After a society creates artificial intelligence, nanomachines become far more than simply computer-controlled microscopic machines. Many argue that nanites become microscopic life forms, and that nanocolonies are hive minds, with the nanites behaving in much the same way as insects. This raises the issue of whether or not nanites can be controlled, especially if their programming can be overcome by their artificial intelligence. In some cases, nanolife takes on an agenda of its own, and it is often in these circumstances that catastrophic turns of events bring entire civilizations down. Additionally, moral questions are raised when the creation of new nanotechnology mirrors the creation of new life, and doubly so for the termination or destruction of nanocolonies.

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