“[Nanotechnology] is becoming real a lot faster than I was anticipating,” says Feynman Prize-winning researcher Stan Williams, whose work is profiled in this issue’s Q&A feature on page 6. “I was one of the people cautioning against over-hyping the area,” he adds.
Hype is not a problem for nanotechnology, said Charlie Harris, CEO of Harris & Harris, during a conversation in his company’s Manhattan offices. Harris should know: His company’s business is to investigate developers of “tiny tech” and determine which to support financially. He noted that overall, the technology is in an excellent position, with a favorable balance between publicity and substance. Both Harris and company president Doug Jamison concur that this substantive development and application will culminate in an opening of the IPO market.
All this confirms my excitement about my new opportunity at Small Times. My 9-year tenure as editor-in-chief of Sensors magazine gave me an excellent grounding in MEMS and nanotechnologies; I’m quite familiar with the impact of MEMS for sensing applications that leaders such as Joe Giachino at the University of Michigan and Roger Grace of Roger Grace Associates-both members of Sensors’ editorial advisory board-work to disseminate. I’m now eager to focus on these technologies exclusively, and for the entire range of applications. I feel this is the most exciting area of technology development going-and I’m certainly not alone in my beliefs.
My recent trip to New York City gave me the chance to meet a few more of small tech’s key observers and thinkers: Ed Moran, director of product innovation technology for Deloitte & Touche; Michael Holman, Ph.D., senior analyst at Lux Research; and Scott Livingston, managing director for Axiom Capital Management. Livingston, who introduced himself as Wall Street’s “king of nanotech,” asked me to imagine what it would be like to turn back the clock to the days before the Internet boom and, knowing what we know now, get involved on the ground level. That’s where we are now with nanotechnology, he said, noting that this arena will be every bit as influential as the Internet has become.
During the NanoQuebec conference (www.nanoquebec.ca) in Montreal on February 7, I got a glimpse into the boom that these important thinkers foresee. Neil Gordon, president of Canadian Nanobusiness Alliance Inc., exudes enthusiasm and is doing his best to see that Canada is a player in the coming nano revolution. Among the inspiring conference presentations was one by Stephane Robert, CEO of Raymor Industries. That week, Raymor had announced its move to a new location that enables high-volume production of single-walled carbon nanotubes-a critical step in mass adoption of this technology.
My calendar for the coming months is already full of plans, which will give me a front-row seat so that I can get a really close look at how small tech is developing. I look forward to sharing with you the information I gather from these events-and from important observers such as those I’ve mentioned-and helping you to understand how it might impact your business. In the meantime, I’d love to hear your views on the industry and on how Small Times can help you.
Barbara G. Goode is editor-in-chief of Small Times. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.