The Heritage Foundation portrays itself as a conservative think tank, and by gosh, they are! Specifically, they are conservative on the longer term prospects for nanotechnology:
In the more distant future, combining nanocomputers, sensors, and nanomechanical architectures into one system would make possible autonomously targeted and guided projectiles, such as bullets and rockets. Nanotechnology could also improve communications and information processing, whether on the battlefield or with the Oval Office, through microscopic computers, switches, lasers, mirrors, detectors, and other optical and electrical devices.
True enough, but quite an understatement. Other parts of their new nanotech paper are hard to argue with, at least by us:
Congress needs to promote policies that continue to bring the best and the brightest in nanotechnology to study and work in the United States. Current visa policies are making it increasingly difficult to recruit students and scientists and to hold scientific conferences in the United States.
The nation’s security and competitiveness relies heavily on people’s ability to travel to the United States, but the current visa system is unnecessarily challenging, depriving the United States of many of the world’s best and brightest scientists, students, and entrepreneurs. Long wait times for personal interviews are among the most frequently cited factors that make travel to the United States difficult.
Quite right. —Christine