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Nanotechnology is the science of designing and building machines at the molecular and atomic levels. Dr. Hall — a leading researcher on the frontiers of nanotechnology who has designed for NASA — describes nanotechnology in a very accessible way, so that anyone can understand what it’s about, what it could do, and what it can’t do. He puts it into historical context, explaining how previous technological developments have affected us, how nanotechnology fits into the historical trends for technologies ranging from motors to medicine, and how the continuation of these trends, with nanotechnology as a strong determining factor, will have a profound impact on the future.
Together with its sister science of biotechnology, nanotechnology has the potential to alter the very human race, change who we are. Can this possibly be good? Should it be encouraged or opposed? No one knows for sure, but the basis for informed thought can be found in these exciting, stimulating pages, which will open the doors of the future to you.
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J. Storrs Hall, Ph.D. (Laporte, PA), is Chief Scientist of Nanorex, Inc. and a Fellow of the Molecular Engineering Research Institute. He served as a Computer Systems Architect at the Laboratory for Computer Science Research at Rutgers University from 1985 to 1997. He is the author of the "Nanotechnologies" section for The Macmillan Encyclopedia of Energy, among many scientific articles, and has been cited in numerous books.From Publishers Weekly:
Nanotechnology has become a hot topic in recent years, but few laypeople understand what it is. Hall writes that nanotechnology "involves building machines whose parts are of molecular size, but more importantly, of atomic precision...." He foresees nanotechnology progressing through five stages of development, stage one being our current ability to image objects at an atomic scale with a limited ability to manipulate them, and stage five being the ability of miniature robots to reproduce and learn from experience. A fellow of the Molecular Engineering Research Institute in Palo Alto, Calif., Hall devotes a chapter to his own concept, "Utility Fog," a fog composed of nanoparticles that will coalesce to form sofas, coffee tables and maybe even artificial plants, and then disintegrate back into fog. More realistic predictions include thin body suits that will control body temperature, allowing people to live in the tropics or in the Arctic and medical advances that will send artificial antibodies into the bloodstream to destroy bacteria or viruses. Hall admits that civilization could face many dangers as nanotechnology advances, but he argues that banning its development in the U.S. would only result in other countries or groups gaining technological dominance. Readers excited by the promises of nanotechnology will find this book a gripping read. (May)
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