Thursday, November 6, 2008

US CTO: Bill Joy

I saw this entry on the NYTimes technology blog. Apparently Barack Obama wants to appoint a US CTO, and Bill Joy has been brought to his attention.

Bill Joy has always been a personal technology-hero of mine. He co-founded Sun Microsystems, played a major part in the creation of the SPARC microprocessor, and played a major part in the creation of Java. If you run a mac, it's kernel is built from his branchild, BSD, and if you use unix and edit files, it's likely you use vi, also created by Bill Joy.

Bill Joy is awesome. He retired from Sun in 2003, and now works for a venture capital firm focusing on green energy.

Here is a cool interview on Nerd TV.

However


Bill Joy has been leading this so called neo-luddite movement, which opposes genetic and nanotechnology research for fear that we'll run into a Terminator-like scenario. I agree there are risks with those types of research, but if we don't do the research, someone else will -- and there are HUGE upsides to this type of research.

I believe that free market capitalism works (for the most part), and I don't want to see regulations put on genetic and nanotech research. I support Barack Obama, and I believe government intervention and minor regulations are necessary to fix our current economic crisis, but that intervention and regulation should be focused on our financial sector and should not extend to our technology sector, or other sectors for that matter.

I greatly respect and admire Bill Joy, but his appointment will somewhat worry me.

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