We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

That fry don’t fly

I have had a number of responses and suggestions (most of them polite) on how to deal with smart tagged money. Dale Amon even provided a recipe for dealing with the pesky things. While I’m sure it will work, that’s not the point.

On the money issue, I’m betting that once tagging becomes common place, non-emitting currency will be treated as counterfeit. At best not accepted, at worse generating a call to the authorities. Foil lined bags and wallets will probably be one answer. There will be others. My point was there will be a cost in time, effort and/or finances to achieve the anonymity we now enjoy gratis.

Taking the whole counter-measures idea one step further, I’m sure you will be able to cleanse yourself of smart tags on, in and about your person. When emiting is the norm, however, non-emitters will be regarded with suspicion. It will be seen as attempts to hide your identity. As a modern analogy, you can wear gloves and a full-face ski-mask into a mall, but don’t expect people to treat you normally.

Technology is a very double edged sword, and the ways it is applied are often vastly different from what the inventors intended. Witness Alfred Nobel and dynamite. He was a pacifist who saw the power of dynamite as a way to help cash poor, resource rich countries access the wealth trapped inside the earth. Within a few months of introduction to the world, it was applied to the military and the destructive effects of war increased exponentially. In a similiar vein, how many people involved in the discovery and production of smart tags do you think foresaw the use by the US Army of tags on bees to locate landmines?

The applications of smart tags will be limited only be our imaginations. Literally the stuff of dreams. The tricky part will be ensuring that the dreams in our heads don’t become nightmares in our waking lives.

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