Nope, it’s not a low budget film with half dressed vixens fighting cyborgs from the future. It’s a project that IBM and Caltech researchers say will significantly improve microchips in 2010.
Researchers form Caltech have been learning how to fold microscopic strands of DNA into different shapes over the last few years. Turns out, this really weird hobby has turned out to be quite useful.
By using DNA folded into triangles, IBM has been able to place them as anchor points along the silicon wafer used in microchips. Each micro component can now be placed only 6 nanometers apart as opposed to 45 nanometers apart.
Is it possible that we will see more merging of organic DNA into computer technologies? Absolutely. Especially since our current computing technology could not handle the trillions of complex calculations computed in one human body in one day.
IBM isn’t the only company looking to us old fashioned humanoids for inspiration; a group of researchers based in Europe is also getting in on the action with their anthropomimetic robots.
In past years, robots have been made to look human, very human. But, if you were to take a hatchet to it the insides would look like your PC. Anthropomimetic robots mark a symbolic turn from just mimicking the appearance of a human on the outside to recreating the internal structure as well.
Researchers are using a skeleton made of thermoplastic polymer, actuators that correspond to each muscle and kiteline as tendons. They hope to be able to create the actual fluid movement of humans.
Maybe you don’t need your DNA disruptor just yet, but who knows; in the near future your laptop may need a reminder of whose top dog.