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fencinghuddleAI and Robotics

Nov 14, 2013 (3 years and 8 months ago)

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Definition

Nanofog is a highly advanced nanotechnology, which the Technocratic Union has developed as the
ultimate multi
-
purpose tool. It is a user
-
friendly, completely programmable
collection of avogadro
(6 x1023) numbers of nanomachines that can form a vast range of machinery, from wristwatches to
spaceships. It can simulate any material from gas, liquid, and solid, and it can even be used in
sufficient quantities to implement the u
ltimate in virtual reality. ITx researchers suggest that more
complex applications could include uploading human minds into planet
-
sized collections of Utility
Fog. Active, polymorphic material, Utility Fog can be designed as a conglomeration of 100
-
micron

robotic cells called foglets. Such robots could be built with the techniques of molecular
nanotechnology. Controllers with processing capabilities of 1000 MIPS per cubic micron, and
electric motors with power densities of one milliwatt per cubic micron ar
e assumed. Utility Fog
should be capable of simulating most everyday materials, dynamically changing its form and proper
ties, and forms a substrate for an integrated virtual reality and telerobotics. This paper will
examine the concept, and explore some o
f the applications of this material.


Introduction

Imagine a microscopic robot. It has a body about the size of a human cell and 12 arms sticking out
in all directions. A bucketful of such robots might form a "robot crystal" by linking their arms up
into a

lattice structure. Now take a room, with people, furniture, and other objects in it it's still
mostly empty air. Fill the air completely full of robots. With the right programming, the robots can
exert any force in any direction on the surface of any obje
ct. They can support the object, so that
it apparently floats in the air. They can support a person, applying the same pressures to the seat
of the pants that a chair would. They can exert the same resisting forces that elbows and fingertips
would receive
from the arms and back of the chair. A program running in the Utility Fog can thus
simulate the physical existence of an object.


Although this class of nanotechnology has been envisioned by the technocracy since early times,
and has been available to us f
or over twenty years, the name is more recent. A mundane scientist,
J. Storrs Hall provided an important baseline examination of the issues involved in the application
and design of Utility fog. He envisioned it as an active polymorphic material designed a
s a
conglomeration of 100
-
micron robotic cells or foglets, built using molecular nanotechnology. An
appropriate mass of Utility Fog could be programmed to simulate, to the same precision as
measured by human senses, most of the physical properties, such as

hardness, temperature, light,
of any macroscopic object, including expected objects such as tables and fans, but also materials
such as air and water. The major exceptions would be taste, smell, and transparency. To users, it
would seem like the Star Trek

Holodeck except that it would use atoms instead of holographic
illusions. It is an indication of the degree to which our science and technology have permeated
society that a non member could so accurately describe and visualise the way in which "Utility F
og"
operates.