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"The more conventional aspect of science and technology on the nanometer (nm) scale is seen in advancing observation and precision standards down to the atomic level and in continued miniaturization from today's microtechnology to tomorrow's nanotechnology. There is lots of room at the bottom of the scale, even now, 35 years after R. Feynman's famous lecture on reducing the size of computers until bits are of the size of atoms. A more adventurous approach to the nanoworld is the assembly-scenario, where molecules and macromolecules serve as building blocks to form complex functional units.Dr. Rohrer's presentation was centered around the physical possibilities based on current technical capabilities and highly probable trends. In the 45-minute talk, he discussed the continuing trend in microminiaturization and "new possibilities and paradigms." He suggested that the end of microminiaturization possibilities is in sight (at the kT boundary) but that industry will not allow progress to cease"we need something to replace microminiaturization." He gave the worldwide energy consumption cost for computer storage alone ($700B/yr) as an example of the economic forces driving the need to make things smaller. He envisions a time in the near future when we can store 300 gigabits/cm2.
Miniaturization and assembly together should provide possibilities and new ways of solving problems, namely, the elegant way nature solves them. Crucial will be our ability to handle nano-objects on an individual basis and to interface them to the macroscopic world for communication and control."
The crit.org server has occasionally had intermittent problems. If it is temporarily unavailable, try: http://discuss.foresight.org/M1/nph-med.cgiSince then, Terry Stanley has coded up a version of LinkMap, a graphical display for both the links and backlinks in the document, enabling the reader to get an overview of a connected set of documents, rather than hopping from page to page with no picture of the context. LinkMap will be accessed through a button in the mediator program.
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