Friday, June 25, 2004

NanoFuture vs. NanoNow

Daniel Moore, a budding young nanoscientist at Georgia Tech, has an excellent commentary on his blog regarding molecular manufacturing theory and the nanotech he's engaged in every day.

    "MAYBE I just don't spend enough time around business and government leaders talking nano. Maybe I just spend way to much time at scientific conferences and talking with researchers about nanotechnology and the sciences behind it. Because (though I do I appreciate the PR that must be waged so that "nano" isn't treated with abject disgust the way that, say, something like "diesel" or "nuclear" is) we aren't quite at the level where we are considering whether it is useful to have autonomous self-replicators. Many of the researchers in the field simply don't think that it has been shown to even be possible on a significant scale (by this I mean, outside of very specific controlled environments - like the human body or other biological spaces). Many of us read the article by Richard Smalley in Scientific American and saw a very good argument on Smalley's side, saying just this thing. But, though this may help the PR game that is being played, it doesn't do much to help those of us in the field doing research. It's all great to talk about molecular manufacturing and nanofactory but we're still trying to figure out how to make only metallic (or semi-conducting) nanotubes." More here.

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