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WHAT'S A NANITE

(MICROSCOPIC MACINES)

Image by HalGatewood.com

OVERVIEW

A long time ago (1957) in a lab not so far away (Caltech), scientists (Feynman & Hibbs) imagined atomic-scale robots, or nanites. Today, scientists and engineers are just beginning the nanite revolution.

Image by Sharon McCutcheon

APPLICATIONS

Nanites can and will be able to do anything of the following: repair DNA, stabilize insulin, mend stress fractures in airplane wings, sustainably mine ore from the earth, clean up oil spills, and so very much more. Even more interesting is the idea that nanites can self-replicate, which would mean that they could do their jobs indefinitely.

Image by Roland Larsson

ENERGY

Another challenge for nanites is how to control them. That is where AI comes in. Without an intelligent system to control the nanites, then they wouldn't be very useful.

Image by Joakim Honkasalo

AI CONTROL

Nanites on their own are extremely limited in application without something intelligent to control them. That's where artificial intelligence comes in to save the day. With AI controlled micro-machines, nearly anything is possible.

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DANGER! DANGER!

The downside of having AI control nanites is that the AI could become self-aware and decide to use nanites against humans. While it might seem like bad science fiction, some very intelligent people currently predict that this combination might someday lead to our extinction.

Image by Yohann Lc

THE DREAM

What would you risk to live forever with clothes that never wear out, teeth that didn't need brushing, pets that didn't die, and so much more? This dream is a powerful motivator.