Blogs and Publications
Our blog with the most important updates on Nanotechnology can be found on our Nanodot page. Since May of 2000, Nanodot has been Foresight's blog, commenting on science, technology development, and other news relevant to Foresight's mission to support technological development toward an abundant future. By that time, the importance of developing technology to control the structure of matter at the nanometer scale-nanotechnology-had become widely recognized, leading to substantial research funding. However, the term "nanotechnology" had become appropriated to describe fabrication by already existing technologies of nanostructures with useful functional properties, and the gradual, incremental improvement of such methods. At the same time, many scientists were skeptical that it would be practical to pursue a long-term effort to develop a general purpose method for manufacturing complex, atomically precise structures designed for a very wide range of technological purposes -the ultimate goal Foresight has advocated since its founding. Many of Nanodot's early posts were focused on this distinction and the debates surrounding it. Others focused on progress with incremental nanotechnology toward meeting urgent, practical needs, in medicine or other fields. Most focused on advances in various molecular sciences and in surface physics that illuminate paths to the ultimate goal of atomically precise manufacturing (APM). With the debates of the early years fading into history, Nanodot continues to focus on paths to APM , while also covering progress in important related technologies, including biotechnology, artificial intelligence, quantum computing, and the cognitive sciences. To guide these advances toward an abundant future, we look at synergies among these developments, potential problems to be avoided, and ways to accelerate progress.
Workshop White Papers
Our invitational technical workshops attract luminaries and domain experts from all fields. We follow a recipe inspired by design thinking to make ideas and exchange happen that wouldn't otherwise happen. While most parts of the workshop content is restricted via the Chatham House Rule to encourage cutting-edge discussion, our workshop White Papers summarize discussions and proposed research projects:
2016 Breakthrough Technologies for Energy Workshop: White Paper.
2015 Atomic Precision for Medicine Workshop: White Paper.
The Technology Roadmap for Productive Nanosystems charts a path beginning with current nanotechnology capabilities to advanced systems. The Roadmap is a first attempt to lay out a step-by-step course of development that must take place to move from one stage to another, with milestones for achieving each step. With the support and collaboration of our partners, The Waitt Family Foundation and Battelle, we identify the gap between the basic nanostructured materials of today, and the potential of productive nanosystems. It can be accessed here. Press Releases and background information, can be accessed here.
Foresight Guidelines for responsible nanotechnology development
Foresight Institute's goal is to guide emerging technologies to improve the human condition and the environment. Foresight's policy recognizes that nanotechnology — like all pivotal technologies — brings both potential perils and benefits. A 1988 Foresight Background document included the section "A Dialog on Dangers". Part of Foresight's efforts to help achieve the advantages and avoid these dangers of nanotechnology has been the development of guidelines for research and development. It can be accessed here.
We have been trailblazing the path to beneficial emerging technologies for 30 years now. To access everything that we've done so far, including many educational resources, go to our legacy website. These include:
- 20 technical conferences starting with The First General Conference on Nanotechnology held in 1992
- Foresight's Updates, background essays, and briefings on nanotechnology since 1987
- Resources for researchers, investors, governments and students
- Publications, including books, magazines and journals
- Presentations by Foresight staff and conference invitees