Tuesday, June 14, 2011
thought for the day/ high technology
Back to high technology . . . before Nuremberg eggs, boats and architecture was the high technology and I suppose various weaponry like catapolts. Just think of when scientific developments occured. Galileo and his swinging pendulum goes to the clock. But, chemistry and electricity didn't come around till the 1800s(there was alchemy, but that was science using vague notions of evil spirts therefore, something; there was the use of astrology; but, the astrology was not based on anything more than the motions of planets througg the zodiacal constellations).
There was the water powered industrialism of the Barbegal grain mills fed by miles of aqueducts. Point here is that the manufacturing technologies, places often out of the way of the majority of people that were the high technology centers. This water powered technology started again in the first Renaissance after the translations from Arab spain of Greek knowledge.
I think I found a good example here.
I probably should have posted about high technology before posting about hydro-electric dams; but, here we go.
Here's a nuclear fusion torrus,
- Despite most peoples idea of overcoming the previous technological base of humanity(fossil fuels) by means of either space solar power or nuclear fusion(or even fission if we don't figure out fusion; as far as I can tell, each different competing nuclear fusion idea has made their breakthroughs; it's all engineering and money to put humanity on a nuclear fusion basis right now), but it seems that there will be another high technology development that will generalize life really(not quite as dynamical as life). This is nanotechnology. The primary essence of this technology is that it is a manufacturing technology. But, it is so efficient, that it can create a sum net total of energy; it's products can be so efficient, the 'nanotechnologies' can be self powered or even powered by the movements of the people using them.
- Nanotechnologists have feared that nanotechnology can be developed in five years; and once developed, the technology can do a two week revolution. This hasn't happened. Seems to me that it won't happen quite like that. But, just over the past month or so, there's been so many breakthroughs that can help speed the development of nanomanufacturing that I've been too tired to make a post like this! There's been more than one way to speed the modeling and predicting of how amino-acids fold into proteints; if they can do this, then the biotech route to nanomanufacturing is well in hand. They've been making great advances in dna-nanotech; dna can be used as a scaffold to attach say proteins that can do some kind of mechanical functioning; either some machine took like a gear, or a axle, or be an enzyme to do atom by atom assembly . . . ; But, there's been some other pathways to nanomanufacturing breakthroughs as well!
Scanning tunnelling microscopes,
The scanning tunneling microscope is a true quantum technology just like the electron microscope and the laser(so are radios and radars actually!). The Scanning tunneling microscope takes data from a tip that is scanning across the surface and reconstructs by computer algorithms the data. The thing about this tip is that it uses quantum tunneling of electrons between the surface and the tip!(hence confirming quantum mechanics; another remarkable confirming of the frontiers of physics is the CERN Large Hadron Collider; to calibrate this like twenty plus kilometer particle accellerator, they confirmed all the quantum electrodynamics and electro-weak theory . . . in like 1983 and 4, the unification theory connecting the electromagnetic force with the weak nuclear force was confirmed at CERN . . . in like months!). The electric affects of this quantum tunneling of electrons is done by piezo-electronics; solid materials that change shape to electric charge. The images below the macroscale level stm(full of vacuum tubes!) are of atoms arranged in all kinds of patterns to do all kinds of physics experiments. I mean they've been imaging atoms since like the late 1970s!
- The Stm is one pathway generally being performed by Zyvex. They reported arranging fifty atoms a second last year; the keynote speaker of the upcoming 'foresight institute' conference is to be the Zyvex founder; seems he has some big news to announce!
I think I'll finish by showing some youtubes of major nanotech pathways of dna-nanotech and graphene nanotech.
I think I'll post some old Paul Rothmund youtubes which gives good overviews of the dna-nanotech pathway to nanomanufacturing.
here's another longer version
The bio-pathways and non-biopathways(such as stms and others like nanotubes) keep going back and forth in taking the lead on whether they can or when who's going to make even primitive nanomanufacturing happen first. This following graphene pathway may have put the another hat in the ring so to speak!
I should end this by pointing out that almost on a weekly basis, quantum computer advances are announced. Nanomanufacturing can do to all the technologies we know of like energy, aircraft, automobiles, spacecraft, medical, what sizing down did for computers. In the end, it can make whatever is conceptually/mathematically possible. But, quantum computers can break open the quantum world. Nanomanufacturing can make for computing and artificial intelligence that can make technological development that would make the twentieth century seem like what the stone age was to the twentieth century. Quantum computers can solve problems and open up quantum technologies that are beyond nanotechnology. In the 1990s, there were mathematical breakthroughs suggesing wormholes are technologically possible(i've seen reports of physicists who have bottled up negative matter that is needed for wormholes to be stable; of course, in vary low quantitites); quantum computers would probably compute them; teleportation(yes, as in star trek) was proven in the 1990s. Quantum computers would probably go a long way towards making those possible on a macroscale.
Quantum physicists have shown that it is possible to do some really wild technologies in the future using quantum dots(solar power of like 90% efficiencies is like one little possible application) can make for alternative chemistries. Quantum computers would help compute those with comparable ease.
Bottom line, it's looking like nanomanufacturing is going to start happening within five years. A few years after that, they'll probably be able to speed the development of quantum computers. The rate of science and technological development would have already startled the anti-science religions of the world. But, then the quantum computers will hit their stride. The next ten years is going to see the possibility of life as long as people want to live, the space frontier will be a piece of cake; the anti-science heads will uncork, and well, i'll probably be a happy man finally.
- Oh yes, I forgot another remarkable general technology - chaotic dynamcis controls. Chaotic dynamics is a kind of stabilized(by means of negative feedback loops) instability(positive feedback loops). We've already seen some application of chaotic dynamics controls - electron microscopes. One of the big quantum technologies latelly has been a kind of coupling of photons with electrons. These plasmons have applications to actual cloaking devices(yes, again star trekkish technologies; they've just recently announced after rapidly succeeding in cloaking other than visible wavelengths, 'a' visible wavelength; but, only a vary narrow wavelength), but also 'perfect lenses.' Electron microscoples and microscopes in general could not see actual atoms; now, because of these quantum technologies, they can make perfect lenses and they've been seeing atoms with electron microscopes; they've made movies of atoms thermo-gittering; they even done some self-assembly of buckyballs with these new high-tech electron microscopes.
- I got carried away. What i really wanted to point out is that scientific instruments are one of the underrated 'high tech' nologies after things like manufacturing technologies(which are often using some kind of scientific instruments).
I'm thinking certainly of particle accellerators, telescopes, and electron microscopes, also stms, but here's where it all meets - clean rooms.
I suppose I don't know the most advanced cleanrooms. They're advancing yearly. They cost billions of dollars(zyvex likes to point out how while the cleanrooms get more expensive to make tinier and tinier computer chips; they're nanomanufacturing system gets cheaper and cheaper); i've heard of nanotechnology cleanrooms that not only make for dust free, but electrostatic free, vibration dampers . . . all manner of damming up nature;
Nanomanufacturing will make nuclar fusion(some of the breakthroughs to making fusion practical use chaotic dynamics controls) obsolete, but also all these cleanrooms!