December 18, 2002
Radio Remote Controlled Bacteria

Consider the cloak and dagger possibilities for when bacteria will become controllable by radio waves.

Only millionths of a millimetre across, the gold nanoparticle acts as an antenna, harvesting energy from a radio-frequency electromagnetic field. This energy breaks up the enzyme, rendering it useless. When the field is switched off, the parts of the enzyme re-assemble of their own accord.

This is grist for science fiction and spy TV show and movie plots. Imagine someone who could be blackmailed by the threat of activating dormant bacteria in their body. "Mr. Bond, if you do not cooperate with us immediately I will unleash the bubonic plague bacteria in you with a flick of this button." Of course Bond would have a radio cigarette lighter signal jammer that Q gave him. He could have secretly seduced the fiendish bad guy's equally bad girlfriend the night before and unknowingly infected her with the bacteria too. When the bad guy flicks the activation signal she'd collapse on the balcony and they'd both see it happen thru the plate glass window. The bad guy would run at him in a rage and Bond would deftly send him thru the plate glass window and over the balcony to his death.

The scaled up mega-disaster version would involve a dormant bacteria that had infected most of a country's population. Terrorists would threaten to kill them all unless assorted demands were met.

Share |      Randall Parker, 2002 December 18 02:21 PM  Biotech Manipulations


Comments
Bob said at December 18, 2002 7:05 PM:

To his death? No, I don't think so.

To his apparent death maybe, but not to his death. He has to land in the ocean with the waves crashing over the rocks or in a smokestack or something.

On second thought, he shouldn't go through the window at all. He should try to escape in some unlikely vehicle he had hidden away just for this purpose. Perhaps one of those two-wheeled motorized broomhandles--only with rocket boosters or something.

Perhaps, he could throw a switch and his nano-bots would construct the vehicle from a nearby desk or the balcony or something.

Billy B. said at December 24, 2002 7:03 AM:

You'll see, it's all coming around. Just, who will be in control? Good or bad, only time will tell.

Randall Parker said at December 24, 2002 10:36 AM:

Billy, it hadn't occurred to me before but this sort of technology could also be used to create the Borg Collective. Get everyone infected by a bacteria that would turn them all into radio senders and receivers . Make receivers built into basic control areas. Then they will all become part of the Borg Collective.

Of course rival groups would try to block each other's transmitters and then large blocks of humanity would have their allegiances shifted back and forth.

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