:: blog ::

Catoms and You

This came in from Indi…who knows the power of making reallyreally small atoms into bigbig ideas…

3D You 
(02/07) Vol. 20, No. 2, P. 26;

Researchers at Intel and Carnegie Mellon University are working to bridge the chasm between science fiction and science fact with the development of “dynamic physical renderings,” or 3D holograms that have texture, weight, and mass. The project took root with CMU computer scientists Todd Mowry and Seth Goldstein’s vision of remote, 3D representations of people that could be used for telepresence applications; these representations would be constructed from claytronics atoms (catoms). [note…no wikipedia page on catoms exists…if you know anything about these weird things, please start one.]

The research team is hoping to roll out a 3D fax machine in a few years that would capture and replicate any arbitrary, stationary object out of catoms that are 1 millimeter in diameter, according to Goldstein. The perfection of the technology would yield catoms so small that they could reproduce any texture precisely.

The project’s sponsors include CMU, Intel, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, and the National Science Foundation.

Well, no surprise that the folks following (and funding) this path of curiosity are an academic institution big on research, a public company with profits glistening in their shareholder’s eyes, the military complex with visions of virtual war dancing in their heads and the foundation that is chartered to keep American science alive.

But whomever is behind it, the technology sounds really, really cool.

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