Unbounding the Future:
the Nanotechnology Revolution
It's impossible to give a complete bibliography
of nanotechnology-related publications here. The following books,
papers, and articles will lead readers into some of the relevant
literatures; a more complete list is available from the Foresight Institute (address in Afterword).
Papers and Articles
DeGrado, William F., Zelda R. Wasserman, and
James D. Lear, "Protein Design, a Minimalist Approach."
Science 243 (1989) 622-28. Describes successful work in
Drexler, K. Eric. "Molecular Engineering: An
Approach of the Development of General Capabilities for Molecular
Manipulation." Proceedings of the National Academy
of Sciences (USA) 78 (1981) 5275-78. First description of
flexible molecular manufacturing based on artificial molecular
Drexler, K. Eric, and John S. Foster.
"Synthetic tips." Nature 343 (1990) 600.
Proposes an approach to building a molecular manipulator.
Drexler, K. Eric. "Molecular Tip Arrays fir
AFM Imaging and Nanofabrication." Journal of Vacuum
Science and Technology B. April 1991 (in press). An
alternative approach to the goals described in "Synthetic
Tips" aimed at sidestepping several technical problems and
improving performance and flexibility.
Feynman, Richard. "There's Plenty
of Room at the Bottom," a talk published in shorter form
as "The Wonders that Await a Micro-microscope." Saturday
Review 43 (April 2, 1960) 45-47; reproduced at greater
length under its original title in Miniaturization ed.
H. D. Gilbert New York: Reinhold, 1961. The visionary talk
sketches top-down miniaturization to the microscale, and points
clearly in the direction of nanotechnology.
Foster, J. S., J. E. Frommer, and P. C. Arnett.
"Molecular Manipulation Using a Tunneling Microscope," Nature
331 (1988) 324-26. Describes the first use of an STM for
bounding molecules to a large object.
Huse, William D.et al., "Generation of a
Large Combinatorial Library of the Immunoglobulin Repertoire in
Phage Lambda." Science 246 (1989) 1275-81.
Describes a method for generating protein molecules that bind
other specific proteins by selecting from a large number of
antibody fragments, without using mammalian cells.
Lehn, Jean-Marie. "Supramolecular Chemistry
- Scope and Perspectives: Molecules, Supermolecules and Molecular
devices." Angewandte Chemie International Edition in
English 27 (1988) 89-112. Describes work in molecular
recognition (Lehn's Nobel lecture).
Ponder, Jay W., and Frederic M. Richards.
"Tertiary Templates for Proteins." Journal of
Molecular Biology 193 (1987) 775-91. Describes
computer-based methods for choosing amino-acid sequences
compatible with a given folded structure.
Alberts, Bruce, et al. Molecular Biology of
the Cell, 2nd ed. New York: Garland Publishing, 1989.
Describes natural molecular machinery.
Burkert, Ulrich, and Norma L. Allinger. Molecular
Mechanics, ACS Monograph 177 Washington, D.C.: American
Chemical Society, 1982. The classic text on modeling molecules in
mechanical terms, based on relationships between energy and
Clark, Tim. A Handbook of Computational
Chemistry, New York: Wiley-Interscience, 1985. Describes the
use of computer-based classical and (especially quantum
mechanical models of molecules.
Crandall, B. C., and James Lewis, eds. Proceedings
of the First Foresight Conference on Nanotechnology (working
title). Cambridge, Mass.: MIT press, scheduled for the late 1991.
Creighton, Thomas E. Proteins. New York:
W. H. Freeman, 1984. An excellent introduction to proteins as
Drexler, K. Eric. Molecular Nanotechnology:
Molecular Machines and Manufacturing (working title, book in
progress as of 1991). Presents the physical principles of
molecular machinery, with an analysis of a basic set of devices.
Published in 1992 as Nanosystems: Molecular
Machinery, Manufacturing, and Computation. Reviews
and ordering information.
Huberman, B. A. ed. The Ecology of
Computation. Amsterdam: North-Holland/Elsevier Science
Publishers, 1988. This collection includes three
papers by Miller and Drexler presenting a market-based approach
to organizing large-scale computation.
Maskill, Howard. The Physical Basis of
Organic Chemistry. Oxford, Eng.: Oxford University Press,
1985. This is an unusual, useful textbook describing the
chemistry of carbon-based molecules from the perspective of
Rigby, Maurice, et al. The Forces Between
Molecules. Oxford, Eng.: Clarendon Press, 1986. A good
overview of its subject.
Finally, for those who object to attempt to
explain nanotechnology to the public at this early stage, see the
book How Superstition Won and Science Lost by John C.
Burnham (New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers, 1987). It describes how
scientists have abdicated their responsibility in this area, and
some of the consequences.
Audio and video tapes are available from the First Foresight
Conference on Nanotechnology held in Palo Alto, California,
in October 1989. Contact the Foresight Institute, P.O. Box 61058,
Palo Alto, CA, 94306; telephone (415) 325-2490.
Description of current research projects in the
Exploratory Research for Advanced Technology program (ERATO) are
available from: Research Development Corporation of Japan, 5-2,
Nagata-cho 2-chome, Chiyoda-ku, Tokio 100, Japan; fax
See also the nontechnical Further Reading
section, and especially the Foresight Institute publications.
Major advances in the enabling sciences are often published in
the journals Science and Nature, both of which
are worth browsing every week.