We here at WorldChanging are great fans of foresight. The idea of actually thinking through the implications of emerging trends, technologies, and whatnot fills us with heady glee. When the possibilities are simultaneously distant and world-changing (ahem), foresight is all the more important. It gives us all a chance to consider options, prepare for challenges, and attempt to generate a bit of wisdom without having to go through more painful experiences first.
Which is all to say that I'm very happy to note the activities of the Center for Responsible Nanotechnology. A combination research team, advocacy group, and news source, CRN focuses on the ethical, legal, and social implications of molecular nanotechnology. They approach the issue with a bias that nanotechnology has the potential to do very good things for humanity, and thus research and development should continue -- but, because of the dangers inherent to the technology, such R&D should be done responsibly and carefully.