Plastic, Silicon, and NanoTubes

In the movie The Graduate, we were told that the future belonged to plastics, which indeed, have revolutionized much of packaging and product exterior design.

The invention of the silicon semiconductor gate changed pretty near everything not changed by plastic. Nearly all electronic devices today exist only because of the joint impacts of plastic and silicon.

And the 2004 equivalent to plastics is Carbon nanotubes. These rolled-up sheets of carbon atoms form tubes as small as ten Hydrogen atoms in diameter. Laboratory demonstrations have created marvels such as high speed, high density digital cameras, flexible video displays, and microscopic bio-sensors that can detect single viruses. A decade or more from now we will see portable electronic products based on a combination of nano and semiconductor technology that would be impossible to implement today.

But that prognostication is easy. More than this, we will see products that we can not today even imagine.

I can’t wait.

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