To me, these seem more like the paranoid ramblings of someone who assumes the definite worst than of a supposed visionary who wants to Internet-enable every refrigerator and toaster on the planet.
If you don't understand the inevitability of his predictions - or at least the inevitability of facing these scenarios - I can see how it would look like fear mongering. Those that don't heed the past are condemned to repeat it.
Out-of-control replication, even if it does involve "only" computers and networks, do cause substantial damage in the physical world. How many businesses lost incredible amounts of money in lost time and productivity due to the Melissa virus?
Do you not see that what he's talking about is many order-magnitudes greater than Melissa??
...and your run-of-the-mill terrorist won't have access to destructive nanites or the GM technology needed to target certain genetic signatures.
This illustrates how little you're understanding the risk here. Moore's law stipulates a doubling of computer speed every 18 months (actually the density of the chip, but...), so if this holds through to 2030, then we will have computers about a million times (1.048 million) faster than what IBM released this month. That's about a thousand TERRAHERTZ. On your desktop. As he explicitly points out, this is a crime that will be "knowledge-based". ie, the tools and raw materials will no longer be requisite for exploiting this power. When this occurs will be purely a function of who can get enough bright minds together willing to do the coding (whatever form that might take).
In addition, his arguments only look at the extremes, namely Kurzweil's desire to basically be a Borg vs. Star Trek's campy writing showing how bad a Borg species would be. I don't see any reason why a cybernetic species would immediately go out and try to assimilate other species into their cybernetic ranks.
First, if you look at the distant future (which 30 years is with computers), then you will not only see the extreme but you will surpass it. He's being overly cautious, actually. Secondly, he explains quite lucidly why a speices would want to destroy us. We're not useful. Termites hog up resources that we'd rather have for ourselves. Namely, our houses. We don't dislike termites just because they're there, but we have no problem erraditcating them when doing so becomes less costly than not.
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