Interview: Stan Williams – nanotechnology

Stan Williams Stan Williams is one of the four Senior Fellows at HP Labs – the most distinguished technologists in the company. He runs the Information and Quantum Systems Lab and his research focus is on what is called CeNSE – the Central Nervous System for the Earth.

Nanotechnology Stan is looking over the horizon to developments in nanotechnology – the control of matter on the atomic and molecular scale, where dimensions are measured in nanometers. One nanometer is one billionth of a meter – way smaller than the proverbial width of an ant’s leg. In fact, the comparative size of a nanometer to a meter is the same as that of a marble to the size of the earth. Or another way of putting it: a nanometer is the amount a man’s beard grows in the time it takes him to raise the razor to his face!

I asked Stan to describe his research interests in the terms that my Mum could understand. Click on the podcast icon below to hear what Stan says about his research. It could revolutionize human interaction with the earth as profoundly as the Internet has revolutionized personal and business interactions. Hear him describe a possible future world where trillions of nanoscale sensors and actuators are embedded in the environment, monitoring every breath we take, every move we make. And how concerns for our privacy in this world are addressed.

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