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« Nano Culture Clash | Main | America as Empire »

March 17, 2004

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Kurt

Yes, the quality of U.S. R&D is still better than that in Asia, but the gap is closing faster than what Greg Papadopoulos thinks, especially with regard to photonics and biotech.

Universities in Asia are also catching up with those in the U.S. and tend to be cheaper. The Indians now have some first rate I.T. and medical schools, which they did not have five years ago. Also, don't be so sure that the bright, young lads from Asia are always going to stay in the U.S. More and more of them are going back to start businesses, particularly in China.

My friends have the first biochip scanner start-up in Taiwan. Currently we have a rather low-end, but very cheap scanner. We will have a high-end scanner later this year. We may also get into micro-fluidic chip manufacturing, if we can get the fabrication cost low enough (these chips are usually disposable).

Keep in mind that the barriers of entry into biotech are much less than for semiconductors or even MEMS, which is one of the reasons why we are going into the field.

Bio-memetic or "wet" nanotechnology will be an outgrowth of the biotech industry. Hopefully, if we have made lots of dough by, say 2012-2015, the tools may be cheap and sophisticated enough that we might be able to develop a version of bio-memetic nanotech on our own (in Asia).

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