I read about this at school and wrote a paper on it.
Modern computers will soon hit their limits because silicon microchips can only process information at a certain speed. But now, scientists have discovered an entirely new medium to take micro-computing and processing speed even further: DNA. DNA molecules are able to store much more information than silicon chips can, and they have been able to solve many mathematical problems that would stump the most powerful supercomputers. The concept of using genetic material for microprocessors goes back a decade, beginning with the father of DNA computing, Dr. Leonard Adleman. In Technology Review*, the article goes into specifics on how DNA computing will pave the way for smaller computers and faster processors. However, Adleman states that at this time, scientists are unable to control molecules as efficiently as electrical engineers can control electrons. Although we probably won¡¯t see a DNA computer-based desktop or laptop in our homes any time soon, scientists haven¡¯t given up hope.
This was the article in question if you want to read it.
*Antonio Regalado. Technology Review. Cambridge: May/June 2000. Vol.103, Iss.3; pg.80
It would probably be implemented in supercomputers and the sort of computers the CIA or FBI would be using.
My dad works for the FBI and says they'd probably never pay that much for one, lol.
I've heard a little about this before, and its pretty intriguing IMO.
[qoute]While still in their infancy, DNA computers will be capable of storing billions of times more data than your personal computer. In this article, you'll learn how scientists are using genetic material to create nano-computers that might take the place of silicon-based computers in the next decade.
DNA's key advantage is that it will make computers smaller than any computer that has come before them, while at the same time holding more data. One pound of DNA has the capacity to store more information than all the electronic computers ever built; and the computing power of a teardrop-sized DNA computer, using the DNA logic gates, will be more powerful than the world's most powerful supercomputer. More than 10 trillion DNA molecules can fit into an area no larger than 1 cubic centimeter (0.06 cubic inches). With this small amount of DNA, a computer would be able to hold 10 terabytes of data, and perform 10 trillion calculations at a time. By adding more DNA, more calculations could be performed.
Unlike conventional computers, DNA computers perform calculations parallel to other calculations. Conventional computers operate linearly, taking on tasks one at a time. It is parallel computing that allows DNA to solve complex mathematical problems in hours, whereas it might take electrical computers hundreds of years to complete them.
The first DNA computers are unlikely to feature word processing, e-mailing and solitaire programs. Instead, their powerful computing power will be used by national governments for cracking secret codes, or by airlines wanting to map more efficient routes. Studying DNA computers may also lead us to a better understanding of a more complex computer -- the human brain.[/quote]
Thats a quick overview of the technology, its one of several things I'm watching, along with holographic memory, quantum computers and the like.
its a fasinating idea, if we have dna then why can't computers? If they did manage to figure this out they could probably even figure out how to build the computer into the human body? And that would be cool, able to access and read your email from the comfort of your own body
there was an article in popular science ( i think, it might have been scientific american) that said DNA computers are only good for about a couple hundred traditional operations per second... compared to billions that current computers can do, and that DNA computers have the potential to revolutionize medicine... not neccesarily personal computers because of inbuilt limitations.
i heard of an "organic" hard-drive, is that DNA?
but i also heard that you have to "feed" it like once a month or it "dies".
(that is - once they develop it to work right)
What about spintronics, that has a butt-load of potential. It uses the direction the electrons are spinning, instead of the charge(therefore WAY less heat energy output vs. energy input), i read it could be in processors in the future @ 100GHz or more.
Also in hard-drives. CAN't wait 4 that, either DNA or spintronics can store an amazing amont of data!!
about the human body as a computer, could it be like your brain is the processor(way fast), or like a gene-therapy kind of thing/implant?
This would certainly give new meaning (and importance) to "computer virus."
|Traveller wrote: |
|This would certainly give new meaning (and importance) to "computer virus." |
whoa didn't think of that!! MAN that would suck if you died from a hacker!!!
but i think before it was on the market, failsafes would have been made,
and i meant brain as processor, it only the processor it doesn't store anything, but the genetherapy/implant thing would be dangerous if a hacker could hack into it,
BTW - y would they kill you when they could control you to do their bidding!?!?
|squirrelmaster wrote: |
|... but the genetherapy/implant thing would be dangerous if a hacker could hack into it, ... |
Just don't let Microsoft have anything to do with it, or 1/3 of the people would lose their memory, 1/3 would go catatonic and just give you a blank stare, and the remaining 1/3 would die for no apparent reason.
|Traveller wrote: |
|Just don't let Microsoft have anything to do with it, or 1/3 of the people would lose their memory, 1/3 would go catatonic and just give you a blank stare, and the remaining 1/3 would die for no apparent reason. |
WELL, that gives the Blue Screen of Death a whole new meaning!!
though, i wouldn't trust anyone to change my genes(if its a major re-work), or implant. But the brain as a processor i'd give a 50/50. But then again you would have to access it some how, nanobots or something, so maybe not.
Exactly: How would you ever know that they weren't implanting a back door?
|squirrelmaster wrote: |
|... i wouldn't trust anyone to change my genes(if its a major re-work), or implant. But the brain as a processor i'd give a 50/50. ... |
i wouldn't, that's why i said 50/50 chance of it being good
or it could be like those TV ad scams, with absolutely no up-side, and not doing what it said it would.
I mean it's DNA, if they put something else in there, how would I know if they did?
|squirrelmaster wrote: |
|I mean it's DNA, if they put something else in there, how would I know if they did? |
How do you know they haven't, already?
Whoa.... the whole DNA concept for computer just caught me right there. Man, imagine a thousand new possibilities that would bring. It could even lead to the truly actual advanced Artificial Intelligence, giving rise to actual humanlike robots with some kind of Positronic brain, as people in that field name it.
But really, DNA for computer? That's just fascinating. But since DNA is organic, it would be very much different from handling silicon, so I guess that's what make it a real headache for those scientists.
Okay, a quick question here, how long would it take for the first prototype of DNA computer be built? Anyone?
"In conjunction with the University of Basel, IBM has found a new approach for using tiny biochemical "machines" made of silicon to detect defects in DNA, which could eventually lead to new medical treatments. In this new biomechanical phenomenon, the researchers discovered that DNA bends tiny silicon "fingers" (or cantilevers) that have a thickness of less than 1/50 of a human hair. Using a process called molecular recognition, researchers discovered that by observing the way different cantilevers bent as the DNA adhered to them, they were able to detect the tiniest possible defect in a DNA sequence."