A CDE Definition
A potential future memory technology that stores data at the molecular level. Using lasers and the bacteriorhodopsin protein molecule, the W. M. Keck Center for Molecular Electronics has built a molecular memory device holding several hundred megabytes. The advantage of such a memory is its small size and stability. It holds its content without power. See molecular electronics.
Biological-based electronics. Developing circuits that are "grown" may seem far fetched, but research shows that a "biocomputer" might be possible in 25 years. From living plants, researchers have isolated "photosynthetic reaction centers" (PRCs). These microminiature photovoltaic systems change their state when exposed to light, and the states can be measured. In 2001, German scientists grew a network of neurons (brain cells) from a snail onto a semiconductor chip. Electricity was made to travel through the neuron net and back out. Stay tuned! Or, rather, have your grandchildren stay tuned!
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