Foresight Update 23.36: Ultrafast computers based on nanoplasmonics - September 10, 2009
Recent advances in nanoplasmonics, h/t arXiv blog:
From Open Source Sensing:
If you were an alien from an advanced civilization who had been stranded on Earth, but had all your people's knowledge on a thumb drive, how would you go about creating nanotech and building up Earth's technology to the level you could rejoin your galactic civilization?
If you actually knew the details, probably one of the most direct pathways that's accessible by our current technology would be to build a whole set of custom proteins that would bootstrap the molecular machinery…
If you wonder how soon we will have walking robots, remember that the technology underlying the Segway was developed for a stair-climbing wheelchair…
Here at Foresight our main focus is on longer-term technologies such as molecular manufacturing, but we keep an eye on what's arriving along the nearer-term pathways as well. In 2007 I attended a workshop on "Nanotechnology for Chemical and Biological Defense" and the proceedings volume of that meeting, with the same name, is now available…
There's an interesting piece up at the IEEE robotics blog, by Alfred Nordmann, with the subtitle "The story of the Singularity is sweeping, dramatic, simple—and wrong." He argues that far from accelerating, technological progress is slowing down…
Yesterday I took issue with Alfred Nordmann's IEEE post in which he claimed that technological progress was slowing down instead of accelerating. I claimed instead that it was being distorted by the needs of the next rungs of the Maslow hierarchy, and that a huge portion of society's energy was going into something that no one had predicted: giving the Eloi the illusion that they are doing something that matters. Just for fun, let's give this theory a name: ESP, for Eloi Save the Planet…
The blogosphere (and science news-cliposphere) is all agog aver the discovery of magnetic monopoles, from Nature to Slashdot. Nanowerk Physicsworld. What's happened is the publication of some papers and preprints about observation and measurement of monopoles in spin ices, particularly in the complex crystal structures of compounds such as Ho2Ti2O7 and Dy2Ti2O7 at cryogenic temperatures…
SENS4 is going on in Cambridge, England.
Last week I posted an essay in which I claimed that the Singularity could be said to be halfway here already because we had already set up a huge program that was more or less running the world (and that it was fast becoming a computer program). …
Oddly enough, widely regarded IT commentator Bruce Webster has just posted an essay pointing out the similarity between law and software…
From Open Source Sensing:
A new book Nanotechnology for Chemical and Biological Defense, ed. Margaret Kosal (Springer, 2009), includes sensor scenarios for nanotech-based defense against chemical and biological attacks. As is usual with scenario planning, multiple versions are presented, in this case reaching out to the year 2030. Here's one from the "Radical Game Changers" scenario…
…For scientific purposes, sharing the raw data (in addition to any interesting conclusions) is the way to go. In sensing situations where there are privacy concerns … an open source design process might involve not sharing all the raw data…
—Open Source Sensing posts by Christine Peterson
Advancements in technologies such as nanotech, robotics, and biotech are promising to make major differences in our lives in the not-too-distant future, as the Industrial Revolution did to the agrarian world — to do for the physical world what the computer and Internet have done to the world of information.
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The Singularity Summit 2009
The Singularity Institute will host the Singularity Summit 2009, in New York October 3-4. The Summit is a gathering of thinkers to explore the rising impact of science and technology on society, and in particular to further the understanding of a controversial idea — the singularity scenario.
Converging Technologies for 21st Century Security
Organised crime, terrorism, civil conflict, and natural disasters are sadly commonplace in global society and have developed increasingly complex dimensions. To counter such threats, civil security and emergency response teams are looking towards new technologies that offer more sensitive, rapid, and accurate detection methods; that provide the means to neutralise or effectively deal with the outcomes of such incidents; and that provide greater protection to personnel.
NanoManufacturing Conference & Exhibits
Call for Speakers, Abstract deadline: October 7, 2009
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