Sunday, April 01, 2007

The ABC's of Converging Technologies (otherwise known as NBIC)

N is for Nanoscience and nanotechnology (manipulation of matter on an atomic scale)
is for Biotechnology and biomedicine, including genetic engineering and transgenics
I is for Information technology, including computing and communications
C is for Cognitive science, including cognitive neuroscience, neurotechnology, and psychopharmaceuticals.

Put them all together and what do you get? The NBIC rubric from the National Science Foundation, which is studying the above converging technologies for the purpose of enhancing human performance. One example of converging nano-info is 'smart dust', which gathers information surreptitiously, and can be sent to sense tumour cells. Another example is the ‘lifelog’, a digital diary of everything and individual does. In nano-bio, there are implantable computers that send feedback on body function (including neural activities). A nano-bio-cogno convergence gives us the brain pacemaker, a neuroprosthetic device for restoring brain performance, and extending this to nano-bio-info-cogno, the full NBIC, produces neural interfaces for enhancing memory and the senses, and human technogenics (cyborgs).

My friend and colleague, Greg Wolbring, does a fantastic job of anticipating, monitoring, and contemplating what this all means at his blog Innovations Watch: The Choice is Yours. A sample of his entries:

I've bookmarked this page -- it is a 'must have' if you want to keep on top of the latest in converging technologies. And if you're interested in hearing about Augmented Cognition your can watch the video from the Spotless mind conference that we had blogged about earlier.


Kathryn Hinsch said...

Thanks - this is fascinating and an important area to keep an eye on - lots of political implications which I am sure will be the subject of future blogs.

evden eve nakliyat said...

hi my name is muhtfe very nice informations and very nice blog thank you very much...