= N =
nanotechnology /nan'-oh-tek-no`l*-jee/ n.
hypothetical fabrication technology in which objects are designed
and built with the individual specification and placement of each
separate atom. The first unequivocal nanofabrication experiments
took place in 1990, for example with the deposition of individual
xenon atoms on a nickel substrate to spell the logo of a certain
very large computer company. Nanotechnology has been a hot topic
in the hacker subculture ever since the term was coined by K. Eric
Drexler in his book "Engines of Creation" (Anchor/Doubleday,
ISBN 0-385-19973-2), where he predicted that nanotechnology could
give rise to replicating assemblers, permitting an exponential
growth of productivity and personal wealth (there's an authorized
http://www.foresight.org/EOC/index.html). See also
blue goo, gray goo, nanobot.
--The Jargon File version 4.3.1, ed. ESR, autonoded by rescdsk.