The Unedited
Free space for free expression in English & Italian
(Un)Edited by Carlo Pelanda
Managed by F.Brunelli e L.Borgiani


By Anne Rothschild

1. Catastrophic Scenarios
Joy, Bill. "Why the Future Doesn't Need Us.?

Negative prophecy from Sun Microsystems co-founder concerning perilous advances in biotechnology, nanotechnology, and genetic engineering.

Lanier, Jaron. "The Endgame of Humanism.?

Humanism slips second to the development of science. What effects this might have on psychology and culture, as well as reactions against science.

Rifkin, Jeremy. "Apocalypse When??

Introduces term "genetic pollution.?Spells out various dangers of genetic engineering. Discusses who will be liable if there is a catastrophe.

New Scientist. 10/31/98, Vol. 160 Issue 2158, p.34.

Rifkin, Jeremy. "Splice World.?

Environmental, social, ethical concerns of genetic engineering. Lists a few short- term benefits of genetic engineering. Discusses various companies attempting to exert influence and control over genetic commerce. Predicts positives of life in next century.

Geographical Magazine. Jan1999, Vol. 71 Issue 1, p.48.

2. Non-catastrophic Scenarios
Bobinsky, Eric. "Mind Children: The Future of Robot and Human Intelligence.? Book Review.

Objective, positive review of Moravec's book. Cites quotes from text, lays framework of book and high points of prophecy. BYTE Magazine. April1989, p.51.

Moravec, Hans. "Superhumanism. Moravec predicts by 2040, robots will supersede humans in productivity and efficiency. He fully embraces technological advances, and asserts that robots are of most use to humans in domestic and economic senses. Answers economic concerns. Pushes the expansion of technology to benefit the world before it inevitably will be taken over by robots.

Moravec, Hans. "Robots With Human Intelligence" Moravec's positive robotic predictions. The Futurist. March-April 1989, p.52.

Watson, James D. "All For the Good." Denounces postponing clearly beneficial research because of dangers that cannot be exactly,3266,17679-1,00.html

3. GMO AgricultureNegatives:"Confab Highlights Biotech Surge" Bt corn produces a bacterial toxin in its leaves that is harmful to insect,1282,35345,00.html
"EU, US Set Up Panel on GM Foods" Fears in UK, Germany, France on GMO crop contamination.,1282,36676,00.html

"Farmers Plight Shows GM Trouble" Monsanto accusing farmer of stealing seeds. Farmer is suing on grounds of polluting his land without his,128237088,00.html

"Genetic Altering Down Under" New projects with various foods. Risk assessments.,1282,38503,00.html

Pennybacker, Mindy. "Fooling Mother Nature" Dangers of bioengineered foods. Biotech agriculture promotes chemical dependence on chemical additive. Failure in labeling of bio-engineered foods. Impact on sustainable agriculture. Sierra Magazine. Jan/Feb1998, Vol. 83, Issue 1, p.14.

Turner, Lisa. "Playing With Our Food." Need for more studies on long-term effects of genetic manipulation. Dangers to humans and environment. Production of allergens in foods and unexpected mutations in an organism. Concerns of genetically altered seeds spreading into other areas where they can threaten wild crops.Better Nutrition. Jun2000, Vol. 62 Issue 6, p.56.

"US Probes Taco Bells Alleged Use of Corn." Taco shells sold by Taco Bell tested positive to a strain of bioengineered corn which has not yet been proven safe for human consumption.

4. GMO Agriculture

Positives: "In Defense of the Demon Seed" States that public fear of GMO's come from poor understanding. Genetic modification is no more dangerous in the laboratory than in the field. Defends topics such as antibiotic resistance, changes in plant chemistry, and dispersement of modified genes to unmodified organisms. No evidence of harm at this point. Economist, 06/13/98, Vol. 347 Issue 8072, p.13.

"Monsanto to Offer Free Rice Tech" Monsanto to offer solutions for vitamin A rice technology to various researchers in developing countries. Lack of vitamin A is dangerous to health, but some researchers believe a magic solution is,1282,38043,00.html

"Spuds That Stop Disease" Human immunity to Norwalk virus from vaccine in GMO potato. Met again with dissent about overdosing and transferring genes from various researchers.,1282,37525,00.html

5. Medicine

Cohen, Karen. "Biotech Firms Seek Riches in the Secret Life of Genes" Pharmaceutical gene industries are about to boom, many companies staking,1118,SFO_274908,00.html

"Science and Business: A Bad Mix" First human death from gene injection during surgery.,1282,34148,00.html

6. Robotics

"Digiscents Mines Human Genome to Make Sense of Smell" Company press release; Work with DoubleTwist in invention of "Aromagenomics?to revolutionize world of smell.

Morrow, Lance "Robots: Will They Love Us? Will We Love Them" Robots with human characteristics. Projections of convergence with humans and robots.,2960,53848,00.html

Rochell, Anne. "Robot Assists in Pediatric Surgery" Doctor repairs 2-year-old's heart with help of robot named Aesop.

Suplee, Curt. "The Robot Revolution Is on the Way" Various devices entering every life. Robotics are on the verge of explosion. Quotes from Moravec and Kurzweil concerning machine competence surpassing any human

"The Robot Revolution!"(Robots in Portland) Various examples of current robotic creations by corporations and people; facts on telerobotic projects; neat inventions. (13-page website).

"World's Greatest Android Projects" 18 examples of humanoid robotic projects from around the world. Honda's $100 million robot that can walk up and down stairs. Life-size pictures included.

7. Military

Barnaby, Wendy. "Blood on Their Hands" Biologists not owning up to the truth that their work is leading to creation of ever nastier weapons.

Regis, Ed. "Biowar" Various examples of altering organism's genes for strange experiments such as people with gills, or permanent body armour (Mr. Armadillo).

8. Ethics

"Embryonic Cell Debate Is On" Two opposing views of stem cell research. A wheelchair bound, blind, and partially deaf Director of National Catholic Office of Persons with Disabilities believes humans should learn to appreciate their vulnerabilities. Professor of cell biology believes people will become accustomed to producing embryos for utilitarian uses.,1286,38401,00.html

McGee, Glenn. "Ethical Issues in Genetics in the Next 100 Years" Projections of bioethics in the next hundred years in three key areas: bearing children, increasing healthiness of the public through reduction of "bad?genes, as well as the creation of programs in which the ideas are generated that genetics merits it's own category of analysis and regulation. (A lecture presented in Kobe, Japan to the UNESCO Asian Bioethics Congress; Kobe & Fukui Japan, November 6, 1997)

Noble, Dennis. "The Gene's Out of the Bottle." Argues that a more open style of politics is needed if people are to make educated decisions about future uses of biotechnology. It is wrong to assume that all forms of biotechnology are potentially dangerous. Regulation and public information should be directed to ensure that benefits and information be made as widely available to the public as possible.

New Statesman, 09/27/99, Vol.128 Issue 4456, pxxvi."Religion Grappling With Tech" Science institutions want to help ethical problem that stems from religion through education.,1282,37483,00.html

9. Climate Change

Official Scenarios: Cutajar, Michael Zammit. "Press Briefing By Executive Secretary Of United Nations Climate Change Convention.

Briefing #2 points:

Likely consequences of global warming include: the spread of insect-borne diseases, a rise in health hazards, sea-level rise, changes in rainfall, increased stresses on agriculture and forests.

Briefing #3 points:

One scenario stated that the Russian Federation, Canada, and countries near the North Pole might have increased opportunity for agricultural production despite various downsides such as different soils and the release of methane. In addition, global warming is expected to increase the frequency and severity of tropical storms.

Briefing #4 points:

The challenge is to develop technology that would sell cars which were cleaner and that responded to people's needs.\

Mccarthy, Michael. "Heat Is On The US As It Claims That Planting Trees Will Stop Global Warming"

The UN's official research body, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, released a paper stating that hundreds of scientists now think the atmosphere willwarm at twice the rate anticipated a decade ago. Implies disaster for billions around the globe, namely in agricultural and rising sea-level senses. Britain's own climate scientists drew similar conclusions last week.

"The Conservation and Sustainable Use of Forests in Latin America" UNEP issued baseline scenario stating that poverty and demographic pressures are the main causes of environmental degradation. Figures of yearly loss of tropical rainforests, as well as assessments of forests at risk. 2000/aps-lac/index.htm

"United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change" Most reporting Parties stressed they are facing significant vulnerability to current climate phenomena. All countries assessed climate changes have impacted agricultural and food security, and many have noted possible adverse effects on fisheries, water resources, and human health (in terms of air quality and disease). Subsidiary Body For Implementation Thirteenth session, Part II. The Hague, 13-18 November 2000.Agenda item 10 (c) p.10-13

.Unofficial Scenarios:

Ahlstrom, Dick. "Climate Change May Switch Off Gulf Stream. Ireland's Green Fields May Be Replaced By Frozen Tundra With Severe Storms and Extensive Flooding, If Predicted Climate Change Takes Place." Two main scenarios emerging for this region: One, that the Atlantic force more frequent and stronger storms at this region. Two, that rising temperatures will speed the melting of Europe's glaciers and cause Ireland to turn into frozen tundra. The Irish Times. News Features, p.16. Nov. 2, 2000.

Binnie, C.J. "Climate Change And It's Potential Effect On Water-Resources In Asia" A recent scenario for 2050 shows most of Asia warming by over 1 degrees Celsius. Mean annual precipitation would decrease in parts of Southern Asia. Detailed models of Europe show significant changes in seasonal rainfall, which will lead to an increase in domestic and municipal demand for water. Regional climate change studies must be ordered to develop future water resource planning. Journal of Water Supply Research And Technology-aqua. Vol.46, no.5, pp.274-282, Oct. 97.

Edwards, M.J. "Security Implications of a Worst-Case Scenario of Climate Change in the South-West Pacific" A worst-case scenario is presented for the island states of the Southwest Pacific in terms of land loss or rendered inhabitable as a result of climate change impacts. Land loss is the focus of the paper for two reasons: One, land is interwoven with the economic, spiritual, and cultural security of the people on these islands, and two, an environmental threat is more threatening than any other social aspects of these areas.

Australian Geographer. Vol. 30, no. 3, pp. 311-330, Nov. 99. "Hydro Keeps Emissions Low in Brazil" US Pew Center has recently released a study that examines Brazil developments. It produces very little greenhouse emissions due to hydro-electric power, however, gas emissions are expected to quadruple over the next 20 years.Water Power and Dam Construction. p.6. July 31, 2000.

"INSIDE TRACK: Optimism Over Global Warming WORTH WATCHING" Scientists published a more optimistic scenario in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Scientists which states that the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions is not needed. Funded by NASA, the study says that instead the focus should be on the declination of other variables such as black soot, ozone and methane. Financial Times (London). INSIDE TRACK: p.19. August 31, 2000. Mongomery, David.

"Is Global Warming Hot Air Or a Cold, Hard Fact Of Life On Earth" Predictions for Scotland of global warming changes including: submerged golf courses, increased severe storms and temperatures, loss of biodiversity, and flooding.The Scotsman. P.4, Nov. 25, 2000 Vergano, Dan. "Dispute Burns Over Cure For Hot Air."

Tensions are rising as various studies of how to stop climate change produce differing answers. UNEP's conclusion of an average temperature raise of 10 degrees, in addition to NASA's focus on reducing black soot, ozone and methane, are resulting in dissent from environmentalists and scientists. USA Today. LIFE: p.10D. Nov. 14, 2000

By UGA students