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C-R-Newsletter #33

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  • Mike Treder
    Center for Responsible Nanotechnology Newsletter #33 August 31, 2005 To read this on the Web, with nice formatting and hyperlinks, go to
    Message 1 of 4 , Sep 1, 2005
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      Center for Responsible Nanotechnology Newsletter #33
      August 31, 2005

      To read this on the Web, with nice formatting and hyperlinks, go to
      http://www.crnano.org/archive05.htm#33

      CONTENTS

      - CRN Forms Policy Task Force
      - Eric Drexler Joins Nanorex
      - Connecticut Schools Go Nano
      - NASA Website Covers CRN Work
      - CRN Goes to Vermont
      - CRN Goes to Chicago
      - CRN Goes to Bootcamp
      - Dimensions of Development
      - 13th Foresight Conference
      - Feature Essay: Molecular Manufacturing Design Software

      ==========

      We're a little late getting the C-R-Newsletter out this month, but as
      you can see, we've been extremely busy. To keep up with the latest
      happenings on a daily basis, be sure to check our Responsible
      Nanotechnology weblog at http://CRNano.typepad.com/

      NOTE: In the items below, links are indicated with [brackets], and
      shown at the end of each item.


      CRN Forms Policy Task Force

      The big news this month is that [CRN announced] the formation of a new
      Global Task Force to study the societal implications of advanced
      nanotechnology. Bringing together a diverse group of world-class
      experts from multiple disciplines, CRN will lead an historic,
      collaborative effort to develop comprehensive policy recommendations
      for the safe and responsible use of molecular manufacturing.

      Just [two weeks] after the
      initial announcement, which mentioned four "charter members" of the
      CRN Task Force, we're up to 39 participants from six different
      countries. In addition, three organizations are publicly supporting
      this effort: the Society of Manufacturing Engineers, the Society of
      Police Futurists International, and the Nanotechnology Now web portal.

      Several online planning sessions have been held, and the CRN Task
      Force is now beginning its initial task: to itemize the necessary
      information that must be available in order to design wise and
      effective policy.

      http://www.crnano.org/PR-charter.htm
      http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2005/08/crn_task_force_.html


      Eric Drexler Joins Nanorex

      Nanorex, a molecular engineering software company based in Michigan,
      has named [Dr. K. Eric Drexler] as the company's Chief Technical
      Advisor. [The company] said that Drexler will play a leading role in
      shaping Nanorex's product strategy and advancing the company's
      academic outreach programs.

      Often described as the 'father of nanotechnology', Eric Drexler is on
      the [Board of Advisors] for CRN. His groundbreaking theoretical
      research has been the basis for three books, including ["Nanosystems:
      Molecular Machinery, Manufacturing, and Computation"], and numerous
      journal articles. Last year, he collaborated with Chris Phoenix, CRN's
      Director of Research, on ["Safe Exponential Manufacturing"], published
      in the Institute of Physics journal "Nanotechnology."

      In 1986, Drexler founded the [Foresight Nanotech Institute], a
      non-profit think tank and public interest organization focused on
      nanotechnology. He was awarded a PhD from MIT in Molecular
      Nanotechnology (the first degree of its kind). Drexler is expected to
      be deeply involved in the project to develop a [Technology Roadmap for
      Productive Nanosystems], recently announced by Foresight and the
      Battelle research organization.

      http://e-drexler.com/p/idx04/00/0404drexlerBioCV.html
      http://www.nanorex.com/
      http://www.crnano.org/about_us.htm#Advisors
      http://www.crnano.org/5min.htm
      http://www.crnano.org/papers.htm#Goo
      http://www.foresight.org/
      http://www.foresight.org/cms/press_center/128


      Connecticut Schools Go Nano

      Connecticut Governor M. Jodi Rell has enacted a [new law] requiring
      the Commissioner of Higher Education in her state to review the
      inclusion of nanotechnology, molecular manufacturing and advanced and
      developing technologies at institutions of higher education.

      CRN is pleased to note that this measure specifically designates
      molecular manufacturing as something that should be studied for
      inclusion in the curriculum at institutions of higher education. We
      encourage other states -- and indeed, other countries -- to follow
      Connecticut's lead.

      http://tinyurl.com/aljbt


      NASA Website Covers CRN Work

      The NASA Institute for Advanced Concepts (NIAC), an independent,
      NASA-funded organization located in Atlanta, Georgia, was created to
      promote forward-looking research on radical space technologies that
      will take 10 to 40 years to come to fruition. Last year, NIAC [awarded
      a grant] to Chris Phoenix, CRN's Director of Research, to conduct a
      feasibility study of nanoscale manufacturing.

      On NASA's website, [an article] titled "The Next Giant Leap"
      highlights the work NIAC is funding in nanotechnology research, and
      includes a description of the 112-page report Chris presented to them.
      We congratulate Chris on this much-deserved recognition.

      http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2004/09/niac_funds_crn_.html
      http://tinyurl.com/94luq


      CRN Goes to Vermont

      In late July, CRN principals Mike Treder and Chris Phoenix were
      invited to participate in a [special workshop] on 'geoethical
      nanotechnology', held at a beautiful mountain retreat in Vermont. Our
      gracious host was Martine Rothblatt, CEO of United Therapeutics
      Corporation, and founder of the [Terasem Movement Foundation.]

      Among those [making presentations] were Ray Kurzweil, CEO of Kurzweil
      Technologies; Professor Frank Tipler of Tulane University; Douglas
      Mulhall, author of "Our Molecular Future"; and Dr. Barry Blumberg, a
      Nobel Prize-winner in medicine and Founding Director of the NASA
      Astrobiology Institute. CRN's PowerPoint presentation for the event is
      available online [here.]

      Geoethical nanotechnology is defined as: the development and
      implementation under a global regulatory framework of machines capable
      of assembling molecules into a wide variety of objects, in a broad
      range of sizes, and in potentially vast quantities.

      http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2005/07/about_geoethica.html
      http://terasemfoundation.org/about.htm
      http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2005/07/applications_an.html
      http://www.terasemfoundation.org/webcast/ppt/Treder.ppt


      CRN Goes to Chicago

      Also in July, CRN Executive Director Mike Treder gave talks at two
      events in Chicago. First, at a special [nanotech symposium], Mike
      delivered a presentation called ["The Flat Horizon Problem:
      Nanotechnology on an Upward Slope"].

      Then, during the annual conference of the World Future Society, Mike
      made a speech titled, ["Do Sweat the Small Stuff: Why Everyone Should
      Care About Nanotechnology"]. The conference, [WorldFuture 2005:
      Foresight, Innovation, and Strategy], was managed excellently and
      enjoyed huge attendance.

      http://www.crnano.org/SymposiumonNanotechnology_July05,Chicago_.pdf
      http://www.crnano.org/Speech%20-%20Upward%20Slope.ppt
      http://www.crnano.org/Speech%20-%20WFS%20-%20Web%20Version.ppt
      http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2005/08/wfs_conference_.html


      CRN Goes to Bootcamp

      In mid-July, CRN Research Director Chris Phoenix spent four days in
      Washington DC at a [Nano Training Bootcamp] sponsored by the ASME. He
      called it "quite a brain-stretcher." Topics included quantum
      mechanics, optics, thermoelectrics, nanolithography, and much more.
      Chris provided us with extensive blog reports during the event, so you
      can read about all the tech-talk from [Day One], [Day Two], [Day
      Three], and [Day Four].

      http://www.asmeconferences.org/nanobootcamp05/speakers.cfm
      http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2005/07/nano_training_b.html
      http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2005/07/asme_nano_bootc.html
      http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2005/07/asme_nano_bootc_1.html
      http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2005/07/asme_nano_bootc_2.html


      Dimensions of Development

      Many factors will determine how soon and how safely molecular
      manufacturing is integrated into society, including where, how openly,
      and how rapidly it is developed. Because nanotech manufacturing could
      be so disruptive and destabilizing, it is essential that we learn as
      much as possible about those factors and others. The more we know, the
      better we may be able to guide and manage this revolutionary
      transformation.

      Mike Treder's [latest essay] for "Future Brief" describes six
      different dimensions — Number, Style, Venue, Approach, Program, and
      Pace — along which molecular manufacturing may be developed. Making
      effective policy for the safe and responsible use of advanced
      nanotechnology will require a deep and comprehensive understanding of
      all six dimensions. To be effective, a coordinated and integrated
      strategy of multiple complimentary policies must be designed and
      implemented. (Note: At the time the essay was published, the [CRN
      Global Task Force on Implications and Policy] had not yet been announced.)

      http://www.futurebrief.com/miketrederdimensions004.asp
      http://www.crnano.org/PR-charter.htm


      13th Foresight Conference

      CRN is proud to be a media sponsor for the [13th Foresight Conference]
      on Advanced Nanotechnology. The title of the conference this year is
      "Advancing Beneficial Nanotechnology: Focusing on the Cutting Edge,"
      and it will be divided into three stand-alone, complementary sessions
      — Vision, Applications & Policy, and Research — spread over six days.

      The conference is October 22-27, 2005, in San Francisco, California.
      They've got a great lineup of speakers, so we hope to see you there.

      http://foresight.org/conference2005/index.html


      Feature Essay: Molecular Manufacturing Design Software
      Chris Phoenix, Director of Research, CRN

      Nanofactories, controlled by computerized blueprints, will be able to
      build a vast range of high performance products. However, efficient
      product design will require advanced software.

      Different kinds of products will require different approaches to
      design. Some, such as high-performance supercomputers and advanced
      medical devices, will be packed with functionality and will require
      large amounts of research and invention. For these products, the
      hardest part of design will be knowing what you want to build in the
      first place. The ability to build test hardware rapidly and
      inexpensively will make it easier to do the necessary research, but
      that is not the focus of this essay.

      There are many products that we easily could imagine and that a
      nanofactory easily could build if told exactly how. But as any
      computer programmer knows, it's not easy to tell a computer what you
      want it to do — it's more or less like trying to direct a blind person
      to cook a meal in an unfamiliar kitchen. One mistake, and the food is
      spilled or the stove catches fire.

      Computer users have an easier time of it. To continue the analogy, if
      the blind person had become familiar with the kitchen, instructions
      could be given on the level of "Get the onions from the left-hand
      vegetable drawer" rather than "Move your hand two inches to your
      right... a bit more... pull the handle... bend down and reach
      forward... farther... open the drawer... feel the round things?" It is
      the job of the programmer to write the low-level instructions that
      create appliances from obstacles.

      Another advantage of modern computers, from the user's point of view,
      is their input devices. Instead of typing a number, a user can simply
      move a mouse, and a relatively simple routine can translate its motion
      into the desired number, and the number into the desired operation
      such as moving a pointer or a scroll bar.

      Suppose I wanted to design a motorcycle. Today, I would have to do
      engineering to determine stresses and strains, and design a structure
      to support them. The engineering would have to take into account the
      materials and fasteners, which in turn would have to be designed for
      inexpensive assembly. But these choices would limit the material
      properties, perhaps requiring several iterations of design. And that's
      just for the frame.

      Next, I would have to choose components for a suspension system,
      configure an engine, add an electrical system and a braking system,
      and mount a fuel tank. Then, I would have to design each element of
      the user interface, from the seat to the handgrips to the lights
      behind the dials on the instrument panel. Each thing the user would
      see or touch would have to be made attractive, and simultaneously
      specified in a way that could be molded or shaped. And each component
      would have to stay out of the way of the others: the engine would have
      to fit inside the frame, the fuel tank might have to be molded to
      avoid the cylinder heads or the battery, and the brake lines would
      have to be routed from the handlebars and along the frame, adding
      expense to the manufacturing process and complexity to the design process.

      As I described in last month's essay, most nanofactory-built
      human-scale products will be mostly empty space due to the awesomely
      high performance of both active and passive components. It will not be
      necessary to worry much about keeping components out of each other's
      way, because the components will be so small that they can be put
      almost anywhere. This means that, for example, the frame can be
      designed without worrying where the motor will be, because the motor
      will be a few microns of nanoscale motors lining the axles. Rather
      than routing large hydraulic brake lines, it will be possible to run
      highly redundant microscopic signal lines controlling the calipers—or
      more likely, the regenerative braking functionality built into the motors.

      It will not be necessary to worry about design for manufacturability.
      With a planar-assembly nanofactory, almost any shape can be made as
      easily as any other, because the shapes are made by adding sub-micron
      nanoblocks to selected locations in a supported plane of the growing
      product. There will be less constraint on form than there is in sand
      casting of metals, and of course far more precision. This also means
      that what is built can contain functional components incorporated in
      the structure. Rather than building a frame and mounting other pieces
      later, the frame can be built with all components installed, forming a
      complete product. This does require functional joints between
      nanoblocks, but this is a small price to pay for such flexibility.

      To specify functionality of a product, in many cases it will be
      sufficient to describe the desired functionality in the abstract
      without worrying about its physical implementation. If every cubic
      millimeter of the product contains a networked computer—which is quite
      possible, and may be the default—then to send a signal from point A to
      point B requires no more than specifying the points. Distributing
      energy or even transporting materials may not require much more
      attention: a rapidly rotating diamond shaft can transport more than a
      watt per square micron, and would be small enough to route
      automatically through almost any structure; pipes can be made
      significantly smaller if they are configured with continually
      inverting liners to reduce drag.

      Thus, to design the acceleration and braking behavior of the
      motorcycle, it might be enough to specify the desired torque on the
      wheels as a function of speed, tire skidding, and brake and throttle
      position. A spreadsheet-like interface could calculate the necessary
      power and force for the motors, and from that derive the necessary
      axle thickness. The battery would be fairly massive, so the user would
      position it, but might not have to worry about the motor-battery
      connection, and certainly should not have to design the motor controller.

      In order to include high-functionality materials such as motor arrays
      or stress-reporting materials, it would be necessary to start with a
      library of well-characterized "virtual materials" with standard
      functionality. This approach could significantly reduce the functional
      density of the virtual material compared to what would be possible
      with a custom-designed solution, but this would be acceptable for many
      applications, because functional density of nano-built equipment may
      be anywhere from six to eighteen orders of magnitude better than
      today's equipment. Virtual materials could also be used to specify
      material properties such as density and elasticity over a wide range,
      or implement active materials that changed attributes such as color or
      shape under software control.

      Prototypes as well as consumer products could be heavily instrumented,
      warning of unexpected operating conditions such as excessive stress or
      wear on any part. Rather than careful calculations to determine the
      tradeoff between weight and strength, it might be better to build a
      first-guess model, try it on increasingly rough roads at increasingly
      high speeds, and measure rather than calculate the required strength.

      Once some parameters had been determined, a new version could be
      spreadsheeted and built in an hour or so at low cost. It would be
      unnecessary to trade time for money by doing careful calculations to
      minimize the number of prototypes. Then, for a low-performance
      application like a motorcycle, the final product could be built ten
      times stronger than was thought to be necessary without sacrificing
      much mass or cost.

      There are only a few sources of shape requirements. One is
      geometrical: round things roll, flat things stack, and triangles make
      good trusses. These shapes tend to be simple to specify, though some
      applications like fluid handling can require intricate curves. The
      second source of shape is compatibility with other shapes, as in a
      piece that must fit snugly to another piece. These shapes can
      frequently be input from existing databases or scanned from an
      existing object. A third source of shape is user preference. A look at
      the shapes of pen barrels, door handles, and eyeglasses shows that
      users are pleased by some pretty idiosyncratic shapes.

      To input arbitrary shapes into the blueprint, it may be useful to have
      some kind of interface that implements or simulates a moldable
      material like clay or taffy. A blob could simply be molded or
      stretched into a pleasing shape. Another useful technique could be to
      present the designer or user with several variations on a theme, let
      them select the best one, and build new variations on that until a
      sufficiently pleasing version is produced.

      Although there is more to product design than the inputs described
      here, this should give some flavor of how much more convenient it
      could be with computer-controlled rapid prototyping of complete
      products. Elegant computer-input devices, pervasive instrumentation
      and signal processing, virtual material libraries, inexpensive
      creation of one-off spreadsheeted prototypes, and several other
      techniques could make product design more like a combination of
      graphic arts and computer programming than the complex, slow, and
      expensive process it is today.


      * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

      FUNDRAISING ALERT!

      Recent developments in efforts to roadmap the technical steps toward
      molecular manufacturing make the work of CRN more important than ever.

      It is critical that we examine the global implications of this rapidly
      emerging technology, and begin designing wise and effective policy.
      That's why we have formed the CRN Task Force.

      But it won't be easy. We need to grow, and rapidly, to meet the
      expanding challenge.

      Your donation to CRN will help us to achieve that growth. We rely
      largely on individual donations and small grants for our survival.

      To make a contribution on-line click this link >
      https://secure.groundspring.org/dn/index.php?aid=5594

      This is important work and we welcome your participation.

      * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

      The Fine Print:

      The Center for Responsible Nanotechnology(TM) is an affiliate of World
      Care(R), an international, non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization. All
      donations to CRN are handled through World Care. The opinions
      expressed by CRN do not necessarily reflect those of World Care.

      Sign up for a FREE subscription to the C-R-Newsletter --
      http://crnano.org/contact.htm#Newsletter
    • Roderick Mc Carthy
      hey this is really exciting. it echos a few month old drive towards responcibility within the sci-com to provide and implement their (our) own regulation and
      Message 2 of 4 , Sep 7, 2005
      • 0 Attachment
        hey this is really exciting. it echos a few month old drive towards responcibility within the sci-com to provide and implement their (our) own regulation and best practice policy and precautionary approaches. could you please provide me with details of this as it developes.. email: primalspice1723_40@...
        it is important to me and as an informed observer (er... interested person) i feel that i could give some good feed back to the process.

        keep it real

        regards

        roderick
        X


        Mike Treder <mtreder@...> wrote:
        Center for Responsible Nanotechnology Newsletter #33
        August 31, 2005

        To read this on the Web, with nice formatting and hyperlinks, go to
        http://www.crnano.org/archive05.htm#33

        CONTENTS

        - CRN Forms Policy Task Force
        - Eric Drexler Joins Nanorex
        - Connecticut Schools Go Nano
        - NASA Website Covers CRN Work
        - CRN Goes to Vermont
        - CRN Goes to Chicago
        - CRN Goes to Bootcamp
        - Dimensions of Development
        - 13th Foresight Conference
        - Feature Essay: Molecular Manufacturing Design Software

        ==========

        We're a little late getting the C-R-Newsletter out this month, but as
        you can see, we've been extremely busy. To keep up with the latest
        happenings on a daily basis, be sure to check our Responsible
        Nanotechnology weblog at http://CRNano.typepad.com/

        NOTE: In the items below, links are indicated with [brackets], and
        shown at the end of each item.


        CRN Forms Policy Task Force

        The big news this month is that [CRN announced] the formation of a new
        Global Task Force to study the societal implications of advanced
        nanotechnology. Bringing together a diverse group of world-class
        experts from multiple disciplines, CRN will lead an historic,
        collaborative effort to develop comprehensive policy recommendations
        for the safe and responsible use of molecular manufacturing.

        Just [two weeks] after the
        initial announcement, which mentioned four "charter members" of the
        CRN Task Force, we're up to 39 participants from six different
        countries. In addition, three organizations are publicly supporting
        this effort: the Society of Manufacturing Engineers, the Society of
        Police Futurists International, and the Nanotechnology Now web portal.

        Several online planning sessions have been held, and the CRN Task
        Force is now beginning its initial task: to itemize the necessary
        information that must be available in order to design wise and
        effective policy.

        http://www.crnano.org/PR-charter.htm
        http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2005/08/crn_task_force_.html


        Eric Drexler Joins Nanorex

        Nanorex, a molecular engineering software company based in Michigan,
        has named [Dr. K. Eric Drexler] as the company's Chief Technical
        Advisor. [The company] said that Drexler will play a leading role in
        shaping Nanorex's product strategy and advancing the company's
        academic outreach programs.

        Often described as the 'father of nanotechnology', Eric Drexler is on
        the [Board of Advisors] for CRN. His groundbreaking theoretical
        research has been the basis for three books, including ["Nanosystems:
        Molecular Machinery, Manufacturing, and Computation"], and numerous
        journal articles. Last year, he collaborated with Chris Phoenix, CRN's
        Director of Research, on ["Safe Exponential Manufacturing"], published
        in the Institute of Physics journal "Nanotechnology."

        In 1986, Drexler founded the [Foresight Nanotech Institute], a
        non-profit think tank and public interest organization focused on
        nanotechnology. He was awarded a PhD from MIT in Molecular
        Nanotechnology (the first degree of its kind). Drexler is expected to
        be deeply involved in the project to develop a [Technology Roadmap for
        Productive Nanosystems], recently announced by Foresight and the
        Battelle research organization.

        http://e-drexler.com/p/idx04/00/0404drexlerBioCV.html
        http://www.nanorex.com/
        http://www.crnano.org/about_us.htm#Advisors
        http://www.crnano.org/5min.htm
        http://www.crnano.org/papers.htm#Goo
        http://www.foresight.org/
        http://www.foresight.org/cms/press_center/128


        Connecticut Schools Go Nano

        Connecticut Governor M. Jodi Rell has enacted a [new law] requiring
        the Commissioner of Higher Education in her state to review the
        inclusion of nanotechnology, molecular manufacturing and advanced and
        developing technologies at institutions of higher education.

        CRN is pleased to note that this measure specifically designates
        molecular manufacturing as something that should be studied for
        inclusion in the curriculum at institutions of higher education. We
        encourage other states -- and indeed, other countries -- to follow
        Connecticut's lead.

        http://tinyurl.com/aljbt


        NASA Website Covers CRN Work

        The NASA Institute for Advanced Concepts (NIAC), an independent,
        NASA-funded organization located in Atlanta, Georgia, was created to
        promote forward-looking research on radical space technologies that
        will take 10 to 40 years to come to fruition. Last year, NIAC [awarded
        a grant] to Chris Phoenix, CRN's Director of Research, to conduct a
        feasibility study of nanoscale manufacturing.

        On NASA's website, [an article] titled "The Next Giant Leap"
        highlights the work NIAC is funding in nanotechnology research, and
        includes a description of the 112-page report Chris presented to them.
        We congratulate Chris on this much-deserved recognition.

        http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2004/09/niac_funds_crn_.html
        http://tinyurl.com/94luq


        CRN Goes to Vermont

        In late July, CRN principals Mike Treder and Chris Phoenix were
        invited to participate in a [special workshop] on 'geoethical
        nanotechnology', held at a beautiful mountain retreat in Vermont. Our
        gracious host was Martine Rothblatt, CEO of United Therapeutics
        Corporation, and founder of the [Terasem Movement Foundation.]

        Among those [making presentations] were Ray Kurzweil, CEO of Kurzweil
        Technologies; Professor Frank Tipler of Tulane University; Douglas
        Mulhall, author of "Our Molecular Future"; and Dr. Barry Blumberg, a
        Nobel Prize-winner in medicine and Founding Director of the NASA
        Astrobiology Institute. CRN's PowerPoint presentation for the event is
        available online [here.]

        Geoethical nanotechnology is defined as: the development and
        implementation under a global regulatory framework of machines capable
        of assembling molecules into a wide variety of objects, in a broad
        range of sizes, and in potentially vast quantities.

        http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2005/07/about_geoethica.html
        http://terasemfoundation.org/about.htm
        http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2005/07/applications_an.html
        http://www.terasemfoundation.org/webcast/ppt/Treder.ppt


        CRN Goes to Chicago

        Also in July, CRN Executive Director Mike Treder gave talks at two
        events in Chicago. First, at a special [nanotech symposium], Mike
        delivered a presentation called ["The Flat Horizon Problem:
        Nanotechnology on an Upward Slope"].

        Then, during the annual conference of the World Future Society, Mike
        made a speech titled, ["Do Sweat the Small Stuff: Why Everyone Should
        Care About Nanotechnology"]. The conference, [WorldFuture 2005:
        Foresight, Innovation, and Strategy], was managed excellently and
        enjoyed huge attendance.

        http://www.crnano.org/SymposiumonNanotechnology_July05,Chicago_.pdf
        http://www.crnano.org/Speech%20-%20Upward%20Slope.ppt
        http://www.crnano.org/Speech%20-%20WFS%20-%20Web%20Version.ppt
        http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2005/08/wfs_conference_.html


        CRN Goes to Bootcamp

        In mid-July, CRN Research Director Chris Phoenix spent four days in
        Washington DC at a [Nano Training Bootcamp] sponsored by the ASME. He
        called it "quite a brain-stretcher." Topics included quantum
        mechanics, optics, thermoelectrics, nanolithography, and much more.
        Chris provided us with extensive blog reports during the event, so you
        can read about all the tech-talk from [Day One], [Day Two], [Day
        Three], and [Day Four].

        http://www.asmeconferences.org/nanobootcamp05/speakers.cfm
        http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2005/07/nano_training_b.html
        http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2005/07/asme_nano_bootc.html
        http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2005/07/asme_nano_bootc_1.html
        http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2005/07/asme_nano_bootc_2.html


        Dimensions of Development

        Many factors will determine how soon and how safely molecular
        manufacturing is integrated into society, including where, how openly,
        and how rapidly it is developed. Because nanotech manufacturing could
        be so disruptive and destabilizing, it is essential that we learn as
        much as possible about those factors and others. The more we know, the
        better we may be able to guide and manage this revolutionary
        transformation.

        Mike Treder's [latest essay] for "Future Brief" describes six
        different dimensions — Number, Style, Venue, Approach, Program, and
        Pace — along which molecular manufacturing may be developed. Making
        effective policy for the safe and responsible use of advanced
        nanotechnology will require a deep and comprehensive understanding of
        all six dimensions. To be effective, a coordinated and integrated
        strategy of multiple complimentary policies must be designed and
        implemented. (Note: At the time the essay was published, the [CRN
        Global Task Force on Implications and Policy] had not yet been announced.)

        http://www.futurebrief.com/miketrederdimensions004.asp
        http://www.crnano.org/PR-charter.htm


        13th Foresight Conference

        CRN is proud to be a media sponsor for the [13th Foresight Conference]
        on Advanced Nanotechnology. The title of the conference this year is
        "Advancing Beneficial Nanotechnology: Focusing on the Cutting Edge,"
        and it will be divided into three stand-alone, complementary sessions
        — Vision, Applications & Policy, and Research — spread over six days.

        The conference is October 22-27, 2005, in San Francisco, California.
        They've got a great lineup of speakers, so we hope to see you there.

        http://foresight.org/conference2005/index.html


        Feature Essay: Molecular Manufacturing Design Software
        Chris Phoenix, Director of Research, CRN

        Nanofactories, controlled by computerized blueprints, will be able to
        build a vast range of high performance products. However, efficient
        product design will require advanced software.

        Different kinds of products will require different approaches to
        design. Some, such as high-performance supercomputers and advanced
        medical devices, will be packed with functionality and will require
        large amounts of research and invention. For these products, the
        hardest part of design will be knowing what you want to build in the
        first place. The ability to build test hardware rapidly and
        inexpensively will make it easier to do the necessary research, but
        that is not the focus of this essay.

        There are many products that we easily could imagine and that a
        nanofactory easily could build if told exactly how. But as any
        computer programmer knows, it's not easy to tell a computer what you
        want it to do — it's more or less like trying to direct a blind person
        to cook a meal in an unfamiliar kitchen. One mistake, and the food is
        spilled or the stove catches fire.

        Computer users have an easier time of it. To continue the analogy, if
        the blind person had become familiar with the kitchen, instructions
        could be given on the level of "Get the onions from the left-hand
        vegetable drawer" rather than "Move your hand two inches to your
        right... a bit more... pull the handle... bend down and reach
        forward... farther... open the drawer... feel the round things?" It is
        the job of the programmer to write the low-level instructions that
        create appliances from obstacles.

        Another advantage of modern computers, from the user's point of view,
        is their input devices. Instead of typing a number, a user can simply
        move a mouse, and a relatively simple routine can translate its motion
        into the desired number, and the number into the desired operation
        such as moving a pointer or a scroll bar.

        Suppose I wanted to design a motorcycle. Today, I would have to do
        engineering to determine stresses and strains, and design a structure
        to support them. The engineering would have to take into account the
        materials and fasteners, which in turn would have to be designed for
        inexpensive assembly. But these choices would limit the material
        properties, perhaps requiring several iterations of design. And that's
        just for the frame.

        Next, I would have to choose components for a suspension system,
        configure an engine, add an electrical system and a braking system,
        and mount a fuel tank. Then, I would have to design each element of
        the user interface, from the seat to the handgrips to the lights
        behind the dials on the instrument panel. Each thing the user would
        see or touch would have to be made attractive, and simultaneously
        specified in a way that could be molded or shaped. And each component
        would have to stay out of the way of the others: the engine would have
        to fit inside the frame, the fuel tank might have to be molded to
        avoid the cylinder heads or the battery, and the brake lines would
        have to be routed from the handlebars and along the frame, adding
        expense to the manufacturing process and complexity to the design process.

        As I described in last month's essay, most nanofactory-built
        human-scale products will be mostly empty space due to the awesomely
        high performance of both active and passive components. It will not be
        necessary to worry much about keeping components out of each other's
        way, because the components will be so small that they can be put
        almost anywhere. This means that, for example, the frame can be
        designed without worrying where the motor will be, because the motor
        will be a few microns of nanoscale motors lining the axles. Rather
        than routing large hydraulic brake lines, it will be possible to run
        highly redundant microscopic signal lines controlling the calipers—or
        more likely, the regenerative braking functionality built into the motors.

        It will not be necessary to worry about design for manufacturability.
        With a planar-assembly nanofactory, almost any shape can be made as
        easily as any other, because the shapes are made by adding sub-micron
        nanoblocks to selected locations in a supported plane of the growing
        product. There will be less constraint on form than there is in sand
        casting of metals, and of course far more precision. This also means
        that what is built can contain functional components incorporated in
        the structure. Rather than building a frame and mounting other pieces
        later, the frame can be built with all components installed, forming a
        complete product. This does require functional joints between
        nanoblocks, but this is a small price to pay for such flexibility.

        To specify functionality of a product, in many cases it will be
        sufficient to describe the desired functionality in the abstract
        without worrying about its physical implementation. If every cubic
        millimeter of the product contains a networked computer—which is quite
        possible, and may be the default—then to send a signal from point A to
        point B requires no more than specifying the points. Distributing
        energy or even transporting materials may not require much more
        attention: a rapidly rotating diamond shaft can transport more than a
        watt per square micron, and would be small enough to route
        automatically through almost any structure; pipes can be made
        significantly smaller if they are configured with continually
        inverting liners to reduce drag.

        Thus, to design the acceleration and braking behavior of the
        motorcycle, it might be enough to specify the desired torque on the
        wheels as a function of speed, tire skidding, and brake and throttle
        position. A spreadsheet-like interface could calculate the necessary
        power and force for the motors, and from that derive the necessary
        axle thickness. The battery would be fairly massive, so the user would
        position it, but might not have to worry about the motor-battery
        connection, and certainly should not have to design the motor controller.

        In order to include high-functionality materials such as motor arrays
        or stress-reporting materials, it would be necessary to start with a
        library of well-characterized "virtual materials" with standard
        functionality. This approach could significantly reduce the functional
        density of the virtual material compared to what would be possible
        with a custom-designed solution, but this would be acceptable for many
        applications, because functional density of nano-built equipment may
        be anywhere from six to eighteen orders of magnitude better than
        today's equipment. Virtual materials could also be used to specify
        material properties such as density and elasticity over a wide range,
        or implement active materials that changed attributes such as color or
        shape under software control.

        Prototypes as well as consumer products could be heavily instrumented,
        warning of unexpected operating conditions such as excessive stress or
        wear on any part. Rather than careful calculations to determine the
        tradeoff between weight and strength, it might be better to build a
        first-guess model, try it on increasingly rough roads at increasingly
        high speeds, and measure rather than calculate the required strength.

        Once some parameters had been determined, a new version could be
        spreadsheeted and built in an hour or so at low cost. It would be
        unnecessary to trade time for money by doing careful calculations to
        minimize the number of prototypes. Then, for a low-performance
        application like a motorcycle, the final product could be built ten
        times stronger than was thought to be necessary without sacrificing
        much mass or cost.

        There are only a few sources of shape requirements. One is
        geometrical: round things roll, flat things stack, and triangles make
        good trusses. These shapes tend to be simple to specify, though some
        applications like fluid handling can require intricate curves. The
        second source of shape is compatibility with other shapes, as in a
        piece that must fit snugly to another piece. These shapes can
        frequently be input from existing databases or scanned from an
        existing object. A third source of shape is user preference. A look at
        the shapes of pen barrels, door handles, and eyeglasses shows that
        users are pleased by some pretty idiosyncratic shapes.

        To input arbitrary shapes into the blueprint, it may be useful to have
        some kind of interface that implements or simulates a moldable
        material like clay or taffy. A blob could simply be molded or
        stretched into a pleasing shape. Another useful technique could be to
        present the designer or user with several variations on a theme, let
        them select the best one, and build new variations on that until a
        sufficiently pleasing version is produced.

        Although there is more to product design than the inputs described
        here, this should give some flavor of how much more convenient it
        could be with computer-controlled rapid prototyping of complete
        products. Elegant computer-input devices, pervasive instrumentation
        and signal processing, virtual material libraries, inexpensive
        creation of one-off spreadsheeted prototypes, and several other
        techniques could make product design more like a combination of
        graphic arts and computer programming than the complex, slow, and
        expensive process it is today.


        * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

        FUNDRAISING ALERT!

        Recent developments in efforts to roadmap the technical steps toward
        molecular manufacturing make the work of CRN more important than ever.

        It is critical that we examine the global implications of this rapidly
        emerging technology, and begin designing wise and effective policy.
        That's why we have formed the CRN Task Force.

        But it won't be easy. We need to grow, and rapidly, to meet the
        expanding challenge.

        Your donation to CRN will help us to achieve that growth. We rely
        largely on individual donations and small grants for our survival.

        To make a contribution on-line click this link >
        https://secure.groundspring.org/dn/index.php?aid=5594

        This is important work and we welcome your participation.

        * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

        The Fine Print:

        The Center for Responsible Nanotechnology(TM) is an affiliate of World
        Care(R), an international, non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization. All
        donations to CRN are handled through World Care. The opinions
        expressed by CRN do not necessarily reflect those of World Care.

        Sign up for a FREE subscription to the C-R-Newsletter --
        http://crnano.org/contact.htm#Newsletter









        The Nanotechnology Industries mailing list.
        http://www.nanoindustries.com
        Nanotechnology: solutions for the future.
        Yahoo! Groups Links



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      • jaime knutson
        You all should take ethics, philosophy and religious courses so you re not science heavy. ... http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2005/08/crn_task_force_.html
        Message 3 of 4 , Sep 7, 2005
        • 0 Attachment
          You all should take ethics, philosophy and religious
          courses so you're not science heavy.

          --- Roderick Mc Carthy <lifestation2004@...>
          wrote:

          > hey this is really exciting. it echos a few month
          > old drive towards responcibility within the sci-com
          > to provide and implement their (our) own regulation
          > and best practice policy and precautionary
          > approaches. could you please provide me with details
          > of this as it developes.. email:
          > primalspice1723_40@...
          > it is important to me and as an informed observer
          > (er... interested person) i feel that i could give
          > some good feed back to the process.
          >
          > keep it real
          >
          > regards
          >
          > roderick
          > X
          >
          >
          > Mike Treder <mtreder@...> wrote:
          > Center for Responsible Nanotechnology Newsletter #33
          > August 31, 2005
          >
          > To read this on the Web, with nice formatting and
          > hyperlinks, go to
          > http://www.crnano.org/archive05.htm#33
          >
          > CONTENTS
          >
          > - CRN Forms Policy Task Force
          > - Eric Drexler Joins Nanorex
          > - Connecticut Schools Go Nano
          > - NASA Website Covers CRN Work
          > - CRN Goes to Vermont
          > - CRN Goes to Chicago
          > - CRN Goes to Bootcamp
          > - Dimensions of Development
          > - 13th Foresight Conference
          > - Feature Essay: Molecular Manufacturing Design
          > Software
          >
          > ==========
          >
          > We're a little late getting the C-R-Newsletter out
          > this month, but as
          > you can see, we've been extremely busy. To keep up
          > with the latest
          > happenings on a daily basis, be sure to check our
          > Responsible
          > Nanotechnology weblog at http://CRNano.typepad.com/
          >
          > NOTE: In the items below, links are indicated with
          > [brackets], and
          > shown at the end of each item.
          >
          >
          > CRN Forms Policy Task Force
          >
          > The big news this month is that [CRN announced] the
          > formation of a new
          > Global Task Force to study the societal implications
          > of advanced
          > nanotechnology. Bringing together a diverse group of
          > world-class
          > experts from multiple disciplines, CRN will lead an
          > historic,
          > collaborative effort to develop comprehensive policy
          > recommendations
          > for the safe and responsible use of molecular
          > manufacturing.
          >
          > Just [two weeks] after the
          > initial announcement, which mentioned four "charter
          > members" of the
          > CRN Task Force, we're up to 39 participants from six
          > different
          > countries. In addition, three organizations are
          > publicly supporting
          > this effort: the Society of Manufacturing Engineers,
          > the Society of
          > Police Futurists International, and the
          > Nanotechnology Now web portal.
          >
          > Several online planning sessions have been held, and
          > the CRN Task
          > Force is now beginning its initial task: to itemize
          > the necessary
          > information that must be available in order to
          > design wise and
          > effective policy.
          >
          > http://www.crnano.org/PR-charter.htm
          >
          http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2005/08/crn_task_force_.html
          >
          >
          > Eric Drexler Joins Nanorex
          >
          > Nanorex, a molecular engineering software company
          > based in Michigan,
          > has named [Dr. K. Eric Drexler] as the company's
          > Chief Technical
          > Advisor. [The company] said that Drexler will play a
          > leading role in
          > shaping Nanorex's product strategy and advancing the
          > company's
          > academic outreach programs.
          >
          > Often described as the 'father of nanotechnology',
          > Eric Drexler is on
          > the [Board of Advisors] for CRN. His groundbreaking
          > theoretical
          > research has been the basis for three books,
          > including ["Nanosystems:
          > Molecular Machinery, Manufacturing, and
          > Computation"], and numerous
          > journal articles. Last year, he collaborated with
          > Chris Phoenix, CRN's
          > Director of Research, on ["Safe Exponential
          > Manufacturing"], published
          > in the Institute of Physics journal
          > "Nanotechnology."
          >
          > In 1986, Drexler founded the [Foresight Nanotech
          > Institute], a
          > non-profit think tank and public interest
          > organization focused on
          > nanotechnology. He was awarded a PhD from MIT in
          > Molecular
          > Nanotechnology (the first degree of its kind).
          > Drexler is expected to
          > be deeply involved in the project to develop a
          > [Technology Roadmap for
          > Productive Nanosystems], recently announced by
          > Foresight and the
          > Battelle research organization.
          >
          >
          http://e-drexler.com/p/idx04/00/0404drexlerBioCV.html
          > http://www.nanorex.com/
          > http://www.crnano.org/about_us.htm#Advisors
          > http://www.crnano.org/5min.htm
          > http://www.crnano.org/papers.htm#Goo
          > http://www.foresight.org/
          > http://www.foresight.org/cms/press_center/128
          >
          >
          > Connecticut Schools Go Nano
          >
          > Connecticut Governor M. Jodi Rell has enacted a [new
          > law] requiring
          > the Commissioner of Higher Education in her state to
          > review the
          > inclusion of nanotechnology, molecular manufacturing
          > and advanced and
          > developing technologies at institutions of higher
          > education.
          >
          > CRN is pleased to note that this measure
          > specifically designates
          > molecular manufacturing as something that should be
          > studied for
          > inclusion in the curriculum at institutions of
          > higher education. We
          > encourage other states -- and indeed, other
          > countries -- to follow
          > Connecticut's lead.
          >
          > http://tinyurl.com/aljbt
          >
          >
          > NASA Website Covers CRN Work
          >
          > The NASA Institute for Advanced Concepts (NIAC), an
          > independent,
          > NASA-funded organization located in Atlanta,
          > Georgia, was created to
          > promote forward-looking research on radical space
          > technologies that
          > will take 10 to 40 years to come to fruition. Last
          > year, NIAC [awarded
          > a grant] to Chris Phoenix, CRN's Director of
          > Research, to conduct a
          > feasibility study of nanoscale manufacturing.
          >
          > On NASA's website, [an article] titled "The Next
          > Giant Leap"
          > highlights the work NIAC is funding in
          > nanotechnology research, and
          > includes a description of the 112-page report Chris
          > presented to them.
          > We congratulate Chris on this much-deserved
          > recognition.
          >
          >
          http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2004/09/niac_funds_crn_.html
          > http://tinyurl.com/94luq
          >
          >
          > CRN Goes to Vermont
          >
          > In late July, CRN principals Mike Treder and Chris
          > Phoenix were
          > invited to participate in a [special workshop] on
          > 'geoethical
          >
          === message truncated ===


          que sera sera....
        • Mike Treder
          We are aiming for membership in the CRN Task Force to be broad and inclusive. We do have ethicists and philosophers among our 44 members (getting larger every
          Message 4 of 4 , Sep 7, 2005
          • 0 Attachment
            We are aiming for membership in the CRN Task Force to be broad and
            inclusive. We do have ethicists and philosophers among our 44 members
            (getting larger every day), and will welcome someone with a religious
            viewpoint who can strengthen our studies on nanotechnology
            implications and policy.

            (see http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2005/08/crn_task_force_.html)

            Mike Treder
            CRN Executive Director


            --- In nanotech@yahoogroups.com, jaime knutson <athenaaqua@y...>
            wrote:
            > You all should take ethics, philosophy and religious
            > courses so you're not science heavy.
            >
            > --- Roderick Mc Carthy <lifestation2004@y...>
            > wrote:
            >
            > > hey this is really exciting. it echos a few month
            > > old drive towards responcibility within the sci-com
            > > to provide and implement their (our) own regulation
            > > and best practice policy and precautionary
            > > approaches. could you please provide me with details
            > > of this as it developes.. email:
            > > primalspice1723_40@h...
            > > it is important to me and as an informed observer
            > > (er... interested person) i feel that i could give
            > > some good feed back to the process.
            > >
            > > keep it real
            > >
            > > regards
            > >
            > > roderick
            > > X
            > >
            > >
            > > Mike Treder <mtreder@C...> wrote:
            > > Center for Responsible Nanotechnology Newsletter #33
            > > August 31, 2005
            > >
            > > To read this on the Web, with nice formatting and
            > > hyperlinks, go to
            > > http://www.crnano.org/archive05.htm#33
            > >
            > > CONTENTS
            > >
            > > - CRN Forms Policy Task Force
            > > - Eric Drexler Joins Nanorex
            > > - Connecticut Schools Go Nano
            > > - NASA Website Covers CRN Work
            > > - CRN Goes to Vermont
            > > - CRN Goes to Chicago
            > > - CRN Goes to Bootcamp
            > > - Dimensions of Development
            > > - 13th Foresight Conference
            > > - Feature Essay: Molecular Manufacturing Design
            > > Software
            > >
            > > ==========
            > >
            > > We're a little late getting the C-R-Newsletter out
            > > this month, but as
            > > you can see, we've been extremely busy. To keep up
            > > with the latest
            > > happenings on a daily basis, be sure to check our
            > > Responsible
            > > Nanotechnology weblog at http://CRNano.typepad.com/
            > >
            > > NOTE: In the items below, links are indicated with
            > > [brackets], and
            > > shown at the end of each item.
            > >
            > >
            > > CRN Forms Policy Task Force
            > >
            > > The big news this month is that [CRN announced] the
            > > formation of a new
            > > Global Task Force to study the societal implications
            > > of advanced
            > > nanotechnology. Bringing together a diverse group of
            > > world-class
            > > experts from multiple disciplines, CRN will lead an
            > > historic,
            > > collaborative effort to develop comprehensive policy
            > > recommendations
            > > for the safe and responsible use of molecular
            > > manufacturing.
            > >
            > > Just [two weeks] after the
            > > initial announcement, which mentioned four "charter
            > > members" of the
            > > CRN Task Force, we're up to 39 participants from six
            > > different
            > > countries. In addition, three organizations are
            > > publicly supporting
            > > this effort: the Society of Manufacturing Engineers,
            > > the Society of
            > > Police Futurists International, and the
            > > Nanotechnology Now web portal.
            > >
            > > Several online planning sessions have been held, and
            > > the CRN Task
            > > Force is now beginning its initial task: to itemize
            > > the necessary
            > > information that must be available in order to
            > > design wise and
            > > effective policy.
            > >
            > > http://www.crnano.org/PR-charter.htm
            > >
            > http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2005/08/crn_task_force_.html
            > >
            > >
            > > Eric Drexler Joins Nanorex
            > >
            > > Nanorex, a molecular engineering software company
            > > based in Michigan,
            > > has named [Dr. K. Eric Drexler] as the company's
            > > Chief Technical
            > > Advisor. [The company] said that Drexler will play a
            > > leading role in
            > > shaping Nanorex's product strategy and advancing the
            > > company's
            > > academic outreach programs.
            > >
            > > Often described as the 'father of nanotechnology',
            > > Eric Drexler is on
            > > the [Board of Advisors] for CRN. His groundbreaking
            > > theoretical
            > > research has been the basis for three books,
            > > including ["Nanosystems:
            > > Molecular Machinery, Manufacturing, and
            > > Computation"], and numerous
            > > journal articles. Last year, he collaborated with
            > > Chris Phoenix, CRN's
            > > Director of Research, on ["Safe Exponential
            > > Manufacturing"], published
            > > in the Institute of Physics journal
            > > "Nanotechnology."
            > >
            > > In 1986, Drexler founded the [Foresight Nanotech
            > > Institute], a
            > > non-profit think tank and public interest
            > > organization focused on
            > > nanotechnology. He was awarded a PhD from MIT in
            > > Molecular
            > > Nanotechnology (the first degree of its kind).
            > > Drexler is expected to
            > > be deeply involved in the project to develop a
            > > [Technology Roadmap for
            > > Productive Nanosystems], recently announced by
            > > Foresight and the
            > > Battelle research organization.
            > >
            > >
            > http://e-drexler.com/p/idx04/00/0404drexlerBioCV.html
            > > http://www.nanorex.com/
            > > http://www.crnano.org/about_us.htm#Advisors
            > > http://www.crnano.org/5min.htm
            > > http://www.crnano.org/papers.htm#Goo
            > > http://www.foresight.org/
            > > http://www.foresight.org/cms/press_center/128
            > >
            > >
            > > Connecticut Schools Go Nano
            > >
            > > Connecticut Governor M. Jodi Rell has enacted a [new
            > > law] requiring
            > > the Commissioner of Higher Education in her state to
            > > review the
            > > inclusion of nanotechnology, molecular manufacturing
            > > and advanced and
            > > developing technologies at institutions of higher
            > > education.
            > >
            > > CRN is pleased to note that this measure
            > > specifically designates
            > > molecular manufacturing as something that should be
            > > studied for
            > > inclusion in the curriculum at institutions of
            > > higher education. We
            > > encourage other states -- and indeed, other
            > > countries -- to follow
            > > Connecticut's lead.
            > >
            > > http://tinyurl.com/aljbt
            > >
            > >
            > > NASA Website Covers CRN Work
            > >
            > > The NASA Institute for Advanced Concepts (NIAC), an
            > > independent,
            > > NASA-funded organization located in Atlanta,
            > > Georgia, was created to
            > > promote forward-looking research on radical space
            > > technologies that
            > > will take 10 to 40 years to come to fruition. Last
            > > year, NIAC [awarded
            > > a grant] to Chris Phoenix, CRN's Director of
            > > Research, to conduct a
            > > feasibility study of nanoscale manufacturing.
            > >
            > > On NASA's website, [an article] titled "The Next
            > > Giant Leap"
            > > highlights the work NIAC is funding in
            > > nanotechnology research, and
            > > includes a description of the 112-page report Chris
            > > presented to them.
            > > We congratulate Chris on this much-deserved
            > > recognition.
            > >
            > >
            > http://crnano.typepad.com/crnblog/2004/09/niac_funds_crn_.html
            > > http://tinyurl.com/94luq
            > >
            > >
            > > CRN Goes to Vermont
            > >
            > > In late July, CRN principals Mike Treder and Chris
            > > Phoenix were
            > > invited to participate in a [special workshop] on
            > > 'geoethical
            > >
            > === message truncated ===
            >
            >
            > que sera sera....
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