address the medical conditions that are prevalent and reduce the level of human suffering.”
3. “Disease and ill health are caused largely by damage at the molecular and cellular level, yet todays surgical tools are too large to deal with that kind of problem.”
4. “Nanotechnology will let us build computers that are incredibly powerful. We’ll have more power in the volume of a sugar cube than exists in the entire world today.”
5. “The new technologies that we see coming will have major benefits that will greatly alleviate human suffering.”
6. “As in any technological revolution, there will be winners and losers. On balance, everyone will come out ahead, although there will be particular companies that will not be able to cope with a new environment.”
7. “If you look at the various strategies available for dealing with a new technology, sticking your head in the sand is not the most plausible strategy.”
8. “If you look at the human condition today, not everyone is well fed, has access to good medical care, or the physical basics that provide for a healthy and a happy life.”
9. “Manufacturing takes place in very large facilities. If you want to build a computer chip, you need a giant semiconductor fabrication facility. But nature can grow complex molecular machines using nothing more than a plant.”
10. “We are looking at a future where to a first approximation, everyone is wealthy.”
11. “There are certain things that are inherently scarce. For example, there is only a certain amount of beachfront property in California. It is going to be scarce, it is going to be expensive.”
12. “We see an entire planet which has many limitations.”
13. “One of the concepts essential to molecular manufacturing is that of a self-replicating manufacturing system. That concept has lagged behind in its acceptance.”
14. “What we refer to as ‘death’ is just a set of symptoms that have proven resistant to treatment.”
15. “One of the things that we can say with confidence is that we will have much lighter, much stronger materials, and this will reduce the cost of air flight, and the cost of rockets.”
16. “A potato can grow quite easily on a very small plot of land. With molecular manufacturing, we’ll be able to have distributed manufacturing, which will permit manufacturing at the site using technologies that are low-cost and easily available.”
17. “The first approximation in this future that we’re looking at is that everyone will be physically well off. They will have a great abundance in material goods, and I think that will soften some of the conflicts we see now.”
18. “It looks as though yields of over 10 times what we can currently grow per acre are feasible if you control the CO2 concentration, the humidity, the temperature, all the various factors that plants depend on to grow rapidly.”
19. “Today we see a human population of over 6 billion people, many of whom have serious medical conditions, which either can’t be treated or cannot be treated economically.”
20. “Machines built by human beings they will function correctly if we provide them with a very specific environment. But if that environment is changed, they won’t function at all.”
21. “If you think the technology is infeasible, you don’t worry about what it might do and what its potential is.”
22. “Because of technological limits, there is a certain amount of food that we can produce per acre. If we were to have intensive greenhouse agriculture, we could have much higher production.”
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