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The Future Needs Us!

February 3, 2003

Freeman Dyson has written a libertarian response to Michael Crichton’s novel Prey and Bill Joy’s advice to relinquish research in genetics, nanotechnology, and robotics.

Dyson is Professor of Physics Emeritus at the School of Natural Sciences of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton.

From Nanotechnology’s Sidelines, One More Warning

February 3, 2003

Tiny whiskers make huge memory storage

February 3, 2003

New, tiny magnetic sensors could help break a technical barrier to ushering in the next generation of computer disk storage capacity.

The sensors, filaments of nickel thinner than a wavelength of visible light, are capable of detecting extremely weak magnetic fields using a phenomenon called “ballistic magnetoresistance.”

The sensors also could be used to detect biomolecules.

Random chat solves distributed problem

January 31, 2003

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute researchers have developed a scheme to solve a fundamental difficulty with distributed grid computing: coordinating the efforts of all computers.

The simple solution avoids the need to have a global supervisor, which would introduce scaling problems. Each individual computer makes occasional checks with randomly-chosen others, to ensure it is properly synchronized. The result is a self-stabilising effect on the system as a whole; processors that are… read more

New technology boom forecast

January 31, 2003

The availability of the Internet, coupled with a plethora of new ideas, dramatic increases in computer memory and artificial intelligence, will create a huge technology stimulus by the end of 2005, according to Ian Pearson, a senior analyst with British Telecom. This will be further enabled by the introduction of the semantic Web on the Internet in 2005 and expected improvement in the economy.

‘Battle for supremacy between man and machine’ unfolds, Kasparov says

January 30, 2003

The ultimate mind game is being played out here and, to believe participants, the future of human civilization hangs in the balance….

Light Particles Are Duplicated More Than a Mile Away Along Fiber

January 30, 2003

Scientists have taken particles of light, destroyed them and then resurrected copies more than a mile away. Previous experiments in “quantum teleportation” moved particles of light about a yard.

Possible uses include sending unbreakable encrypted messages and as fiber-optics repeaters.

10.20GHz Intel Nehalem slated for 2005

January 29, 2003

Intel is reportedly planning 10.20GHz desktop CPUs code-named “Nehalem” by 2005.

Intel is also planning the 5.20GHz “Prescott” core and the 9.20GHz “Tejas” core by then.

Human Music Interface finds its ‘fingers’

January 29, 2003

Polyphonic HMI has developed a music recommendation system, the “Human Music Interface,” that uses AI to analyse the fundamental patterns and elements of music, rapidly determining an individual’s musical tastes so that further music can be recommended to them. The recommendations are linked to music samples enabling consumers to test the results.

Eddie Mars, Cybermouthpiece, Talks to His Creator

January 26, 2003

In his new film, “Happy Here and Now,” Michael Almereyda looks into the future and sees computer chat rooms where participants can project fictitious identities, or “avatars,” into cyberspace to do their talking for them.

Kurzweil responds to Edge challenge, advises Bush

January 26, 2003

As described in The New York Times, John Brockman, a literary agent and publisher of, asked leading scientists, writers and futurists to imagine that they had been nominated as White House science adviser and that President Bush had sought their answer to “What are the pressing scientific issues for the nation and the world, and what is your advice on how I can begin to… read more

Molecular dots rise for information storage

January 24, 2003

Researchers have made a new molecular device that could store up to 100 gigabits of data per square inch, using molecules called “rotaxanes.”

Getting a Closer Look at the Eye

January 24, 2003

Adaptive optics, originally developed for astronomy (using mirrors to eliminate the visual distortion caused by the earth’s atmosphere), is being used by ophthalmologists to see to see individual cells in the retina.
It is being combined with optical coherence tomography, which allows doctors to capture images deep inside tissue.

Nanotechnology: the potential for new WMD

January 23, 2003

The possibility exists for the production of new types of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) using nanotechnology, including fourth-generation nuclear weapons, conventional weapons in large quantities using self-replication, and biological weapons.

This Is Your Business, Virtually

January 23, 2003

The video-conferencing room at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York now allows for virtual meetings on a new 4-foot-by-16-foot high-definition rear-projection screen, with 200 milliseconds latency.

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