When I heard about the synthetic production of a sustaining and sustainable DNA generated "form", put a veritable quiver up my multi-millenium, carefully crafted, Darwin-Tested mammalian vertebrae - truly scary indeed.
I love and am honestly in awe at this science, and really convinced that these developments are astounding, but what I also want is our scientists and politicians and financial investors place more of their own awareness's prior to this Genie spreading throughout our societies. Or is it, even now, too late?
I'll answer your question (sadly) with another question.
When has mankind ever put a genie back in the bottle?
In my view your concerns are justified in many ways. Not least in the ethical questions that will have to be answered. We may still be a long way off from having self replicating biological computers but it's now only a long way off.
i'm even more of a pessimist that bob - we've come a very long way in a very short time, and we've done it very, very fast, and we don't seem to be slowing down very much as we come to the crest, not knowing if there's even a road on the other side of it.....
Crest? What crest? We're just moving up the lower slopes. Of course one might debate whether new life has been created, since they have actually only modified an existing form (substantial mod, I agree). Yet to get life to begin from a soup of chemicals.
What is even better is that our brains have been doing this for a very, very long time. Makes it seem that the programming for this robot is really discovery of how our minds "do the math" intuitively. It was almost like watching an infant learning to crawl or walk, but with an amazing capacity to learn autonomously in minutes. I for one don't see how that could be just a random event.