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The Next Big Thing Is Really Small: How Nanotechnology Will Change the Future of Your Business

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nanotechnology \na-no--tek-'nä-l -je-\ n (1987): the science of manipulating material at the atomic level Although nanotechnology deals with the very small—a nanometer is 1/80,000th the diameter of a human hair—it is going to be huge. From the food we eat, the clothes we wear, and the products we manufacture to the composition of our bodies, everything is made of atoms. And nanotechnology \na-no--tek-'nä-l -je-\ n (1987): the science of manipulating material at the atomic level Although nanotechnology deals with the very small—a nanometer is 1/80,000th the diameter of a human hair—it is going to be huge. From the food we eat, the clothes we wear, and the products we manufacture to the composition of our bodies, everything is made of atoms. And if we can manipulate the atom, then that changes the rules of the game for almost every product. Coal and diamonds, for example, are both constructed from carbon atoms. It’s merely the arrangement of the atoms that differentiates an inexpensive fuel source from a pricey engagement jewel. While the science of nanotech cannot yet transform coal into diamonds, it is advancing rapidly and will begin to radically alter the business world during the next few years—and will continue to do so for the forseeable future. The buzz surrounding nanotech is comparable to that at the dawn of the digital revolution, which changed the face of how business operates. Unlike the Internet, however, which applied new technology to many old processes and businesses, nanotech is about creating entirely new materials, products, and systems (and therefore markets), as well as making existing products faster, stronger, and better. You may be tempted to wait until the buzz dies down before deciding how to integrate nanotech into your business, but don’t make the mistake of thinking of it as being light-years away. Even though it may sound far-off at times, within ten years nanotech will have huge effects on many industries, including manufacturing, health care, energy, agriculture, communications, transportation, and electronics. Within a decade, nanotechnology is expected to be the basis of $1 trillion worth of products in the United States alone and will create anywhere from 800,000 to 2 million new jobs. Nanotechnology will require you to radically re-think what your core business is, who your competitors are, what skills your workforce needs, how to train your employees, and how to think strategically about the future. Jack Uldrich and Deb Newberry explain exactly how you should prepare for nanotech’s imminent arrival. They identify today’s nanotech innovators, chronicle and project the rapid rise of nanotech developments, and show how to think strategically about the field’s opportunities and investments. The Next Big Thing Is Really Small provides a sneak peek at the technology that will transform the next ten years, giving investors and executives a road map for using small wonders to generate big profits. From the Hardcover edition.


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nanotechnology \na-no--tek-'nä-l -je-\ n (1987): the science of manipulating material at the atomic level Although nanotechnology deals with the very small—a nanometer is 1/80,000th the diameter of a human hair—it is going to be huge. From the food we eat, the clothes we wear, and the products we manufacture to the composition of our bodies, everything is made of atoms. And nanotechnology \na-no--tek-'nä-l -je-\ n (1987): the science of manipulating material at the atomic level Although nanotechnology deals with the very small—a nanometer is 1/80,000th the diameter of a human hair—it is going to be huge. From the food we eat, the clothes we wear, and the products we manufacture to the composition of our bodies, everything is made of atoms. And if we can manipulate the atom, then that changes the rules of the game for almost every product. Coal and diamonds, for example, are both constructed from carbon atoms. It’s merely the arrangement of the atoms that differentiates an inexpensive fuel source from a pricey engagement jewel. While the science of nanotech cannot yet transform coal into diamonds, it is advancing rapidly and will begin to radically alter the business world during the next few years—and will continue to do so for the forseeable future. The buzz surrounding nanotech is comparable to that at the dawn of the digital revolution, which changed the face of how business operates. Unlike the Internet, however, which applied new technology to many old processes and businesses, nanotech is about creating entirely new materials, products, and systems (and therefore markets), as well as making existing products faster, stronger, and better. You may be tempted to wait until the buzz dies down before deciding how to integrate nanotech into your business, but don’t make the mistake of thinking of it as being light-years away. Even though it may sound far-off at times, within ten years nanotech will have huge effects on many industries, including manufacturing, health care, energy, agriculture, communications, transportation, and electronics. Within a decade, nanotechnology is expected to be the basis of $1 trillion worth of products in the United States alone and will create anywhere from 800,000 to 2 million new jobs. Nanotechnology will require you to radically re-think what your core business is, who your competitors are, what skills your workforce needs, how to train your employees, and how to think strategically about the future. Jack Uldrich and Deb Newberry explain exactly how you should prepare for nanotech’s imminent arrival. They identify today’s nanotech innovators, chronicle and project the rapid rise of nanotech developments, and show how to think strategically about the field’s opportunities and investments. The Next Big Thing Is Really Small provides a sneak peek at the technology that will transform the next ten years, giving investors and executives a road map for using small wonders to generate big profits. From the Hardcover edition.

34 review for The Next Big Thing Is Really Small: How Nanotechnology Will Change the Future of Your Business

  1. 5 out of 5

    Dennis Littrell

    An introduction to the brave new world of the very, very small "Nano-" is a prefix meaning one-billionth (just as "giga-" is a prefix meaning one billion). A nanometer is one-billionth of a meter, and as the authors illustrate on page 24, a nanometer is about ten hydrogen atoms wide while a typical biological cell is thousands of nanometers wide. It is useful to understand that nanotechnology is then about manipulating the very small irrespective of the technological field or science involved. Thi An introduction to the brave new world of the very, very small "Nano-" is a prefix meaning one-billionth (just as "giga-" is a prefix meaning one billion). A nanometer is one-billionth of a meter, and as the authors illustrate on page 24, a nanometer is about ten hydrogen atoms wide while a typical biological cell is thousands of nanometers wide. It is useful to understand that nanotechnology is then about manipulating the very small irrespective of the technological field or science involved. This is an important point and one the Jack Uldrich and Deb Newberry emphasize throughout this breezy and readable introduction to how nanotechnology is going to change our lives over the next couple of decades. Manipulating the very small, molecule by molecule, and even atom by atom, will prove enormously useful in a wide range of industries, from space exploration and the airline business to the modification of foods to the treatment and prevention of disease. Consequently what this book is about is not only building ultra-turbo'ed computers and superslick surfaces for airplanes and submarines, but about genetically modified foods and stem cell research. This book just skims the surface of what is going on and gives the reader some idea about where the action is and what is likely to develop in the next few years. Starting in 2003, they project what products and services are likely to be available today (Chapter Five: "2004 & 2005: Faster, Smaller, Cheaper, Better"); a few years from now (Chapter Six: "2006-2008: The Avalanche Begins"); a decade down the road (Chapter Seven: "Taking Control"); and on into the future (Chapter Eight: "2013 & Beyond: The World Becomes Smaller and Smarter"). Their book-business spin is how these changes will affect YOUR business. The watchword is "disruptive," because a new nanoengineered product has the potential for putting present day businesses OUT of business. Just as the internal combustion engine changed the landscape of America, and electricity transformed our world in ways that nobody at the time could reliably predict, the products and services made possible by the manipulation of the very, very small, will (very soon) change the way we live in ways we cannot fully predict--which suggests the question, hich are the horse and buggy businesses of today? Since this book is aimed at readers interested in the possible impact of the nanoworld on their businesses, the authors suggest how many advances will play out: First, the military or the space program or a large corporation will develop at high cost the new technology. Then, as the technology is seen to work, it will spread to "very high-end niches" such as in sports and recreation (yacht racing and mountain climbing, for example) where people are ready to pay a high price for just a little improvement. From there the technology will be taken up by "high-end markets" (fancy cars, expensive cosmetics, etc.) and from there as the price continues to fall "to everyday products (e.g., kitchen appliances, bikes, and toys)..." and so on. (p. 166) Conservative people the world over are understandably upset at some of the prospects. By manipulating individual biological cells and their attendant chemistry, we might be able to grow new limbs and organs for our bodies, possibly including a whole new YOU. Food products will be modified to include imbedded vitamins and pesticides (this is already being done), but also medicines and even contraceptives. We will be able to wear or have implanted in our bodies super-fast computers. Indeed, it may happen that we will become the cyborgs of science fiction, making it hard to tell where our genetic biology ends and our enhanced body begins. We may in fact cross over some unmarked threshold and become something other than human. While the authors are not looking this far ahead, it is interesting to note that Chapter Seven is subtitled "Taking Control." The irony here is that with identity tags ("nanosensors") imbedded in every product (and possibly into EVERY BODY) we ourselves will not be taking control. Rather the technology will be taking control of us. Remember that biological evolution on this once lifeless planet began with chemistry, and now the products of that chemistry (us) are reaching out to control the planet. Might not our technology some day control us? Oh, Brave New World,/ That has such things in it!--to paraphrase Shakespeare (from The Tempest). In the final chapter the authors do address the ethical, philosophical and social aspects of nanotechnology-enabled advances in our lives and warn that many people will be against them (indeed many people already are against them). It will not be a case of a technology taking off smoothly. Whether the best technique or product wins out in the marketplace (as the Qwerty keyboard, VHS technology, and Microsoft showed us) may depend on how resistant people are to change, how intrenched one technology is, and how the politics play out. The brave new world of nanotechnology will transform the planet, no question about that, but when and how is, as the authors advise, entirely unclear. Nonetheless the authors emphasize the positive aspects of the great changes to come. They see nanotechnology giving us cheaper energy, solving our fresh water and pollution problems, enabling us to live longer and better lives, etc. Personally I welcome the excitement and change to come, and I envy those younger than I who will see a lot more of it. --Dennis Littrell, author of “The World Is Not as We Think It Is”

  2. 5 out of 5

    Mark

    A mostly business book to publicize that nanotechnology will really change both your business, with some explanations who it will affect the health, materials, and semiconductor industries among others. Most useful part is mentioning companies that are doing things now and where they expect to be in a few years. Makes you believe things are really going to change, I’m fascinated by these machines able to talk with each other because of little information chips that will be possible. However, som A mostly business book to publicize that nanotechnology will really change both your business, with some explanations who it will affect the health, materials, and semiconductor industries among others. Most useful part is mentioning companies that are doing things now and where they expect to be in a few years. Makes you believe things are really going to change, I’m fascinated by these machines able to talk with each other because of little information chips that will be possible. However, some of his stories are not technically nano, and even worse the entire book is written in a “the sky is falling mentality.” Many things in that book are supposed to have impact now at the end of 2003, but I haven’t seen them. I especially was turned off by the business model to get your company up to date. However, at the very least it is a broad overview about what could happen, and a good way to explain the implications of nanotechnology to a lay person, so they understand. Intro was almost verbatim with the presentation given by Josh Wolf of Lux Capital and Forbes Nanotech Report at NY Investment Trends Nanotechnology Seminar.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Carl

    This is a very lightweight book and hugely out-of-date now. I picked up in a Free Box; I guess that it was worth what I paid for it.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Timothy

  5. 4 out of 5

    Eddiec111

  6. 5 out of 5

    Apj

  7. 5 out of 5

    Minksteroo

  8. 4 out of 5

    NAOTAKE MURAYAMA

  9. 4 out of 5

    Rebekah L. Kent

  10. 5 out of 5

    Jnokleby

  11. 5 out of 5

    Paul Gladen

  12. 4 out of 5

    Sharon

  13. 4 out of 5

    Peter Attia

  14. 5 out of 5

    Ramona Whittington

  15. 5 out of 5

    Diane

  16. 5 out of 5

    Anuj

  17. 5 out of 5

    Robert L. Wilking

  18. 5 out of 5

    Jim

  19. 5 out of 5

    Erkankoca85

  20. 5 out of 5

    Chris Butterfield

  21. 5 out of 5

    Ben Swinney

  22. 4 out of 5

    John

  23. 4 out of 5

    Michele Cermele

  24. 4 out of 5

    Anish Nanavati

  25. 5 out of 5

    Susana Clarinda Ferreira Machado

  26. 4 out of 5

    Wizards

  27. 5 out of 5

    Kary

  28. 5 out of 5

    Thong

  29. 4 out of 5

    B F

  30. 5 out of 5

    Paul

  31. 4 out of 5

    Jessi Hawkins

  32. 5 out of 5

    Brian Farnham

  33. 4 out of 5

    Brooklyn

  34. 5 out of 5

    James Beers

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