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Nanotech will become the next science breakthrough?

  1. Sep 4, 2003 #1
    What do you think besides nanotech will become the next science breakthrough?
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2013
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 4, 2003 #2
    Clues ?

    Designing the Future

    For long-term scenarios, some of the more realistic technologies profiled in Minority Report were based upon ideas from a multidisciplinary think tank of scientists from MIT Media Lab and other leading institutions:

    " I thought it would be a good idea to bring some of the best minds in technology, environment, crime fighting, medicine, health, social services, transportation, computer technology and other fields into one room to discuss what the future a half century hence would be like. "

    Steven Spielberg

    http://www.nc-studios.com/reviews/minority/images/poster.jpg [Broken]
    Last edited by a moderator: May 1, 2017
  4. Sep 4, 2003 #3
    Re: Predictions

    The discovery of the T.O.E.

    Like Prof. Kaku has mentioned numerous times in his books (particularly in Visions), discovering the theory of everything will finally move us from learning the rules of the Universe to mastering them.

    Michio Kaku once used the illustration of a child watching two adults play chess. The child may get a basic idea of the rules, by watching the games carefully. However the child can never master the game without a complete set of rules and an understanding of the fundamental nature of the game itself (which is quite seperate from the rules of movement, as anyone who plays chess regularly knows).

    With the Theory of Everything, we will have a complete set of rules, which will enable us to finally start "mastering the game".
  5. Sep 4, 2003 #4
    Re: Re: Predictions

    So many years hearing it... the idea of an unified theory began when HC Oersted found the experimental relation between electricity and magnetism at 1820 as you know... and many times the scientists have believed to be close to it, before 1900! and some contemporaries big scientists predicted that before 2000 it would be developed... Maybe now we are so ingenuous than in 1900...

    sometimes I think it will be a kind of Grial, impossible to find... anyway the other times I really think we can do it!!!, so let's see...
  6. Sep 4, 2003 #5

    Claude Bile

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    Being an applied physicist I am inclined to think that technological breakthroughs rather than theoretical breakthroughs would tend to have more of an impact on our lives, for example, Maxwell's equations may have given us the fundamental principles from which to fabricate computer chips, but it was a lot longer before we actually made them and computers began to revolutionise Western society (It comes down to what you define as a breakthrough I suppose).

    In my humble opinion, the next major breakthrough will be in the field of Optical/Quantum computing (One of them, I am inclined to think that Optical computing is a little more feasible), which will spawn a world wide computer network like the internet only vastly more superior.

    I do not doubt however that a T.O.E. if discovered, would be a massive intellectual acheivement, and just as significant as any technological breakthrough.

    That's my opinion, Claude.
  7. Sep 4, 2003 #6
    Yea, the technological breakthrough surely will appear at nanotechnology, biotechnology, information technology and cognitive science, where some theoretical basis is done (where the optical, quantum or genetic computing are an example, as you say). The power of these technologies are infitite!
  8. Sep 5, 2003 #7


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    All I need is a tall ship ! :smile: A starship that is ! :wink:

    So bring on those warp drives so that I could get away from this planet
    and have some real fun...
  9. Sep 6, 2003 #8
    Psychology. The progression of the sciences thus far has been due to the applications of brute force, intuition, and intellect. What has been missing all along is a viable cognitive and behavioral understanding of what underlies all this progress in the first place. Currently the amount of raw data is doubling roughly every year and this rate is not expected to change. There is only so fast we can humanly collect information, only so fast we can absorb information, and no matter how educated and financed our populations, only so fast that we can absorb information and put it to productive use. The single largest stumbling block in these continuing efforts is ourselves.

    This is really a no-brainer. Humanity is now its own worst enemy, and the principle of "my enemy's enemy is my friend" (Frank Herbert) no longer applies. Many expect sometime in the near future a radical organic reorganization of the sciences among other things is inevitable, but without a firm understanding of ourselves as individuals, as social organizations, and as a species such a move would be impossible. Already the signs that this is occuring are clear, and sometime within the next hundred years I suspect the science will become a mature one.
  10. Sep 8, 2003 #9


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    Complexity of Information

    I wasn't sure whether to post this or not, but in regards to the future, how would we write the programs that would deal with the nature of consciousness? If such a TOE, is to exist, it must some how explain this?

    http://superstringtheory.com/forum/dualboard/messages14/214.html [Broken]

    If we understood the diagrams and logic demonstrated here, what value could we have assigned A(child)B(adult)C(Parent)

    If A is represented by O

    If B is represented by O

    If C is represented by O

    How would you define the actions, when All three overlap, or two over lap and one remains by itself?

    Probabilsitic detrminations under statistical analysis, can be detailed in Fuzzy logic to have recognized that three factors must be consider here, that under the heading of true or false, the the third result, is the adult?

    The adult then in the calculation would have been detailed, under this heading.

    In cryptology the simultaneous function is realized in this interaction?

    Last edited by a moderator: May 1, 2017
  11. Oct 7, 2003 #10
    To Go Beyond!

    Human mental development most certainly is emerging beyond dimensional
    bounderies within the mind. Just how is this possible? I believe that it is
    a natural process of the brain to expand it's horizon towards unexplored
    areas of thought, just like a seed which posses the capacity on becoming
    a mass much larger then it's beginning origin through a process of development
    step by step, building on the previous steps gathering more mass as it progresses.
    Half way on it's development we can not say it has fully matured, thus in some
    way this illustrates the brain/mind development. T.O.E.? there's more!
  12. Oct 8, 2003 #11
    I'm inclined between two options:
    The discovery of some form of lifeform in Titan
    the discovery of some new particle in the LHC that is being constructed between France and Switzerland (the Higgs boson?)
  13. Oct 8, 2003 #12


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    Junk DNA isn't

    Much (most?) DNA is thought to be "junk", in that it appears not to code for any gene or express any protein.

    The next big 'science breakthrough' (Greg's question) may well be the discovery that it isn't "junk" after all, but plays a very important role in ... what? We can't yet know!
  14. Oct 14, 2003 #13
    That makes little sense,mostly junk DNA, I doubt the scientist working on it said that, probably just too complicated to understand at this time and taken out of context to increase sales of some magazine.
    Life extension will probably be made so by brain transplantation into cloned/brainless bodies.
    Neuroelectronic interfaces have already been found to work for little things like moving a mechanical finger if I remember right, and you can see where that is going I give it 20 years before mass commercialization in whatever applications they can think we need it for.
    Then you've got all the vitual reality games that will grow into a kind of second world in about 10 years and where I'll be most of the time.
    I would predict that the TOE will be discovered(publicly) in a few years to have been discovered about 100 years ago or so. That a BEC is a miniature black hole and children are potentially the smartest humans on the planet until we start teaching them things.
    I think nanotechnology will be great with medical applications but the grandest discoveries are likely to be in psychology or philosophy or taking control of our own brains.
    And of course space travel, free energy, and true world democracy must all happen within the next 50 years but not because I'm good at predicting but because if I predicted these wouldn't happen in my lifetime then where's the motivation to try to make them happen? This is why I think fictional science is just as important as science, in the past they might have called it delusional thinking or even being possessed by deamons.
  15. Oct 14, 2003 #14


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    Dearly Missed

    No really. DNA is made up of two kinds of chemical, strings of bases, and strings of other stuff. The strings of bases can be interpreted as coding for strings of amino acids, i.e. proteins, by the genetic code. The other stuff can't, and is called junk DNA. In the human genome, most of the DNA is this junk stuff, which in some cases they are starting to understand as switches for turning protein synthesis on and off during the development of the embryo.
  16. Oct 19, 2003 #15
    Weird, shows what I know.
  17. Oct 21, 2003 #16
    dare I suggest perpetual energy and/or motion devices.


    Because we desparately need it/them.
  18. Oct 21, 2003 #17


    Perpetual machines are like try to find where it all begins. Maybe such a self memorizable loop can be created, where youth, will never loose the strength of it's first copy?

    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 21, 2003
  19. Oct 22, 2003 #18
    I think that besides nanotecnology there will be a discovery of lifefrom on Titan.
    Just curious what are your people's iq?
    Oh, to sol1: I luv the pic. Escher is pretty cool huh?
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 22, 2003
  20. Oct 23, 2003 #19
    Junk DNA Indeed!

    Human Sperm In Dramatic Decline Scientists Warn
    By Aaron Derfel Montreal Gazette
    http://www.montrealgazette.com 7-3-1

    Scientists from around the world are alarmed by a
    dramatic increase in genetically damaged human sperm -
    a trend that is not only causing infertility in men,
    but also childhood cancers in the offspring of those
    who can reproduce.

    It's now estimated that up to 85 per cent of the
    sperm produced by a healthy male is DNA-damaged, a
    leading authority on the subject revealed yesterday at
    an international conference being held in Montreal.

    "That's very unusual," said John Aitken, head of
    biological sciences at the University of Newcastle in

    "If you were to take a rat or a mouse or a rabbit,
    usually more than 80 per cent of their sperm would be

    For the last 20 years, scientists have known about
    declining sperm counts. But researchers are now
    learning that the quality of human sperm is steadily
    eroding, and might be causing birth defects as well
    as brain cancer and leukemia in children.

    Abnormal sperm is also being blamed for a global
    increase in testicular cancer - a disease that strikes
    men in their 30s. Scientists believe that when a
    DNA-damaged sperm fertilizes a woman's egg, it can
    trigger a mutation of a key gene in the embryo.

    And even if men today can reproduce, their damaged
    sperm might lead to infertility in their male progeny,
    Aitken suggested. "You're likely to see lots of
    diseases that are related to poorer semen quality."

    Scientists suspect a wide range of environmental
    causes for the abnormal sperm - from exposure to
    pesticides and heavy metals to electromagnetic

    "We're all exposed to 10 times more electromagnetic
    radiation than our forefathers," Aitken said. "It's
    all the electrical appliances we use, including
    microwave phones."

    There is a consensus in the scientific community
    that men who smoke cause damage to their sperm, and
    that this might be responsible for childhood cancers.
    "If you are a man and you smoke, your semen profile
    won't be obviously affected," Aitken said. "You'll
    still have lots of sperm swimming around and you'll be
    fertile. But the DNA in your sperm
    nucleus will be fragmented."

    The average ejaculate of human sperm contains 80
    million spermatazoa, each genetically programmed to
    fertilize a woman's egg. Scientists examining human
    sperm have discovered that not only are sperm counts
    the decline, but that the vast majority of sperm is
    sluggish, poorly structured, their DNA fragmented and
    that they generate a lot of cellular waste called free

    "Generally speaking, everything is bad with the
    sperm," Aitken said.

    Fortunately for most couples, it's the undamaged
    or least damaged sperm that tends to fertilize the

    As a result of increasing male infertility,
    scientists have developed a new technique to help
    couples conceive. It's called Intra-Cytoplasmic
    Sperm Injection (ICSI). In the lab, a technologist
    will take from the would-be father a single sperm, or
    even a cell that is on its way to becoming a sperm,
    and fertilize it in the test tube with the woman's
    egg. The resulting embryo is then transferred to the
    woman's uterus.

    Dr. Keith Jarvi, of the University of Toronto-Mount
    Sinai Hospital, said the ICSI technique has
    revolutionized the treatment of male infertility. But
    he wondered about the health outcomes of the ICSI

    That human sperm is of poorer quality than that of
    other mammals is not surprising. The human species is
    the only one that wears clothes, and healthy sperm
    need to be kept a couple of degrees cooler than the
    full body temperature. But clothing alone is not
    responsible for the extent of abnormal human sperm,
    Aitken argued.
  21. Oct 26, 2003 #20
    On the one we have simple-to-complex evolution theories ergo it may be belived by some
    that the junk DNA is left over from all the previous evolutionary, speicl-case, less complex animal incarnations before beoming the out-bred and more complex generalizing human.

    On the other hand we have complex-to-simple --Bucky Fuller-- theories ergo it may be bleived by some that the junk DNA is there --from the begiining of our extraterrestial incursions/arrivals to this Earth-- as the seeds for any future survival based in-breeding scenarios to evolve into special-case less complex creatures to fill any and all enviromental niches.

    As to what science breakthroughs will be truly great, i would first look to the history of such breaktrhoughs. As Bucky Fuller said with the bow and arrow analogy/metaphor(?) " the futher back we pull our bow-string the futher forward we can shoot our arrow. "

    Fuller mentions the zero/cipher/zifra as one of the greatest metaphysical --i.e. notational mathematics-- breakthroughs and may only be equaled in physical technology by the silicon chip ergo binary/digital computations and abilities at a scale never previosuly belived or thought possible. Others might argue --with good cause-- the printing press was the greatest one.

    Early Asian religous influences said to "go with the flow" as in "exceptance" follow the curent where it takes you. Then humans learned to sail but now thy went with flow of the wind. Then they went against GOd by learning to sail into the wind by zig-zag tacking.

    It may be that if humanity survives any current or looming "dark-age-like" scenarios that the the next truly great technlogical breaktrhough is only to be found currently in science fiction i.e. it is not realistically forseen.

    And finally i must say that unless there is a breakthrough of concern for life/spirit as a whole by those in power then we are less likely to suvive any looming dark-age of terror as accompanied with disease, inequalities, abuse and injustice.

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