Flash Drive Bullets

So I was reading this post by Elusive Wapiti, where he discusses assault weapons bans and totalitarianism. Good post, go read it. It’s about digitally fabricating guns, and how efforts are already underway to outlaw it. As usual, the self-anointed Guardians of Society build a house on a foundation of sand – the best way to ensure the safety of law-abiding citizens is not to disarm them, leaving them at the mercy of the lawless. Rather, if everyone has access to a gun, and knows that everyone else around him could be carrying as well, the chances of assault drop dramatically. But there’s a lot more going on here than a statist power grab.

A group named Defense Distributed is designing digital blueprints for firearms for 3D printing. The goal is to create a file via 3D modeling which can be distributed, and a working gun printed for anyone who wants it.

They sum up their goals, and the potential impact –

Insofar as possible, we hope to facilitate a printable firearm creative commons. Our weapons project’s namesake, a “wiki” is likely the best platform for preserving and collaboratively producing knowledge related to 3D printable firearms for years to come.

…This project might change the way we think about gun control and consumption. How do governments behave if they must one day operate on the assumption that any and every citizen has near instant access to a firearm through the Internet? Let’s find out.

I like funny cat videos as much as anyone else, but we’ve barely scratched the surface of what the internet is capable of. Printable guns! Store ammo files on your flash drive. And that’s just the beginning. There may come a day when 3D printers are capable of producing organic structures – people could keep digital scans of their bodies – including MRIs – on file. If they suffer an accident, replacement parts could be printed out, such as a new heart. Or new lungs for smokers. Lose a few teeth in a bar fight? Dental records on your phone. Your body could be scanned at age 20 and kept on file until you’re 50 and take a trip to Posh de Leon’s Fountain Of Youth and Rejuvenation Spa.

Some people are not too happy about this, however. As National Review writes

The idea of crowd-sourced plastic rifles and pistols being zapped into existence, Weird Science–style, in workshops and garages across the nation unnerves Representative Steve Israel (D., N.Y.) — so much so that he’s sponsoring an amendment to the Undectectable Firearms Act in order to regulate 3-D-printed gun components and establish penalties for their private fabrication. But as others have pointed out, such a law would be a nightmare to enforce.

The utter lack of imagination among bureaucrats and progressive types (but I repeat myself) is stupefying. Not only do they not have the capacity to remotely visualize the possibilities such technology offers, but they make heavy-handed, short-sighted attempts at regulating or even outlawing it –

In an effort to outflank the likes of DD, a zealous government could move to mandate that manufacturers design 3-D printers to leave secret, unique watermarks on every object fabricated, as the Secret Service convinced manufacturers of color laser printers to do in an effort to catch currency counterfeiters. But technological control begets technological revolt: The secret laser-printer codes were discovered and revealed by a digital-rights group in 2005, and their existence prompted a public outcry. Besides, what good is a watermark when a 3-D assembler can assemble another 3-D assembler? [emphasis mine]

Seriously. It’s like filing off the serial numbers, but better. Make a new assembler. Or two. Or three. Destroy the original. Start a black market selling illegal, untraceable 3D printers along with all the other cool things you’re designing. Pair this up with an alternative currency like  Bitcoin (I noticed one of the people on DD’s “About” page has some experience with it) and who knows what could happen? This could spark a tectonic shift in economic systems.

It looks like they’re running all this super-ultra-high-tech with Windows XP, which cracks me up.

Pranking will become a High Art

Pranking will become a High Art

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About nightskyradio

Random signals from nowhere in particular.

Posted on February 2, 2013, in Economic$, Fun Stuff, Liberty, Life, Science!, The World That's Coming and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. Thanks for the link, nightsky!

  2. Another thoughtfully quirky and quirkily thoughtful future shock post.

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