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Table of Contents

Preface xiii About the Author xix Chapter 1 Convergence at the Nanoscale 1 The Meaning of "Nano" 1 Nanotechnology and Scientific Progress 4 Technological Convergence 9 Application Areas 15 Radical Transformations 17 The Plan of This Book 19 References 22 Chapter 2 Visions and Illusions 25 Imagination and Impossibility 25 Birds Can't Fly to the Moon 26 Cold Facts 28 Science Fiction 29 Drexler's Vision 35 Alchemy at the Nanoscale 42 Nanopanic 44 Conclusion 46 References 47 Chapter 3 Information Technology 51 Moore's Law 51 Sensors 58 Quantum Computing 60 The Information Technology Research Initiative 63 Grand Information Technology Challenges 68 Conclusion 74 References 76 Chapter 4 Biotechnology 81 Nanotechnology from the Perspective of Biology 81 Nano-Bio Convergence 83 The Problem of Cancer 87 Paths to Nano-Bio Innovation 89 Agriculture and the Environment 92 Evolutionary Methods: Computing and Culture 95 Improving Human Performance 103 Conclusion 106 References 107 Chapter 5 Cognitive Technology 113 The Two Faces of Cognitive Science 113 Cognitive Convergence 117 The Prehistory of Cognitive Technologies 124 Neurotechnology 128 The Communicator 133 Conclusion 136 References 137 Chapter 6 Unification of Science 143 Creating Convergers 143 Eight Principles for Convergence 149 Conservation 150 Indecision 151 Configuration 152 Interaction 153 Variation 153 Evolution 154 Information 155 Cognition 155 Ethical Principles 156 Social Relations 159 Behavioral Social Science 163 Conclusion 168 References 169 Chapter 7 Unity in Diversity 175 Critics of Convergence 175 Looking Forward 180 Family and Reproduction 181 Culture and Personality 183 Societal Institutions 186 Science, Health, and Environment 188 How Will the World Be Governed? 189 A New Science of Services 195 Conclusion 200 References 201 Chapter 8 The Final Frontier 207 The Giant Leap 207 The Realities of Interplanetary Travel 211 The Solar System 215 Personality Transfer 222 What Is to Be Done? 228 Conclusion 231 References 232 Index 239

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Nanoconvergence is the unification of all significant technologies on the basis of understanding and control of structures at the nanoscale. It combines nanotechnology with biotechnology, information technology, and new emerging technologies based on cognitive science. This trend is sometimes called "NBIC" from the major Nano-Bio-Info-Cogno fields that are in the process of unifying. This book is written for a non-technical audience, and to appeal to students and professionals in each of the previously separate fields that are now converging. It will offer new visions of future possibilities and present challenges, based on extensive experience in the government-supported scientific initiatives that are achieving the unification of science and the convergence of the most transformative technologies.

About the Author

William Sims Bainbridge is one of the leading scientists exploring and popularizing the emerging field of nanoconvergence. He is the author of seventeen books and more than 200 articles in areas ranging from information science to the sociology of religion. He has been at the National Science Foundation since 1992, and currently codirects its program in Human-Centered Computing. He holds a Ph.D. from Harvard University.

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