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Foresight Update 23.37: Graphitic memories could revolutionize circuit design - September 17, 2009

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Top News of the Week

Lithographic Graphitic Memories

"HPC Wire reports that advances by the Rice University lab of James Tour have brought graphite's potential as a mass data storage medium a step closer to reality and created the potential for reprogrammable gate arrays that could bring about a revolution in integrated circuit logic design." (H/T Sander Olson) (H/T Brian Wang)

In this issue:

Foreseeing Future Technologies - Join Foresight
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Harder than diamond?

A nice article in New Scientist about the search for substances harder than diamond. This is important for nanomechanical engineering because hardness translates into properties useful in machine parts at the nanoscale…

Singularity or Bust — update

In Singularity or Bust I discussed the work of econophysicist Didier Sornette et al in using oscillating hyperexponentials to predict the collapse of Chinese equity markets. They have a new paper out which tells a bit more about how they predict the point of collapse…

Nanoscale Wear

One of the major problems for micromachines, much less nanomachines, is wear. The phenomenon of stiction combines the two worst aspects of surface-to-surface interaction — a high coefficient of friction and a locally-generated high applied force — to cause enormous problems…

One way of reducing friction at the macroscale is vibration, as in this vibratory parts feeder. Now nanotechnologists at IBM have harnessed vibration to reduce wear at the nanoscale…

Terrorism and advanced technology

…Rob Freitas and I once did a back-of-the-envelope calculation that a fully-developed molecular manufacturing capability could rebuild the entire infrastructure of the US in somewhere between 1 and 2 weeks. If you have that kind of productive capacity available, you can stand lots of shocks with equanimity. If the twin towers had that kind of productive technology built in for active maintenance, repair, and expansion, they'd still be standing…

Norman Borlaug, R.I.P: The Man Who Saved More Human Lives Than Any Other Has Died

From Reason Magazine:
"Norman Borlaug, the man who saved more human lives than anyone else in history, has died at age 95. Borlaug was the Father of the Green Revolution, the dramatic improvement in agricultural productivity that swept the globe in the 1960s. For spearheading this achievement, he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1970."

Robots: Our Future or Our End?

I (and others) get interviewed by Minnesota Public Radio (podcast) about machine ethics…

—Nanodot posts by J. Storrs Hall

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.

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The Singularity Summit 2009
Devoted to the better understanding of increasing intelligence and accelerating change
October 3, 2009
New York, NY USA

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
Organized by the Institute of Nanotechnology
November 25, 2009
The Royal College of Physicians, London, UK

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
Looking to understand what nanotechnology means for you?
April 14-15, 2010
Hilton Phoenix East/Mesa, Mesa AZ USA

Call for Speakers, Abstract deadline: October 7, 2009

This conference will highlight the current, near-term, and future applications of nanotechnology and how they are transforming the way we manufacture products. Peer networking, information sharing, and technology exchange among the world's nanomanufacturing leaders will be a key feature of the event.

Contact Foresight

The Foresight Institute Weekly News Digest has merged with Foresight Update and is emailed every week to 15,000 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:

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If you would like to browse past issues of Foresight Update and the News Digest, follow this link: Older issues of Foresight Update published from 1987 through spring of 2007 are archived here.

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