Cathedral and the Bazaar updated

from the recursive-revisions dept.
A Wired article Landmark Linux Tome Updatedreports that a revised and expanded edition of Eric Raymond's book, The Cathedral and the Bazaar: Musings on Linux and Open Source by an Accidental Revolutionary has been released. "The new edition includes chapters detailing open source developments in 1999 and 2000, and new essays that address the economics of open source and the potentials of open source as a competitive weapon." The revisions were based on an open source model of incorporating "good patches, constructive criticism." It's available in paperback and hardback from O'Reilly Publishing.

It looks like the updated content isn't yet available in the web version of The Cathedral and the Bazaar."

David Deutsch and quantum constructor theory

from the putting-the-multiverse-to-work dept.

David Coutts writes "David Deutsch, founder of the quantum computer field, believes that quantum computers will work by drawing upon the processing power of the multiverse. His book "The Fabric Of Reality" is a great read. Deutsch is working on a theoretical framework to prove whether or not quantum computers can be built. He calls this the 'quantum constructor theory'." Deutsch also hopes that his theory would answer questions about nanotechnology. In this interview, "It's a much bigger thing than it looks," posted last November on the Third Culture section of The Edge, he explains some of his ideas.

CNN on Hong Kong Nanotech

from the gearing-up-for-applications dept.

Michael Mehrle writes "CNN has this articleabout how recent advances in nano technology could be used in consumer appliances (CRTs, Hard drives, etc) as soon as next year. It's nice to see some nanotech applications that could be seen in the real world sooner than the '5-10' year range." Sachin Karol also wrote in about the article, and it was discussed in a Slashdot article on Nanotech of the Nearly-Now. This is the same Hong Kong University of Science and Technology research mentioned inan earlier Nanodot article

NEMS history and challenges

from the take-it-from-the-top-down dept.
Waldemar Perez writes "This is one of the most interesting articles I have found on NEMS. It was published in Physics World magazine and talks about some early NEMS working prototypes and the challenges facing NEMS.

Self-healing, Evolving Space Probes

from the space-creatures-are-coming dept.
Waldemar Perez pointed out a New Scientist article on space scientists developing reprogrammable electronics using genetic algorithms. "Electronics engineers are giving birth to a new species of space probes that will adapt to harsh environments, heal themselves and even evolve into better, smarter machines." Read more for the rest of an excerpt from the article introduction.

Sandia makes a tinier robot

from the better-batteries-needed dept.
Waldemar Perez writes "Are we making progress in robotics or what? This robot developed by Sandia National Labs is even smaller than MIT's nanowalker presented in MIT's Nanotechnology conference last September. The machine weighs less than an ounce and occupies a 1/4 inch cubic space. Powered by three watch batteries, it rides on track wheels and consists of an 8K ROM processor, temperature sensor, and two motors that drive the wheels. Enhancements being considered include a miniature camera, microphone, communication device, and chemical micro-sensor."

Asian industries serious about nanotech

from the atoms-are-everywhere dept.
The latest Far Eastern Economic Review (January 18 cover date) has a well done article Designer Molecules: It's Time to Think Small by Charles Bickers on Asian companies seriously developing applications of nanotextured materials, nanotubes and other nano-scale technology. The article is also a good reality check for anyone inclined to think that the US (or any other nation) will be able to monopolize the technology.

Holography with atoms

from the try-to-catch-this-wave dept.
John Pierce writes " An article (.pdf, see 3rd page) in The Industrial Physicist (October 2000) describes 3-Dimensional Holographic constructions of atoms 'beamed' directly onto a surface. Controllable interference patterns between beams of atoms are produced by modulating the charge differences within a diffraction grating. Atoms are deposited in predetermined locations over the entire field in parallel. This technique will eventually allow fast atomic level 3-D assembly, without physically handling each atom.

It would seem this is a major advance over recent molecular "ink jet" printing, and shows how quickly atomic and molecular handling techniques are progressing."

Cheap 3D printers for the home

from the shape-of-things-to-come dept.
WillWare writes "Eugene Leitl posted this story by New Scientist to the nsg-d list, regarding recent advances in stereolithography and other 3D printing techniques, particularly the innovation of printing multiple materials in the same session. Some tantalizing quotes from the article:

Geometric complexity is largely irrelevant… You can design the internal and external geometry of a part, and its electrical, mechanical and thermal properties exactly how you want them to be.

Dickens says he knows of a number of companies who are looking at mass-producing 3D printersfor less than £1000 apiece… They could be available within a couple of years if one of the companies decided to go for it.

At the current exchange rate, £1000 is $1440. It is quite likely that such printers will be very popular. If large numbers of people buy one, much of what we normally imagine as the nanotech post-scarcity economy will appear overnight. 3D printers will offer an early preview of some of the important challenges of nanotech.

The intellectual property issues involved will be essentially identical to those of nanotechnology. Toy companies (and others previously engaged in manufacturing) will fight against the AutoCAD-file version of Napster. The status of patents and other mechanisms of IP protection will come under scrutiny.

There will doubtless be circulating CAD files for guns, knives, and other dangerous trinkets, and an associated rash of urban legends (recall Monty Python's "spring surprise"). This will provoke thought and discussion which will later pertain to military and terrorist applications of nanotechnology.

It's a good thing to see these issues come into the public eye in a context far less dangerous than nanotech. The task of public education will then require only the elucidation of what differentiates nanotechnology from 3D printer technology."

Private Lunar Mission to Land Robots, Return Samples

from the Sony-Aibo-was-not-considered dept.
redbird pointed out a story about a privately-funded project to retrieve lunar samples with robots supplied by Los Alamos roboticist Mark Tilden. "[Applied Space Resources] plans to launch [the Lunar Retriever mission] into low Earth orbit and then moonward using former Soviet technologies," possibly including decommissioned tactical missiles.

Following the conclusion of the Retriever phase of the mission, Tilden wants to use his robots to clear a lunar beachhead of ultra-fine dust, which poses a threat to delicate machines. "By the time the mini-Sisyphi die four years after landing from prolonged exposure to gamma radiation, theyíll have cleared a figure eight-shaped, four million square yard (four square kilometer) area… Tilden hopes to follow those colonizers with cheap, wheeled kindred robots that assemble themselves in reconfigurable solar arrays. A final wave of compulsive wirers and cable-layers would then provide the plug for subsequent landers looking to juice up."

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