X-Message-Number: 5251
Date: Thu, 23 Nov 1995 22:13:43 -0800
From: John K Clark <>
Subject: SCI.CRYONICS Nanotechnology


On Tue, 21 Nov 1995 In sci.cryonics  Brad Templeton Wrote:

                >When it comes to computers, nano could do a lot, but we 

                >already have a "nano" of sorts, in that we make our systems
                                >out of very small components without requiring 

If you are talking about integrated circuits, the smallest
components now made, you're talking about micrometers. If you're
talking about nanotechnology you're talking about nanometers,
that's a thousand times smaller in linear dimension, components
would have a BILLION times less volume. Things are even more
dramatic if you talk about life, brain cells are BIG, you have
to start using millimeters.         

Small size isn't the only advantage nano would have over life. 
Nerve impulses in the brain might reach a top speed of about 100 meters 
per second if the axons have a thick myelin sheath around them. 
The chemical signals the brain  also uses are very low bandwidth chemical 
and far, far, slower. Light moves at 300,000,000 meters per second. 

           >But the nano required to build powerful superfast computers is
                      >actually a lot easier for me to comprehend in terms of 
           >possibility than generally mobile, self-replicating, 
           >molecular-operating nano.

If nature could come up with it's version of nano, life, using
only the crude tools of random mutation and natural selection,
I don't see why we can't do better and in a lot less time than
4 billion years. We have two things evolution did not have,
foresight and reason.

                                             John K Clark     

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