3D Printing

The scarcity issue


Here’s something I’ve been thinking about and it more or less drives the logic of the investigations here: You can ignore inequality as long as there is the prospect of infinite growth. Once you acknowledge resources are finite, decency forces you to embrace equality as a social goal.

This is why climate change is an essential part of any consideration of the future of work, rest and play: because it brings us up against the physical limits of not just capitalism but of the planet itself.

The question that technologies like 3D-printing raise — technologies that drive production costs to zero, self-replicate, and are able to recycle the vast mountains of waste that are the by-product of the developed world — is whether this will actually amount to the end of scarcity.

To the extent that they do mean that, then we have reason to be hopeful, and as progressives, embrace them.

We just have to get the politics — particularly in the transition period — right.

Yep, that’s all.

Categories: 3D Printing, equality, Work

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