August 23, 2005

Multiple Paths To Destruction

David Berube alerts us to a forthcoming movie in the Sci-Fi Channel, Path of Destruction, aka Stratosphere, where either “nanobots escape and devour all they encounter” or according to a different source

“The movie opens with a faulty nanotechnology experiment that results in a massive, deadly explosion. The company's CEO manages to sidestep blame by framing a meddling young reporter (Katherine), who now holds the only surviving evidence needed to expose the truth. All the while, the dangerous nanoparticles-- having escaped from the explosion into the Stratosphere-- threaten to destroy nearby cities with wildly destructive weather patterns. Among the chaos of the storms, and on the run from the authorities, Katherine must-- with the help of a young scientist-- get the evidence to the goverment to enlist their help before it's too late... and the deadly disaster turns worldwide. “

In other words it’s a typical boilerplate made for TV disaster movie and the nanoparticles/bots could just as easily be substituted for bees, boggarts or boils with little alteration to the plot or dialogue.

It does indicate that many in the nano community are still terrified of negative media portrayal of technology, as if it will make much difference. Jurassic Park didn’t result in hordes of demonstrators turning up outside biotech labs, and it would be most unusual if the same happened as a result of a film ever being made of “Prey,” which according to Howard Lovy now seems unlikely.

The ‘general public’ are smarter than many give them credit for, and are usually capable of making a hazy distinction between fact and fiction, although not in every case. If you want to blacken the name of a technology (or anything else), it is far more effective to have Prince Charles worrying about it on the front page of the Daily Mail than make a movie.

Posted by Cientifica at August 23, 2005 07:36 PM | TrackBack

Solution: unleash nanobots on Hollywood.

Posted by: S.R. Prozak at August 24, 2005 10:27 AM
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