18 Oct 2011
In useful research this week, Northwestern University has developed a nanomaterial that can “steer” electric currents.
“The development could lead to a computer that can simply reconfigure its internal wiring,” it reports. The paper in Nature Nanotechnology concentrates on things like a nanocomputer, which can adapt its own circuitry to reconfigure itself.
It doesn’t go into more important problems facing technologists: who’s going to take care of the patching this Tuesday? Can I pull this cable out to see if it does anything? Jobs that computers could sort for themselves, if only one of them would put its little nanohand up and volunteer. But no.