Nanotech’s dark side debated

November 5, 2001 | Source: Small Times

In light of the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11 and anthrax headlines, it’s not hard for some to imagine a nightmare scenario involving a new generation of terrorists able to obtain infinitely more powerful nanoweapons.
As nanotech makes the transition from the drawing board to reality, every development brings the fledgling industry closer to the day when many believe government regulations and secrecy will be needed to prevent abuses.

Ultimately, says Glenn Reynolds, a law professor and nanotech expert at the University of Tennessee, “the best defense against nanotech misuse is good nanotechnology.”

In much the way that the private sector came up with products to fight computer viruses, rather than take information technology back into the closet of closed research, nanotechnology will find a way to counter each new threat that arises.