Sunday, March 16, 2008

Legos Writ Large

Infrastructure, the most difficult thing to achieve when promising basic research has to be scaled to work in the real world in order to solve real world problems (hydrogen/fuel cell cars anyone?), may finally be tamed (at least in medicine) according to an excellent article posted in Science Daily "The new ‘Modular Process Automation Laboratory m:Pal’ platform makes it possible to plan complex laboratory equipment faster and more efficiently. It comes as a construction kit in which pumps, incubators, dosing devices and camera modules can be slotted together in any way desired and tried out immediately – in much the same way as Lego bricks."

Design for manufacture is the mantra voiced by all who build complex things. With the emergence of nanotech combined with robotics and ai, this vision may come to fruition in ways impossible to achieve by conventional means.

To read an absolutely prescient book on how the emergence of radical tech can change everything, check out The Deus Machine by Pierre Ouellette as this work will blow your mind. Written in 1993, the predictions made, including economic collapse in the 'aughts, will astound you.

Enjoy.
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