The term "nanotechnology" has evolved over the years via terminology drift to mean "anything smaller than micro technology such as nano powders, and other things that are nanoscale in size, but not referring to mechanisms that have been purposefully built from nanoscale components. This evolved version of the term is more properly labeled "nanoscale bulk technology," while the original meaning is now more properly labeled "molecular nanotechnology" (MNT), or "nanoscale engineering," or "molecular mechanics," or "molecular machine systems," or "molecular manufacturing." MNT represents the state of the art in advances in biology, chemistry, physics, engineering, computer science and mathematics. The major research objectives in MNT are the design, modeling, and fabrication of molecular machines and molecular devices. The emergence of MNT - both infant and mature - has numerous social, legal, cultural, ethical, religious, philosophical and political implications.
Approximately 15 years ago scientists and engineers began discussing a technological revolution that would be as dramatic and far-reaching to society as the industrial revolution - the nanotechnology revolution. At first the primary promoters of the nanotechnology revolution were considered eccentric at best and a little crazy at worst. However, their ideas and visions are becoming accepted by the mainstream intellectual, scientific and engineering communities. Recently, governments and major corporations around the world have committed several billion dollars per year for the advancement of nanotechnology and nanoscience research and development.
Nanotechnology is a diverse collection of fields, touching on biology, medicine, materials, computers, manufacturing, physics, and several others. The distinctions are often blurred, sometimes deliberately for funding or theoretical purposes. Readers-and even some...