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Tuesday, December 26, 2017

On The Frontier of Synthetic Life

     Synthetic life. The very notion of life that is born from the efforts of humanity is daunting. Images are provoked of Dr. Frankenstein's laboratory. This is far from the true efforts in modern times however.
     Today's adventures in synthetic life may be categorized as mundane experiments in chemical robotics. The search for artificial muscles to increase the abilities of limited robotic kindred has opened doors that are unimaginable in materials research. Plastics have been altered to the point where they are interacting with first electrical components, heat, light, but also with DNA. Research at John Hopkins University has opened up a frontier in soft robotics.
     Hydrogels. The secret word that unlocks plastics into the fields of medicine, robotics, and more. Hydrogels are a plastic built around encapsulated water. The conductivity and behavior of hydrogel materials is chemically alterable, or thermally, by light, or by electricity. The nature of hydrogels has branded them as a smart material.
    Behaviorally, hydrogels are similar to biology. Some are even based around protein materials, blurring the lines between body and machine. Soon, every component of the robot can be based in hydrogel: actuators, conductors, sensors, transistors, or even electrical source voltage (similar to battery or capacitor). Many hydrogels are biologically compatible. I believe the next frontier in regenerative medicine will be hydrogels that will be robotic analogies to many organs, and could even be implanted with your own cells.
    One day we will be altogether too happy for a second chance at life that was borrowed from synthetic analogies of life. Hydrogels will be there to bridge the gap between chemicals, robots, and human medicine in the coming decades of medicine. Given enough time, the treatments that we receive as medical patients will become more and more like cybernetic implants. Time will tell where this will take us as a species, but I don't think that we will be looking back woefully. We will benefit immensely from the material improvement in medicine.

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Monday, November 20, 2017

Prediction: Quasiparticles will Create Improbable Technologies

   In physics a quasiparticle is an emergent phenomena of convergent properties acting as if they are particles free space. These phenomena are typically formed of known particles and/or known properties of particles. Many combinations can exist if the physics and underlying mathematics is well-known and consequentially well modeled.

   The most interesting aspect of quasiparticles, other than being an exotic high level application of physics, is that some new applications can emerge from stable quasiparticles that would exceed our current technological abilities. One quasiparticle that I have researched for some time is the exciton polariton. If this quasiparticle can be stabilized into a plasma in freespace, perhaps with intense radio waves and strong magnetic fields, it may be used to create dynamic fields that could move objects without a motor. This theoretical application hasn't been researched by anybody else, but it may be the mechanism behind the controversial "Hutchison Effect". 

   The mechanism that I propose for this is that John Hutchison's tinkering with Van Der Graaf generators and radio wave and microwave sources may have incidentally created some exciton polaritons by combining the proper frequency of photons with the charges freed fro m some electrons in the Van Der Graaf source. If the exciton polaritons can move freely around or through objects they could move the objects by creating a static difference in charges which could cause an electromotive force to arise in a similar fashion to electrohydrodynamics. 

   For those who are skeptics of John Hutchison's work, he admits that he has been unable to really accomplish this effect since 1991. I often double check my doubts by looking for a mechanism, and since parts of his "laboratory" were disclosed in some of his interviews, I found that there could be a mechanism as I described above. Since these effects were akin to a rumored Tesla experiment (which may still be top secret), I thought it was worth the additional time and interest.

   Further possibilities exist for quasiparticle technology. The list could extend to forcefields, tractor beams, programmable matter, and the ability to disrupt the electron repulsion that makes objects impervious (basically passing one solid object through another). Don't look for items based around quasiparticles on store shelves anytime soon, the physics is exotic and not yet well explored. There are a least a century's worth of milestones before we will see practical forcefield devices in use. 

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Adepts from Manufacturing Welcome

Updated: The plan outlined below will have significant delays that will forestall it as much as a decade (or more) from this point. Resources in time, expertise, and money are significant factors in this delay.

   I have hatched a plan to help manufacturing workers that are displaced by the growth in automation. The first phase will involve an Indiegogo campaign to raise one million dollars. With this money I will start a small research and development facility in an area starting to see declines in manufacturing. In many areas low participation in the area in full automation actually cause job losses, as what jobs are available in many areas in manufacturing will soon be lost to other areas with new full automation facilities.

   There will be a decline in manufacturing employment nationwide. New jobs will pay less. Automation will make the facilities require less labor overall, with competition overseas further lowering the employment in this sector. Over 9 million people in the United States currently work in manufacturing. As the job market changes a failure to adapt will be disastrous not only to these individuals and their families but to the markets that these individuals contribute to.

   My plan is thus:

1. Provide low cost training, low time investment training in research and development using cutting edge conceptual learning and open-source tools.

2. Using freshly trained workers convert E-waste and other waste stream products into higher value products such as consumer robotics using retro-engineering techniques and 3d-printer technology.

3. Eventually add training for energy efficiency, solar technologies, materials technologies to provide workers with the skillset to renew America's deteriorating infrastructure

4. Outsource skilled workers to growth sectors where they would use their new skills to help revitalize the American economy.

     No politician, and none of the current industries is proposing anything like what I am proposing here. This is a combined plan to reduce the waste-stream, retrain a workforce, and revitalize the crumbling infrastructure in America. If I succeed, then others will build on top of my efforts and America will move closer to our ideal land of opportunity.

   We have an exciting opportunity here to do more to help this land truly improve. I hope that you will participate and help me to do more to improve the lives of others. This will be a truly unique endeavor. I will update you all soon on the upcoming campaign.

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