20160413 Variations on a theme of Adam Smith

Re: 20160413 Variations on a theme of Adam Smith

Postby tahanson43206 » Mon Feb 12, 2018 1:21 pm

20180210 Adam Smith Thread

From Reference #1:
Page 1027 Text from “The expense of the peace establishment of the colonies was, ... ” through “ … would not have been undertaken.”

Because this is the second to last page of “The Wealth of Nations” (Reference #1) I will change to considering only one sentence or part of a paragraph at a time, in order to extend as far as possible the benefit of using Mr. Smith's work as a foundation for this thread.

In this section Mr. Smith considers how the acquisition of colonies has resulted in expenses required to preserve, protect and to maintain them.

Looking at the situation from 240+ years later, it seems to me that Mr. Smith is describing the state of mind of a board member of a corporation which has invested in subsidiary operations which have turned out to be less profitable than had been hoped. A significant part of the expense Mr. Smith cites is due to occurrence of wars with European competitors. In 2018, it seems to me that the United States is pouring large sums into low intensity conflicts in multiple locations around the globe, and pouring even greater sums into preparation for large scale conflict with potential state adversaries.

I'm sure I'm not the first to wonder if warfare, or preparation for warfare, is a permanent characteristic of life, and specifically of intelligent life.

In the comparatively benign regime of economic competition, corporations appear to be destined to compete for customers, to the disadvantage of their peers. The regulated regime of sports competition may provide a model that might apply to larger scale human competition, so that actual imposition of destructive force to achieve some desired condition, or to protect some desired condition, might be less likely.

***

In an attempt to understand how new technology might help the United States to address the present dilemma, this thread will include discussion of “FAB” by Neil Gershenfeld. “FAB” was published in 2005, and in 2018 Dr. Gershenfeld has teamed with his brothers Alan and John to update “FAB” and to try to see into the future of “Personal Manufacturing”. The new book is entitled “Designing Reality”. It is my intention to flow directly from “FAB” to “Designing Reality”, although influences from the 2018 book may show up in this thread as the discussion at hand may inspire them.

Reference #4 Page 22
Title: “Meejin”

In this section, Dr. Gershenfeld introduces a student named Meejin , who took a class entitled: “How To Make (almost) Anything”.

The product Meejin imagined, designed and built was intended for to address a need to maintain personal space. The system Meejin created emulated the functions of porcupine quills, by springing out piano wires to “announce and defend” the wearer's personal space.

It occurs to me that corporations whose ships are attacked by pirates are in need of defensive mechanisms of a similar nature, able to dissuade pirates without harming them unnecessarily.


In my own quest here and elsewhere, I am looking for paths that will lead toward one or more of a class of futures described by numerous science fiction writers over the decades. Without regard to the location in time or space, I've noticed that science fiction authors often assume the presence of a combination of technology which allows an individual or small group to live comfortably. The circumstances often involve a space ship with artificial intelligence which not only transports the heroine to her destination, but provides for every material need, and often for psychological needs of the human.

Humans on Earth in 2018 seem to me to be accumulating knowledge which would facilitate such comfortable living circumstances, and indeed a few exceedingly wealthy individuals are able to approach them. Examples include yachts able to travel around the world. In 2018, to the best of my knowledge, no such vessel is able to operate for a year without restocking supplies. However, apparently there exist nuclear submarines able to operate under water for months at a time without surfacing for anything.

Such submarines show a pathway that can (and does) work when the vehicle is enclosed in a heat sink fluid which provides elements needed to replenish oxygen and water supplies. A space ship such as envisioned by so many science fiction authors would “swim” in a vacuum into which heat could be dumped via radiation. Apparently that mechanism works for space probes which use atomic heat sources to provide power.

Today, I'm thinking about how a decent sized ocean going vessel might provide a suitable environment for an experiment it trying to create a sustainable community. It's not clear to me right now how large such a vessel would need to be, if it were to include all the elements of the “cabin in the woods” imagined last week.

A stand alone ocean going vessel might include:
<> A power supply using fission or fusion to meet all needs for human occupants
<> Water and air treatment to insure pure supplies of these components
<> Food growth facilities to insure ample supplies of fresh produce
<> Manufacturing facilities able to make components of any equipment needed by the facility
<> Communications facilities to keep the crew in touch with the outside world as desired

The optimization process for such a vessel would (try to) find the right mix of people, equipment, space and supplies to allow the vessel to sail without needing resupply from shore facilities.

Modern ocean going condominiums show capabilities that point in the direction outlined above, but like yachts, they are good for only stretches of a few months or so without resupply.

(th)
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Re: 20160413 Variations on a theme of Adam Smith

Postby tahanson43206 » Sun Feb 18, 2018 6:05 pm

20180217 Adam Smith Thread

From Reference #1:
Page 1028 Text from “The expense of the peace establishment of the colonies was, ... ” through “ … would not have been undertaken.”

Because this is the last page of “The Wealth of Nations” (Reference #1) I will change to considering only one sentence at a time, in order to extend as far as possible the benefit of using Mr. Smith's work as a foundation for this thread. The entire page anticipates the coming dissolution of ties between Great Britain and the American colonies.

Begin Quotation:
It was because the colonies were supposed to be part of the British empire, that this expense was laid out upon them.
End Quotation.

While Mr. Smith's words above may be correct, it strikes me that they attempt to collapse the decisions and attitudes of thousands if not millions of people over centuries into a summary of just twenty-one words. However, in this final page of “The Wealth”, Mr. Smith appears to me to be building a crescendo as of a great symphony, so this short statement sets the stage for (what I perceive to be) his bitter closing.

***

In an attempt to understand how new technology might help the United States to address the present dilemma, this thread will include discussion of “FAB” by Neil Gershenfeld. “FAB” was published in 2005, and in 2018 Dr. Gershenfeld has teamed with his brothers Alan and John to update “FAB” and to try to see into the future of “Personal Manufacturing”. The new book is entitled “Designing Reality”. It is my intention to flow directly from “FAB” to “Designing Reality”, although influences from the 2018 book may show up in this thread as the discussion at hand may inspire them.

Reference #4 Pages 23 and 24
Title: “Shelley”

In this section, Dr. Gershenfeld introduces a student named Shelly , who took a class entitled: “How To Make (almost) Anything”.

The product Shelly imagined, designed and built was intended to address a need common to many MIT students, and by extension, to many college students around the world. Shelly designed an alarm clock that could only be turned off if the student woke sufficiently to solve a complex puzzle presented in electronic form. In this section, Dr. Gershenfeld provides a hint that the record of Shelly's work may be available for study by others, even though she is long departed from the scene.

Begin Quotation:
As she worked, she kept a technical log on a Web page that recorded her early ideas, emerging engineering files, and observations about what did and didn't work.
End Quotation.


This thread is primarily focused upon economics.

Education, and encouragement of enterprise are major elements of what I understand to be success factors for any economic system.

The local newspaper reported recently on an attempt to create an incubator for entrepreneurs in a region near to but separated from a major metropolitan area.

Begin Quotation:
The three entities have teamed up to launch the Delaware Entrepreneurial Center, …
End Quotation.

http://www.dispatch.com/news/20180219/n ... repreneurs

(th)
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Re: 20160413 Variations on a theme of Adam Smith

Postby tahanson43206 » Mon Feb 26, 2018 2:15 am

20180224 Adam Smith Thread

From Reference #1:
Page 1028

Because this is the last page of “The Wealth of Nations” (Reference #1) I will change to considering only one sentence at a time, in order to extend as far as possible the benefit of using Mr. Smith's work as a foundation for this thread. The entire page anticipates the coming dissolution of ties between Great Britain and the American colonies.

Begin Quotation:
But countries which contribute neither revenue nor military force towards the support of the empire, cannot be considered as provinces.
End Quotation.

Mr. Smith's words above seem reasonable enough, especially in the context of the discussion. However, I see in them a hint of anticipation of the change of attitude underway in England at the time Smith was writing, and certainly of the evolution of Smith's own thinking.

***

In an attempt to understand how new technology might help the United States to address the present dilemma, this thread will include discussion of “FAB” by Neil Gershenfeld. “FAB” was published in 2005, and in 2018 Dr. Gershenfeld has teamed with his brothers Alan and John to update “FAB” and to try to see into the future of “Personal Manufacturing”. The new book is entitled “Designing Reality”. It is my intention to flow directly from “FAB” to “Designing Reality”, although influences from the 2018 book may show up in this thread as the discussion at hand may inspire them.

Reference #4 Pages 25 through 27
Title: “Dalia”

In this section, Dr. Gershenfeld introduces an educational outreach initiative in an inner-city Boston community center. He highlights a student named Dalia, aged 11, who showed remarkable persistence in tackling a fab lab environment, and successfully assembling a circuit board which Dr. Gershenfeld was expecting would be assembled by one of the graduate students assisting with the project.

In the closing of this section, Dr. Gershenfeld states , about girls (and boys):
Begin Quotation:
In mastering these emerging means for personal fabrication, they're helping bring individual expression back into mass manufacturing, the subject of the next section.
End Quotation.
(th)
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Re: 20160413 Variations on a theme of Adam Smith

Postby tahanson43206 » Sun Mar 04, 2018 8:18 pm

20180303 Adam Smith Thread

From Reference #1:
Page 1028

Because this is the last page of “The Wealth of Nations” (Reference #1) I will change to considering only one sentence at a time, in order to extend as far as possible the benefit of using Mr. Smith's work as a foundation for this thread. The entire page anticipates the coming dissolution of ties between Great Britain and the American colonies.

Begin Quotation:
They may perhaps be considered as appendages, as a sort of splendid and showy equipage of the empire.
End Quotation.

Mr. Smith's words above reminded me of the (apparent) attitude of the United States toward the Island of Puerto Rico in the present time. The destruction of the infrastructure of the Island by hurricanes in 2017 revealed the attitude of neglect that is shown by the government of the United States toward the Island and its people. At least Mr. Smith appears to be dignifying the recalcitrant colonies as “splendid and showy”. That is not how I interpret the standing of Puerto Rico with respect to the United States at the present time.

Because this thread is based upon Adam Smith's writings, it is appropriate to comment upon “living” economics as it is unfolding “in real time” today in 2018. The President of the United States has very recently announced a concept to apply import tariff charges of 25 % on steel, and 10% on aluminum. Apparently this was done without consultation with anyone inside the administration or outside of it. The consequence is going to be interesting to watch, regardless of how it turns out, because persons who are knowledgeable of economics and politics are stepping forth to advance arguments on why this is a bad idea.


In an attempt to understand how new technology might help the United States to address the present dilemma, this thread will include discussion of “FAB” by Neil Gershenfeld. “FAB” was published in 2005, and in 2018 Dr. Gershenfeld has teamed with his brothers Alan and John to update “FAB” and to try to see into the future of “Personal Manufacturing”. The new book is entitled “Designing Reality”. It is my intention to flow directly from “FAB” to “Designing Reality”, although influences from the 2018 book may show up in this thread as the discussion at hand may inspire them.

Reference #4 Pages 31 through 42
Title: “The Past”

In this chapter, Dr. Gershenfeld packs a concise history of computing which is helpful for later discussion of modern technologies which support “personal fabrication”. He opens with the line:
Begin Quotation:
Once upon a time, education, industry, and art were integrated in the work of a village artisan.
End Quotation.

From this opening, he drops back to the Renaissance, and then highlights advances in technology and materials, and human organization to achieve division of labor, and inventions such as the programmable loom. The discussion then moves to the work of Charles Babbage, and later of Herman Hollerith, whose development of punched card machines to help with the United States census led to creation of the International Business Machines Corporation which still exists today. The discussion moves on to the work of Alan Turing in England and of the mathematician John von Neumann in the United States.

Pertinent to the focus of the book “FAB”, Dr. Gershenfeld reports that von Neumann:
Begin Quotation:
...then considered what might happen if computers could manipulate the physical world...
End Quotation.

The discussion moves through computer control of machines for shaping materials, and languages for creating instructions for these computers.

The drop of cost of computing is reflected in development of minicomputers and then microcomputers.

The chapter draws to a close with a return to the sentiment of the opening line, which captures the idea of an individual able to create useful objects in a personal setting.

Begin Quotation:
All of the technologies to personalize fabrication are working in the laboratory...
End Quotation.

While I find inspiration in Dr. Gershenfeld's vision, both in “FAB” and in the later “Designing Reality”, I am not finding a total solution to the challenge of providing for a “civilized” way of living for a community away from Earth, which must provide for itself not only physical objects to perform various functions, but supplies of energy, clean water, nutritious food and a long list of feed stocks such as thread for fabric.

The next chapter is entitled “Hardware”.

(th)
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Re: 20160413 Variations on a theme of Adam Smith

Postby tahanson43206 » Mon Mar 12, 2018 1:42 am

20180310 Adam Smith Thread

From Reference #1:
Page 1028

Because this is the last page of “The Wealth of Nations” (Reference #1) I will change to considering only one sentence at a time, in order to extend as far as possible the benefit of using Mr. Smith's work as a foundation for this thread. The entire page anticipates the coming dissolution of ties between Great Britain and the American colonies.

Begin Quotation:
But if the empire can no longer support the expence (sic) of keeping up this equipage, it ought certainly to lay it down; and if it cannot raise its revenue in proportion to its expence (sic), it ought, at least, to accommodate its expence (sic) to its revenue.
End Quotation.

Mr. Smith's words above

Because this thread is based upon Adam Smith's writings, it is appropriate to comment upon “living” economics as it is unfolding “in real time” today in 2018. The President of the United States has very recently announced a concept to apply import tariff charges of 25 % on steel, and 10% on aluminum. Apparently this was done without consultation with anyone inside the administration or outside of it. The consequence is going to be interesting to watch, regardless of how it turns out, because persons who are knowledgeable of economics and politics are stepping forth to advance arguments on why this is a bad idea.
As of March 13, 2018, the broad brush targets of 25% and 10% are undergoing refinement. The first changes are to exempt Canada and Mexico from the new tariffs, although the exemption is time limited and conditional. Meanwhile, the European Union is preparing a list of retaliatory tariffs they will charge upon US products and services, and China has announced preliminary threats of retaliation.


In an attempt to understand how new technology might help the United States to address the present dilemma, this thread will include discussion of “FAB” by Neil Gershenfeld. “FAB” was published in 2005, and in 2018 Dr. Gershenfeld has teamed with his brothers Alan and John to update “FAB” and to try to see into the future of “Personal Manufacturing”. The new book is entitled “Designing Reality”. It is my intention to flow directly from “FAB” to “Designing Reality”, although influences from the 2018 book may show up in this thread as the discussion at hand may inspire them.

Reference #4 Pages 43 through 51
Title: “Hardware”

In this chapter, Dr. Gershenfeld reviews the “state of the art” of software for controlling machines of various kinds, and points out the costs and limitations of software designed for each machine. He then reports on development of a kind of “universal” software package in India, at a rural village where he was helping to set up a fab lab. The package he developed is designed to interface with any manufacturing tool, by selecting interface software for particular machines. He provides a “Hello World” example using a sign cutter, a laser cutter, a water jet cutter, and a machining center.

Begin Quotation from page 51:
This made it possible to focus on learning how to use the machines together to solve problems, rather than on idiosyncratic ways to apply them separately.
End Quotation.

The next section is entitled “The Present”
(th)
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Re: 20160413 Variations on a theme of Adam Smith

Postby tahanson43206 » Sun Mar 18, 2018 11:26 pm

20180317 Adam Smith Thread

From Reference #1:
Page 1028

Because this is the last page of “The Wealth of Nations” (Reference #1) I will change to considering only one sentence at a time, in order to extend as far as possible the benefit of using Mr. Smith's work as a foundation for this thread. The entire page anticipates the coming dissolution of ties between Great Britain and the American colonies.

Begin Quotation:
If the colonies, notwithstanding their refusal to submit to British taxes, are still to be considered as provinces of the British empire, their defence (sic) in some future war may cost Great Britain as great an expence (sic) as it ever has done in any former war.
End Quotation.

Mr. Smith's words above appear (to me) to be addressed to an audience he imagines are still hoping to maintain a relationship with the American colonies. At the time he was writing, there may well have been a substantial number of British citizens who still hoped something could be worked out to avoid a complete break, and indeed, it was not until several years later that the military establishment threw in the towel. According to Wikipedia (Siege of Yorktown), the Yorktown Surrender occurred in October of 1781.

Because this thread is based upon Adam Smith's writings, it is appropriate to comment upon “living” economics as it is unfolding “in real time” today in 2018. The President of the United States has very recently announced a concept to apply import tariff charges of 25 % on steel, and 10% on aluminum. As of this posting, the new tariffs have been forgiven for Canada and Mexico, and other entities are negotiating to be given similar favored treatment. I was unable to find any confirmation that the new tariffs are in effect as of March 22.

Update: https://www.ajot.com/news/u.s-may-delay ... g-relief-1

The article at the link above reports that the planned implementation date for the new tariffs is March 23, 15 days after the announcement date of March 8th.

In an attempt to understand how new technology might help the United States to address the present dilemma, this thread will include discussion of “FAB” by Neil Gershenfeld. “FAB” was published in 2005, and in 2018 Dr. Gershenfeld has teamed with his brothers Alan and John to update “FAB” and to try to see into the future of “Personal Manufacturing”. The new book is entitled “Designing Reality”. It is my intention to flow directly from “FAB” to “Designing Reality”, although influences from the 2018 book may show up in this thread as the discussion at hand may inspire them.

Reference #4 Pages 55 through 56
Title: “The Present”
Section: Introduction

In the introduction, Dr. Gershenfeld previews the tools tutorials to follow.

Begin quotation from page 56:
The people, projects, and processes portrayed here are a snapshot of what's possible today.
End Quotation.

In “Designing Reality” Dr. Gershenfeld and his brothers update their report of what is possible today, and add a vision of a future in which various objects needed for daily living might be assembled rapidly out of tiny self-assembling parts. In “Fab” the tools are those of 2005.

(th)
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Re: 20160413 Variations on a theme of Adam Smith

Postby tahanson43206 » Sun Mar 25, 2018 11:30 pm

20180324 Adam Smith Thread

From Reference #1:
Page 1028

Because this is the last page of “The Wealth of Nations” (Reference #1) I will change to considering only one sentence at a time, in order to extend as far as possible the benefit of using Mr. Smith's work as a foundation for this thread. The entire page anticipates the coming dissolution of ties between Great Britain and the American colonies.

Begin Quotation:
The rulers of Great Britain have, for more than a century past, amused the people with the imagination that they possessed a great empire on the west side of the Atlantic. This empire, however, has hitherto existed in imagination only.
End Quotation.

Mr. Smith's words above appear (to me) to capture the essence of the grand vision which has come upon individuals and peoples from time to time, and the poignant realization of the first hint the vision might be headed for bankruptcy. Yet, it took another 150 years for the grand vision of an empire headed by Great Britain to expire. Today, in 2018, a family of independent nations whose culture traces directly back to those earlier times carry forward many of the ideas and practices introduced by the British. Thus, the imaginary empire Mr. Smith recognized persists many decades later as a diversified repositories of Western and particularly British culture.
Because this thread is based upon Adam Smith's writings, it is appropriate to comment upon “living” economics as it is unfolding “in real time” today in 2018. The idea of tariffs announced by the President of the United States has resulted in animated discussion and even what is claimed to be an agreement on new trade policies between the United States and South Korea, wherein the South Koreans will admit more American automobiles, and reduce the amount of steel they supply to the United States. Meanwhile, discussions between the United States and China are far from any resolution. The Chinese have made clear that they are ready and willing to impose painful tariffs upon agricultural products from the United States, if necessary.
In an attempt to understand how new technology might help the United States to address the present dilemma, this thread will include discussion of “FAB” by Neil Gershenfeld. “FAB” was published in 2005, and in 2018 Dr. Gershenfeld has teamed with his brothers Alan and John to update “FAB” and to try to see into the future of “Personal Manufacturing”. The new book is entitled “Designing Reality”. It is my intention to flow directly from “FAB” to “Designing Reality”, although influences from the 2018 book may show up in this thread as the discussion at hand may inspire them.

Reference #4 Pages 57 through 59
Title: “The Present”
Section: Birds and Bikes: Irene

Begin quotation from page 57:
Irene Pepperberg is a pioneer in interspecies information technology.
End Quotation.

In this section, Dr. Gershenfeld describes how a student, Ben Resner, used tools and methods for “How to Make...” to develop ways for parrots to control the behavior of a computer using their beaks.

Begin quotation from page 59:
The parrots loved it.
End Quotation.

(th)
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Re: 20160413 Variations on a theme of Adam Smith

Postby tahanson43206 » Sun Apr 01, 2018 11:30 pm

20180331 Adam Smith Thread

From Reference #1:
Page 1028

Because this is the last page of “The Wealth of Nations” (Reference #1) I will change to considering only one sentence at a time, in order to extend as far as possible the benefit of using Mr. Smith's work as a foundation for this thread. The entire page anticipates the coming dissolution of ties between Great Britain and the American colonies.

Begin Quotation:
It has hitherto been, not an empire, but the project of an empire; not a gold mine, but the project of a gold mind; a project which has cost, which continues to cost, and which, if pursued in the same way as it has been hitherto, is likely to cost, immense expence, without being likely to bring any profit; for the effects of the monopoly of the colony trade, it has been shewn, are to the great body of the people, mere loss instead of profit.
End Quotation.

Mr. Smith's words above appear (to me) to convey a sense of the disappointment he (?may?) have been feeling, as the impact of the impending dissolution of the ties between Great Britain and the colonies washed over him and (?perhaps?) his readers.
Because this thread is based upon Adam Smith's writings, it is appropriate to comment upon “living” economics as it is unfolding “in real time” today in 2018. The idea of tariffs announced by the President of the United States has resulted in (more than) animated discussion. The United States and China are far from any resolution. The Chinese have made clear that they are ready and willing to impose painful tariffs upon agricultural products from the United States, if necessary. In response to further belligerence by the President of the United States, the Chairman of the Chinese Communist Party, President Xi, has arranged for his government to prepare to impose a matching additional tariff upon a variety of additional American products. Since the Chinese have chosen products whose reduced sale to China would impose financial burdens upon US producers who support the President of the United States, voices are rising in protest.
In an attempt to understand how new technology might help the United States to address the present dilemma, this thread will include discussion of “FAB” by Neil Gershenfeld. “FAB” was published in 2005, and in 2018 Dr. Gershenfeld has teamed with his brothers Alan and John to update “FAB” and to try to see into the future of “Personal Manufacturing”. The new book is entitled “Designing Reality”. It is my intention to flow directly from “FAB” to “Designing Reality”, although influences from the 2018 book may show up in this thread as the discussion at hand may inspire them.

Reference #4 Pages 60 through 62
Title: “The Present”
Section: Birds and Bikes: Saul

Begin quotation from page 60:
Saul Griffith came to MIT as a grad student from Australia.
End Quotation.

In this section, Dr. Gershenfeld describes how a Mr. Griffith used a waterjet cutter to make parts for bicycles out of sheets of polycarbonate.

Begin quotation from page 60:
Saul's experiments turned into a student-run and -taught course, in which each participant designed and built a custom bicycle.
End Quotation.

(th)
Last edited by tahanson43206 on Mon Apr 09, 2018 3:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 20160413 Variations on a theme of Adam Smith

Postby tahanson43206 » Mon Apr 09, 2018 1:24 am

20180407 Adam Smith Thread

From Reference #1:
Page 1028

Because this is the last page of “The Wealth of Nations” (Reference #1) I will change to considering only one sentence at a time, in order to extend as far as possible the benefit of using Mr. Smith's work as a foundation for this thread. The entire page anticipates the coming dissolution of ties between Great Britain and the American colonies.

Begin Quotation:
It is surely now that our rulers should either realize this golden dream, in which they have been indulging themselves, perhaps, as well as the people; or, that they should awake from it themselves and endeavour to awaken the people. If the project cannot be completed, it ought to be given up.
End Quotation.

Mr. Smith's words above remind me of the entire body of dreams which possessed people and nations of Europe for hundreds of years. The voyage of Ferdinand Magellan (followed in a companion thread) was funded to support the preposterous notion that the Kings of Portugal and Spain would conquer and divide the entire world between them.
1. Because this thread is based upon Adam Smith's writings, it is appropriate to comment upon “living” economics as it is unfolding “in real time” today in 2018. The tariffs announced by the President of the United States have begun to take effect. An article dated April 10, 2018, reports on the unwanted negative effect of the tax on steel imports, upon a manufacturer in Pennsylvania who makes pressure vessels for industrial gases. The manufacturer will be at a distinct disadvantage compared to his Chinese counterpart, because of the tariff differential between imported steel and imported goods.
2. https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/10/busi ... steel.html
In an attempt to understand how new technology might help the United States to address the present dilemma, this thread will include discussion of “FAB” by Neil Gershenfeld. “FAB” was published in 2005, and in 2018 Dr. Gershenfeld has teamed with his brothers Alan and John to update “FAB” and to try to see into the future of “Personal Manufacturing”. The new book is entitled “Designing Reality”. It is my intention to flow directly from “FAB” to “Designing Reality”, although influences from the 2018 book may show up in this thread as the discussion at hand may inspire them.

Reference #4 Pages 62 through 64
Title: “The Present”
Section: Birds and Bikes: Alan

Begin quotation from page 60:
Among the people who got hooked on rapid prototyping after seeing one of these bicycles was Alan Alda.
End Quotation.

In this section, Dr. Gershenfeld describes how a Mr. Alda used a waterjet cutter to make parts for a periscope for the flash bulb on a camera, to eliminate “red eye”, which is caused by the flash of light reflecting back from the eyes of a subject.

Begin quotation from page 64:
...we changed the design to have an adjustable mirror angle, and this time it worked beautifully.
End Quotation.

(th)
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Re: 20160413 Variations on a theme of Adam Smith

Postby tahanson43206 » Mon Apr 16, 2018 2:29 am

20180414 Adam Smith Thread

From Reference #1:
Page 1028

Because this is the last page of “The Wealth of Nations” (Reference #1) I will change to considering only one sentence at a time, in order to extend as far as possible the benefit of using Mr. Smith's work as a foundation for this thread. The entire page anticipates the coming dissolution of ties between Great Britain and the American colonies.

Begin Quotation:
If any of the provinces of the British empire cannot be made to contribute towards the support of the whole empire, it is surely time that Great Britain should free herself from the expence of defending those provinces in time of war, and of supporting any part of their civil or military establishments in time of peace, and endeavour to accommodate her future views and designs to the real mediocrity of her circumstances.
End Quotation.

And thus ends “The Wealth of Nations”. As noted in earlier posts, it took a full century and more for Great Britain to accept the outcome of World War II, and to release the greater part of her holdings. However, little pockets of the former empire remain scattered around the World, in the form of islands such as the Falklands.

Begin quotation from http://www.falklands.gov.fk
The UN Charter enshrines the right of all people to determine their own future, a principal known as self-determination.
....(text not included)...
In exercising this right, the people of the Falkland Islands have decided to retain their status as an Overseas Territory of the UK.
End Quotation.

I was somewhat taken aback to come upon a claim that Mr. Smith's famous pin factory was imaginary, but that claim appears to have some basis in fact, since the description of the factory may have been derived from work done by a French author.


Because this thread is based upon Adam Smith's writings, it is appropriate to comment upon “living” economics as it is unfolding “in real time” today in 2018. The saga of tariffs continues but most of the news I have seen recently seems to be expressions of worry about how tariffs would affect various individuals and groups. An article published by https://thefederalist.com showed up in the news feed, so I'm planning to consider it next week. The title is: “Why Free Trade, Not Tariffs, Actually Increases American Jobs”


In an attempt to understand how new technology might help the United States to address the present dilemma, this thread will include discussion of “FAB” by Neil Gershenfeld. “FAB” was published in 2005, and in 2018 Dr. Gershenfeld has teamed with his brothers Alan and John to update “FAB” and to try to see into the future of “Personal Manufacturing”. The new book is entitled “Designing Reality”. It is my intention to flow directly from “FAB” to “Designing Reality”, although influences from the 2018 book may show up in this thread as the discussion at hand may inspire them.

Reference #4 Pages 64 through 65
Title: “The Present”
Section: Birds and Bikes: Grace and Eli

Begin quotation from page 65:
...they're growing up thinking of engineering as something they can do for themselves rather than expecting others to take care of if for them. And in believing that, they're teaching me about the profound opportunity and demand for tools of mass construction for all of the people on the planet who can't go to MIT
End Quotation.

(th)
May every member of The Knowledge forum grow financially, intellectually, socially and beyond.
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