2014 National Wormhole Week Blogfest: hosted by Stephen Tremp, Alex Cavanaugh and L  Diane Wolfe

Stephen_Wormfest 2014BlogHop

With all the breakthrough discoveries mankind is on the cusp of, are we playing God?

The challenge for Wormfest 2014 is to name one thing where science advances mankind, and one where technology with unforeseen consequences will go too far and set mankind back. Example: De-Extinction, or bringing back extinction species through back breeding, genetic engineering, and cloning. Speaking of de-extinction, the book and movie Jurassic Park comes to mind where science takes a huge leap forward, but also backfires.

To take the second thing first,  I was thinking of this microchip idea I’ve used for the Viridian System series (or rather, not used, since they dig them out).  It’s seen as a good thing by the ‘civilised’ worlds since it gives people access to everywhere they can go, access to food, water, medicine etc, without having to register or purchase it.  It gets rid of the need for personal wealth, or at least carrying cash and the whole monetary system surrounding that.  However, free thinkers away from the centre of the galaxy see the Imperium using  it as a control measure, restricting access and monitoring what the population is doing.  In the Viridian System most have dug it out in order not to be monitored.  Scanning biometrics to give authorisation or security is also out of favour.  Keys and papers are more trusted, despite the ease of forging papers.  Acceptance that people will, but it’s not such a problem in a free world?

Interestingly I have something similar in Talent Seekers (book 5 of the Princelings of the East series), in the beginning of security passes.  That may become an issue as unrest starts spreading in the Realms.  It’s hardly a novel idea, though it’s the best I can think of at the moment.

Something that might advance mankind is a medical or genetic method of stopping the desire to fight, or to promote co-operation between peoples.  The inspiration for this came from the  Guardian’s Saturday magazine feature “Kids ask questions” (or similar title).  A 7 year-old asked “why do people fight wars?”

This was not the answer given, but my thought extension on the reply.  A testosterone inhibitor, developed as a way of controlling mankind’s urge to fight.  It might end all wars and disputes, but to what extent would creativity also be inhibited – the drive to create?  If everyone lives in harmony, does no-one compete?  Is it the end of completion, and do sports exist?  Does it lead to a homogenous mess where no-one differs from anyone else?  Does society stagnate?  Or are specific people singled out for controlled testosterone shots… sportspeople, gladiators… leaders?

That sounds dangerous.

To see what other people in this blogfest think, hop the list!

Wormfest 2014

18 thoughts on “Wormfest 2014

  • 10 March, 2014 at 1:56 pm
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    Interesting final question. I’m reading Jared Diamond’s The World Until Yeserday, and the first section deals with war–how it’s fought in different societies, and why. No real clear answer on the latter, but scarce resources are high on the list. That being the case, I don’t see the problem going away, the direction we’re going 🙁

    • 10 March, 2014 at 7:46 pm
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      I think I meant to get hold of that book – thanks for the reminder.

      • 10 March, 2014 at 9:55 pm
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        Thought-provoking, as all his books, but I didn’t get as much out of the war section as out of his other books (so far Guns, Germs, Steel an Collapse). I just started the section on children, which I expect will have more immediacy, if only to confirm my conviction that I know NOTHING about raising children (just ask my teens. . . ).

        • 11 March, 2014 at 10:02 am
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          I think the best people know that they know nothing about raising children – the worst ones thnk they know it all 🙂

          • 11 March, 2014 at 5:44 pm
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            This probably has to do with self-awareness. Because any parent who is paying attention knows that they will never know how to raise the kids. It’s made worse by the differences between even very close siblings.

  • 10 March, 2014 at 2:57 pm
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    You have made some valid points. Removing that need to fight is ok if it applies to a harmonious world, but what happens when a real ‘independence day’ or ‘mars attacks’ happens. . .? And we want to invite them to tea. . .

    We had better think about consequences before we decide to nip and tuck our DNA.
    Enjoyed your post. I’m visiting from the Wormfest!

    • 10 March, 2014 at 7:47 pm
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      Thanks for visiting! Looking forward to visiting your site.

  • 10 March, 2014 at 4:50 pm
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    I think we’d need to keep that drive to create. And testosterone is required for the proper development of a man’s brain. What happens when it’s limited or withheld?

  • 10 March, 2014 at 5:14 pm
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    Interesting post. I’ve thought for years that chips with medical history would be invaluable and chips would obviate the need for passports.

    • 10 March, 2014 at 7:51 pm
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      You could do a huge amount of stuff with chips. Including keeping people in the places you want to keep them.

      Did you ever see one of the Tales of the Unexpected where a man kept a pet shop? He kept a small zoo at the back, animals of most types in cages with automatic door releases at feeding time. Then he captured a pair of humans to see if they responded the same way…. Never forgot that one!

  • 10 March, 2014 at 9:43 pm
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    Serenity!!! Remember how the reevers came about. They tried to control people’s aggressive urges. Love reading your thoughts.

    • 11 March, 2014 at 10:03 am
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      Thanks, Susan!

    • 11 March, 2014 at 10:01 am
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      Yeah 😀

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  • 17 March, 2014 at 10:04 pm
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    Hope I’m better late than never here…
    I like the idea of ending wars but don’t know if messing with hormones or genes is the way to do it. Alternating humanity internally could have some serious side effects.
    Still, good points.
    Good post.

    • 18 March, 2014 at 4:03 pm
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      Glad I’m not the only one still working my way through the list, Toi. Thanks for visiting!

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