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Better batteries and semiconductors

New Scientist is reporting that Altair Technologies has a new Lithium ion battery that uses lithium titanate nanocrystals to significantly decrease the recharge time (to minutes) and significantly increases the number of recharge cycles the battery can tolerate.

On top of this Science Daily is reporting that Georgia Tech scientists are using probabilistic bits (PBITs) to construct probablistic transistors (PCMOS) which use 100 times less power than conventional transistors.

The combination of these two approaches would yield a laptop that could probably last a week without recharging (which is great for long conferences) and wouldn't need a new battery every 6-12 months.

9 Responses to “Better batteries and semiconductors”

  1. Chemisor Says:

    I can just see the jokes

    I can just see the new "Probabalistic Pentium" jokes.

    "What's 2 + 2?"
    "3 +/- 2 with 20% probability."
    "Close enough for non-technical people…"

  2. Anonymous Coward Says:

    Nanotech and Boxing

    Hey chemisor how are ya doin? question for you- How do you think nanotech can help sports like boxing? I was thinking that nanomachines could weave fullerene and alloy structures into our bones and such, and give us super-flexible cartilage, and healing nanites, and more.

  3. Kadamose Says:

    Re:Nanotech and Boxing

    I realize that your comment was most likely sarcastic – but I'll bite anyway.

    You do realize that once nanotech and genetically enhanced humans come out into the public eye, that the current barbarianism we know as sports (i.e. football, soccer, baseball, tennis, swimming, boxing, and basically anything that's in the olympics) won't exist anymore. I mean, what would be the point?

    Of course, they're going to try and make the same laws that currently ban any user of steroids or any other stimulant to compete – but, it's not going to work. It's going to be the end of 20th century sports…and I say, good riddance.

  4. Chemisor Says:

    Re:Nanotech and Boxing

    > How do you think nanotech can help sports like boxing?

    It depends on what you call "nanotech". If you are with those unbelievers who say we don't need nanobots, only nanofactories, then the best you can expect is better boxing gloves. You would need at least some autonomy and a great deal of assembly capabilities in a machine that can do anything inside your body.

    With real nanobots, your dreams are a bit small. Why bother "weaving fullerene into our bones" when you can just replace the entire body with non-living constructs? Make bones from CNT fiber, muscles from bulk contractile matter, polymer skin. Why bother with living cells at all?

    Biology is vulnerable to death, waste accumulation, parasites, bleeding, infection, pain, and other inconvenient things. All the while requiring complex chemical regulators and various internal organs to take care of all those cells. It would be much better to just upload into a simulated brain in an entirely synthetic body that can be designed for efficiency. A staggering efficiency, achievable once you ditch all that evolution baggage that we no longer need anyway.

    What would sports mean to people like that? Probably not much, since your abilities would not change through effort, but rather through redesign. You wouldn't have to run ten miles every day to keep your lungs in working order, or lift weights to become stronger. You could live in a space habitat without worrying about bone loss. You could fly around in vacuum without a space suit. You could live on the ocean floor and not die from the pressure. In other words, do all those things our current squishy bags of mostly water don't let us do.

  5. Anonymous Coward Says:

    Sounds significant

    This sounds significant, and that is saying something. Developments in the battery world are few and far between. Todays batteries are only slightly more advanced than the lead acid batteries of 30 years ago.

    • Cost — about the same
    • Capacity — some are maybe twice a big
    • Charge time — no real change
    • Charge cycles — about the same

    Calculator for Currency Rate Exchange

  6. scythe Says:


    better, longer lasting batteries????? ^_^ the game playing may never have to stop now…

  7. RobertBradbury Says:

    Re:Nanotech and Boxing

    Think a little…

    It will move to a sport like horse racing where the better you get the more "handicapped" they make you.

    I can hear the announcers now… "Say Bill, do you think with that 2 tons of lead that the running back is carrying he'll be able to make it more than 10 yards?"

  8. Kadamose Says:

    Re:Nanotech and Boxing

    You think a little…

    That won't happen. As I said, 20th century sports aren't going to exist for much longer. That doesn't mean, however, that new ones won't be created.

    Sports in the future are going to rely mainly on intellect, and not physical capabilities.

    Keep in mind there will NO money system during this time…so these sports will be purely recreational.

  9. Chemisor Says:

    Re:Nanotech and Boxing

    > the better you get the more "handicapped" they make you.

    I doubt it. If "sports" persist, they would probably be more like car races are today. The better car wins, through better engineering, and marginally through better driving skills. However, I would hesitate to call it a "sport".

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