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Andrew Zimmerman Jones

Continuing the National Nanotechnology Initiative

By April 11, 2010

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The United States government started the National Nanotechnology Initiative (NNI) in 2000, and as it enters its second decade, a new report has been issued to evaluate its effectiveness. The results are impressive - the NNI has helped ensure that American has become the dominant force in the growing field of nanotechnology. And the report suggests that we should keep it up, because other nations are definitely trying to take the lead position in this growth industry.

The Science Progress blog has taken this as an opportunity to go into some interesting depth on the importance of innovation, and specifically the unintended consequences that can come from it. I won't go into detail on it in this post (as I have here and here), but needless to say it's nice to see the government agreeing that we should invest in our future success, instead of just bailing out businesses that are "too big to fail." I do wonder if American innovation is too big to fail, or if we'll have to wait until it's failed to find out that it was our most important asset.

Comments

April 19, 2010 at 10:34 am
(1) Peter McBrien says:

For now, I believe Cold Fusion is an oxymoron. Maybe Nano can change that paradigm?
I have this crazy dream that gene splicing + Nano may come up with a material to contain & encapsulate heat.
Have mercy on me in any comments, remember, I am not a scientist.

April 19, 2010 at 6:52 pm
(2) mike stahl says:

Thanks for an excellent post. In my dotage, I find that the disinterest (often fueled by belief) in science amongst young people in the US is appalling.

The more access there is to science the better off humanity will be but also the US can again return to a genuine science leader in the world. Not only will we have more home grown scientists but we can retain more individuals who come across oceans to be educated here.

Personally I am a highly educated non-scientist who has an avid interest in science. I rely on several newsletters to inform me of basic information such as new findings in life sciences. When I hit the links for the more academic details, too often I am thwarted by a fee.

The more access all of us have to scientific details the better we’ll be (and the happier I will be).

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