Foresight Nanotech Institute Logo
Image of nano
Home > Resources > Publications > Foresight Publications > Weekly News Digest

Citizen Science: Gamers beat scientists to protein structure

Foresight Update 24.10—October 7, 2011
ISSN 1078-9731

Foresight Positions Open: Ops and Office Manager
Inspired by emerging technologies? Local? Responsible, organized, meticulous about detail? Come help us try to change the world.

Discuss these news stories at http://foresight.org/nanodot.

In this issue:

Foresight Events
Foreseeing Future Technologies - Join Foresight
Events
Contact Foresight

Nanotechnology using designed peptides to build supramolecular structures on surfaces

The use of proteins to build artificial supramolecular nanostructures has advanced with the development by a team at the University of Pennsylvania of a computational method to design peptides that will self-organize into specific supramolecular structures on a given surface. …

Nanotechnology for heart repair advances

In a major advance for the application of nanotechnology and tissue engineering to repair hearts suffering severe damage from a heart attack or coronary artery disease, gold nanowires added during the preparation of a tissue patch produced better, more functional heart patches. …

Engineered bacteria provide new tool for nanotechnology protein design

Early in the evolution of thinking about protein engineering as a path toward advanced nanotechnology and molecular manufacturing, it was suggested that the road to designing proteins that would fold predictably would be made easier if it were possible to incorporate into proteins amino acids other than the twenty that naturally occur in biological systems. Early efforts were largely limited to chemically synthesized peptides. Efforts to trick biological systems into incorporating unnatural amino acid were limited to an occasional replacement. Now researchers at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies have succeeded in creating bacteria that efficiently incorporate unnatural amino acids into proteins at multiple sites. …

New electron diffraction method for nanotechnology determines nanostrucutres in days instead of years

An important component of progress in designing and making molecular machines and other nanostructures is a quick way to see the structures that have been produced. With quick feedback, rapid cycles of design-fabricate-test-redesign can be implemented. X-ray crystallography is the gold standard method of obtaining atomically precise structures from materials that can be prepared as micrometer scale crystals and larger. Now an international research collaboration centered in Germany has developed a method of automated electron diffraction tomography to give atomically precise information about nanostructures. …

"Nano Techno" rap song lures kids to learn about nanotech

Over at Wired.com: A New York Hall of Science staffer has made a rap video to introduce kids (and probably quite a few adults) to the basics of nanotech. The refrain will help them remember the definition of a nanometer, and the Foresight message comes through: "But with great power comes great responsibility!" …

Gamers, citizen science, and protein structures (Video link)

From the beginning, protein design has played a key role in proposals for developing advanced nanotechnology, or molecular manufacturing … Designing proteins and predicting protein structure from sequence are both very difficult problems of immense importance to both biotechnologists and nanotechnologists. One novel approach is an online game called Foldit. Foldit players work to predict the structure of protein molecules of unknown structure and have now succeeded where scientists have failed. …

Mechanical force splits molecule that cannot otherwise be split

A major feature of advanced nanotechnology will be precise mechanical control of how molecules and molecular fragments react, thus forming a desired product and eliminating the possible occurrence of unwanted side reactions. … scientists have now demonstrated that mechanical force, in this case pulling caused by ultrasound, can cause unique reactions that cannot be made to occur using non-specific means such as heat and light. …

Report on Fourth Conference on Artificial General Intelligence published

H+ Magazine has a report by Ben Goertzel on the Fourth Conference on Artificial General Intelligence …

Electric motor made from a single molecule (video)

Recent research progress with synthetic molecular machines continues with a news release from Tufts University reporting "World's smallest electric motor made from a single molecule" …

—Nanodot posts by James Lewis and Christine Peterson

Foresight Events – Lectures

Panel: Tour of the Human Condition-Life
January 19, 2012
Palo Alto, California

Christine Peterson will be a panelist for the "Life" panel of "An Interdisciplinary Tour of the Human Condition in Three Stages: Time, Life, and Mind".

Foreseeing Future Technologies

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.

Since 1986, the Foresight Institute has been in the forefront of a worldwide community of visionaries who work to help shape these possibilities into a positive, beneficial reality. If you would like to help us understand the potential of these technologies, and influence their direction, please consider becoming a member of the Foresight community. With your support, Foresight will continue to educate the general public on these technologies and what they will mean to our society.

To join:
http://foresight.org/members/index.html

Events

Media Partner Events

Singularity Summit 2011
October 15-16, 2011
New York City, New York

The Singularity Summit 2011 will be a TED-style two-day event at the historic 92nd Street Y in New York City. The Summit will explore "big picture" questions such as the direction of the global economy, philosophy of mind, and the ethics of technological development.

Upcoming Events

Molecules, Movement, and Motors
October 14 2011
Cambridge, Massachusetts

The symposium will bring together experts in genetics, chemistry, biology, physics, medicine, and engineering to discuss the mechanics of motors—from naturally occurring motors, such as those inside cells, to new synthetic motors made from DNA.

Second Open Science Summit
October 22-23, 2011
Mountain View, California

The Open Science Summit brings together researchers, life science industry professionals, students, patients and other stakeholders to discuss the future of collaborative science and innovation.
Use the code "4sight" for $100 off.

IPAS 2012
February 12-15 2012
Chamonix, France

The aim of the Sixth International Precision Assembly Seminar is to discuss the rapidly evolving field of micro-assembly, including the development of microfactories and microsystem fabrication.

Contact Foresight

Foresight Update is emailed monthly to 10,000 individuals in more than 125 countries. Foresight Institute is a member-supported organization. We offer membership levels appropriate to meet the needs and interests of individuals and companies. To find out more about membership, follow this link:
http://foresight.org/members/index.html

To join:
https://www.foresight.org/d/donate

Past issues: http://www.foresight.org/publications/weekly.html
Earlier issues are here.

Foresight Institute
PO Box 61058
Palo Alto, CA 94306 USA
tel +1 650 289.0860
fax +1 650.289.0863
foresight@foresight.org

If you were forwarded this email from a friend and would like to subscribe yourself, please follow this link and sign up for our free electronic membership.

Thank you!

Donate Now

Home Page

Resources

Foresight Programs

Join Now

 

Home About Foresight Blog News & Events Roadmap About Nanotechnology Resources Facebook Contact Privacy Policy

Foresight materials on the Web are ©1986–2014 Foresight Institute. All rights reserved. Legal Notices.

Web site development by Netconcepts. Email marketing by gravityMail. Maintained by James B. Lewis Enterprises.