October 02, 2003

The Only Book I Ever Read

...online. All of it. Scrolling page after page down the computer screen. I was living alone on the edge of the world, sequestered in a cabin on the rim of the Blue Ridge, just me and the cat. This online book-- once I started, I couldn't 'put it down'... to borrow from an old-fashioned (and frankly, more pleasurable) way to read a book.

The book: Engines of Creation by Eric Drexler. Written in 1986, I read it in 1997 and have never been able to hear the word "nanotechnology" without seeing Drexlers tiny engines making more tiny engines making useful stuff out of raw feeds of atomic parts.... the most wonderful and terrible creative tools man has ever known (well, not yet, but-- as we've mentioned recently-- it's just a matter of time.) His ideas of Molecular Nanotechnology persist unrealized but increasingly possible. Still, more immediate less futuristic applications of 'nano' are finding applications every day. Some of these new technologies are intrusive, invasive, or "disruptive" as this MD in "Yale Medicine" describes them. Ever heard of "smart dust"? You will. If nanotechnology doesn't interest you, it should. It will change your world. For the better? Perhaps.

Posted by fred1st at October 2, 2003 07:11 AM | TrackBack
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