Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Put to better use

Photo: University of Michigan Mechanica

Every now and then a new kind of technology comes along that makes me think we are just the shit. Our brains must be so big it amazes me we can stand upright. In the animal kingdom, you'd want to be us, right? Because there's nothing, nothing we can't do with our opposable thumbs and our massive frontal lobes.

So the good folk at the University of Michigan have corralled their gargantuan brains and come up with these nano images of Obama; oh yes you knew it was coming: Nanobamas.

Not being a scientist I can't make much sense of the technology, so let me just give you some key words and leave you to make of it what you will: 150 million, carbon nanotubes, tens of thousands of times smaller, something about a human hair, something else about garden variety micro dots, microscopes, and lots of teeny tiny 3D Obamas.

Nano thingies are actually pretty cool. They're being used for important things like developing new ways of diagnosing and treating disease, building new types of batteries and creating faster computers.

Obama thingies are also pretty cool. They're developing new ways of running an economy, building new types of empathy and creating faster Republican back-pedalling.

So we're all feeling generally good about nanotechnology and Obama. Says the head of the research team at the U of Mich who created the nanobamas: "I feel demonstrations like this have great value in communicating science and technology to broader audiences."

Says I: I don't care for demonstrations, use your nanotechnology to build me some new vital organs! Find a cure for AIDS! Do something about cancer! Use nanobots to build wells for starving children!

I think technology should be used for good instead of, well, demonstrations. Just imagine what a nano-econo-bot could have done with the US.

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