Foresight Update 37

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A publication of the Foresight Institute

Foresight Update 37 - Table of Contents | Page1 | Page2 | Page3 | Page4 | Page5


Thank You

Foresight Credits and Kudos

As Foresight ramps up, the fraction of those deserving thanks who get mentioned in this little column is decreasing. Eventually we will have to have a whole website for this. Meanwhile, here is just a short, partial list of those who made a big difference this quarter:

The biggest event this quarter was our 1999 Group Genius Weekend, the annual gathering of Senior Associates. Dozens of volunteers made this possible, but here I'll just mention those who started the Group Genius project: Matt and Gail Taylor, who donated the event and facility to Foresight, and persuaded their own staff to work for free on this project.

Thanks go to Ralph Merkle for his two years on the Foresight Board of Directors; he now moves to the Board of Advisors while spouse Carol Shaw takes up the title of CIO (Chief Information Officer) for Foresight. Since, as an educational organization, all we do is provide information, Carol is central to our work, and we regularly thank our lucky stars that we have her on the team.

Stepping up as a new member of the Board of Directors is Glenn H. Reynolds, law professor at University of Tennessee. He will also be acting Secretary-Treasurer, on a temporary basis, while we look for a longer-term officer for this position. Glenn is a long-term friend of our organizations — even before they were officially founded, when we knew him through the space movement — and he co-wrote the first law review article on nanotechnology back in 1994.

Also coming on board on a longer-term basis is Update Editor Richard Terra, formerly guest editor. Foresight is lucky to have a professional writer/editor for this key spot.

This year's conference chairs are perhaps the most active team we've ever had: Deepak Srivastava and Jan Hoh. Expect an excellent technical conference this October.

Thanks to our quarterly fundraising party hosts: Doug Engelbart, and Judy and Mark Muhlestein. About 80 donors gathered to fete Carver Mead of Caltech, who won the 1999 Lemelson-MIT Award.

For sending information, thanks go to: Will Cooper, John Faith, Donald Fears, Dave Forrest, Stan Hutchings, Rob Jellinghaus, Dick Karpinski, Tom Mazanec, John McPherson, Vik Olliver, Lew Phelps, Chris Phoenix, Gregor Purdy, Mark Reiff, David Saber, Jim Von Ehr, Brian Wang.

Chris Peterson is Executive Director of Foresight Institute

Foresight Update 37 - Table of Contents


Upcoming Events

TEX-MEMS: Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS), August 23, 1999, Texas A&M University. Organized by researchers in Texas A&M's Dwight Look College of Engineering, the one-day TEX-MEMS conference will focus on Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems (MEMS). Engineers and scientists from Texas and surrounding states will gather. Conference organizers hope this will be the first in a continuing series of meetings that will rotate to different locations around Texas every six months. Web:

Foresight Weekend—Fall 1999 Senior Associates Gathering, September 17-19, 1999, Hotel Sofitel, San Francisco Bay. Change is coming faster every month now — nanotechnology, open source, ubiquitous surveillance, mammalian cloning, bizarre intellectual property laws, smart drugs — all mixed with a big dose of media hype. How to cope? We invite you to trade ideas with some allies — individuals who can examine these prospects without undergoing mental shutdown. Contact Foresight, tel 650-917-1122, fax 650-917-1123, email,

Third European Symposium of the Protein Society, September 19-22, 1999, Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany. Topics include protein dynamics, rational protein engineering, evolutionary protein engineering, single molecule analysis and manipulation, protein folding machines, membrane fusion machinery, molecular motors. Meeting Office 9650 Rockville Pike, Bethesda, MD 20814-3998, USA. Telephone: 301-530-7010; Fax: 301-530-7014. E-mail:; Web:

EUROMAT 99čEuropean Congress on Advanced Materials and Processes, in Conjunction with the Exhibition MATERIALICA, 27-30 September, 1999. ICM - International Congress Centre, Munich, Germany. Includes session on nano- and microtechnology ( For conference information:

scope1: information vs. meaning, Sept. 30-Oct. 1, 1999 in Vienna, Austria. A conference on information technology and the future of knowledge that asks what radically innovative tools and strategies for acquiring knowledge will emerge. Includes a talk by Foresight Advisor Dr. Ralph C. Merkle on "Nanotechnology and Meaning." For information, contact AHR Congress Services, Mariannengasse 32, A -1090 Vienna, Austria. Phone: ++43-1-402 7755-0; fax: ++43-1-402 8052. E-mail:; Web:

Seventh Foresight Conference on Molecular Nanotechnology, October 15-17, 1999 at the Westin Hotel in Santa Clara, CA. An intensive Tutorial on Foundations of Nanotechnology will be held on October 14. Enabling science and technology, computational models. Contact Foresight, tel 650-917-1122, fax 650-917-1123, email, Web:

American Vacuum Society 46th International Symposium, October 25 - 29, 1999 at Washington State Convention Center, Seattle, Washington. Includes nanometer-scale science and technology, emerging opportunities and issues in nanotubes and nanoelectronics, the science of micro-electro-mechanical systems, and organic electronic materials. Web:

The Surgery Room of the 21st Century, November 1-2, 1999, The Moat House Hotel, Glasgow. Sponsored by the Institute of Nanotechnology. The theme of the conference is taken from the Royal Academy of Engineering's publication: 'Medical Engineering - A Field With Potential'. Contact: Further information:

The Diagnostic Centre of the 21st Century, November 3-4, 1999, The Moat House Hotel, Glasgow. Sponsored by the Institute of Nanotechnology. The theme of the conference is taken from the Royal Academy of Engineering's publication: 'Medical Engineering - A Field With Potential'. Contact: Further information:

IBC's 6th Annual Biochip Technologies Conference Presents Chips to Hits '99, Harnessing the Power of Microtechnology, November 2-5, 1999, The Claremont Resort & Spa, Berkeley, CA. "The Pharmaceutical and Biotech Industry's Leading Forum on Microarray and Microfluidic Technologies" Telephone: (508) 481-6400; Fax: (508) 481-7911; Email:; Web:

Evolution: The 1999 Beckman Symposium Dedicated to Susumu Ohno, Saturday November 6, 1999, 8:00 a.m. -6:00 p.m. Platt Conference Center Beckman Research Institute, City of Hope, 1450 E. Duarte Rd., Duarte, California, 91010. Talks range from biological evolution to digital evolution. For further information regarding the Symposium, or to request registration materials: Sharyn Webb, Event Coordinator, Phone: (626) 256-8735; email: Web:

IECON '99, the 25th annual conference of the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society, November 29th - December 3rd, 1999, Fairmont Hotel, San Jose, CA, USA. This year's IECON focuses on integration of factory automation, power electronics, robotics, signal processing with information technology to form a seamless, integrated, networked enterprise environment - the Totally Networked Industry Environment. Papers are also being solicited in the areas of emerging technologies, factory automation, power electronics, mechatronics, and signal processing and control. Bill Joy, co-founder of Sun Microsystems and a co-inventor of Jini, will be the keynote speaker. Web:

Cambridge Healthtech Institute's 2nd Biannual Bioengineering of Nanostructures for Biomedical and Biotechnical Applications (formerly Titled Microsystems Technology), December 1-3, 1999, Omni Parker House Hotel, Boston, Massachusetts. Session topics include: microscale manipulation, DNA nanotechnology, viral hijacking, emerging biomaterials, microfabrication in tissue engineering, neural microengineering, drug delivery, diagnostics/biosensors. Contact: Mary Ann Brown, Conference Director, Cambridge Healthtech Institute, Fax: 617-630-1325, e-mail: Web:

MSM 2000, the Third International Conference on Modeling and Simulation of Microsystems, March 27-29, 2000, US Grant hotel, San Diego, California, U.S.A. An interdisciplinary integrative forum on modeling, simulation and scientific computing in the microelectronic, semiconductor, sensors, materials and biotechnology fields. Contact: MSM 2000, 4847 Hopyard Road Suite 4-381, Pleasanton, CA 94588. PH: (925) 847 9152; FAX:(925) 847 9153. E-mail: Web:

The Fourth Alcor Conference on Life Extension Technologies, June 17-18, 2000, Asilomar Conference Grounds near Carmel, California, just 15 minutes from the Monterey Peninsula Airport. This conference will cover topics relevant to the expansion of human health and longevity, drawing from such fields as: biological and medical technologies, nanotechnology and nanomedicine, artificial intelligence, psychiatric aspects, defining death, and the insights of authors and artists. Foresight Chairman Dr. K. Eric Drexler and Foresight Advisor Dr. Ralph C. Merkle will talk. Web:

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From Foresight Update 37, originally published 30 July 1999.