X-Message-Number: 10925
Date: Mon, 14 Dec 1998 11:37:26 +0100
From:  (John de Rivaz)
Subject: Re: Virtual reality, money

In article: <>  
> Message #10920
> Date: Sun, 13 Dec 1998 05:48:10 -0500
> From: Thomas Donaldson <>
> But more than that, a virtual world won't give me anything that could
> not have been foreseen --- not necessarily by my unaided brain, but 
> by any kind of computation, no matter how powerful. 

Yes, it is interesting to read The Fabric of Reality by David Deutsch
Do you know that it is physically impossible simulate certain things in 
virtual reality? Such as unconsciousness (think about it:-)

A flight simulator cannot simulate the zero-g flight loops used to train 

This author too carefully explains away some widely held beliefs about a 
natural afterlife, but I know of no interest in cryopreservation here 


More on money

An article in New Scientist this week describes the Linux operating system 
for PCs, which is produced by people working for the fun of it. Apparently 
there is a Microsoft memo that considers it to be a serious threat to the 
company. According to NSc, the memo can be found on 
<http://www.opensource.co.uk/halloween.html> (I have not checked it.)

In the spheres of art and computer software commercial piracy may be seen by 
most people as a crime, but who hasn't at some time copied something for a 
friend? I am sure that if Mr Gates had had his license fee for each piece of 
copied software he would be better off. Of course, the addition to his 
wealth would make no practical difference to his lifestyle.

Once every single item of physical matter becomes a nanotechnology product, 
ie design its assembler program and you can have as many as you want for 
nothing, all material things will take on the characteristics of recorded 
works of art or computer programs.

However there are companies that do make money from Linux - selling 
consultancy services and books on the subject. To an individual who can't 
fly, a helicopter is valueless without flying lessons, for example. (Indeed 
it could have negative value if he tries to work it by trial and error and 
kills himself.)

Money will have a place for a long time, but it will be a declining place I 
am sure but nevertheless it will be essential for survival for a long time 

Sincerely,     * Longevity Report:  http://www.longevb.demon.co.uk/lr.htm
John de Rivaz  * Fractal Report:    http://www.longevb.demon.co.uk/fr.htm
**************** Homepage:http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/JohndeR
    In the information age, sharing can increase world wealth enormously,
        because giving information does not decrease your information.

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