UPDATED 10:30 EDT / AUGUST 17 2009

Bleeding Edge: DNA Origami Process Chipsets

image In almost literal bleeding edge news today, a Reuters report says that IBM is utilizing the very building blocks of life to engineer future chip designs.

"Basically, this is telling us that biological structures like DNA actually offer some very reproducible, repetitive kinds of patterns that we can actually leverage in semiconductor processes," IBM research manager Spike Narayan said in an interview with Reuters.

Gizmodo tries to put it in plain geek-speak for the rest of us: “From the "at least 10 years out" category of microchip fabrication comes word that IBM is working to reduce future costs and microchip sizes by using DNA. Yes, that’s correct: The building blocks of life could one day contribute to your virtual reality headshot in Halo 28: Master Chief Comes Back From the Dead for the 12th Time.”

IBM is calling the chipset technology the “DNA origami process.”  They’re saying that the process is at least ten years out, but knowing the IBM development cycle, it could be sooner than that – they said six years ago that solid state drive storage was at least a decade away.

The new technology could theoretically reduce manufacturing costs by factors of a hundred, according IBM’s Narayan.

It once again goes to prove that Moore’s Law can no more be circumvented than the laws of gravity – despite the constant naysayers.


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