Applied Technotopia

We scan the digital environment to examine the leading trends in emerging technology today to know more about future.

We have added a few indices around the site. Though we look to the future, we need to keep an eye on the present as well:

Recent Tweets @leerobinsonp

An interesting size comparison of China´s provinces comparing their GDP to those of other countries.


Chinese Provinces as Countries with Similar GDP

Source: youni89 (reddit)

A nanotech LED that is a single molecule.


Worlds Smallest LED is a Single Molecule

By coaxing light out of a single polymer molecule, researchers have made the world’s tiniest light-emitting diode.

This work is part of an interdisciplinary effort to make molecular scale electronic devices, which hold the potential for creating smaller but more powerful and energy-efficient computers. Guillaume Schull and his colleagues at the University of Strasbourg in France made the device with the conducting polymer polythiophene. They used a scanning tunneling microscope tip to locate and grab a single polythiophene molecule lying on a gold substrate. Then they pulled up the tip to suspend the molecule like a wire between the tip and the substrate.

The researchers report in the journalPhysical Review Letters that when they applied a voltage across the molecule, they were able to measure a nanoampere-scale current passing through it and to record light emitted from it.

(via First Single-Molecule LED - IEEE Spectrum)

An interesting look at the need for vertical farming on an industrial scale.


Growing food in population centres would increase yields, cut transport costs and overcome limited land area

Populations are growing and cities are booming – but could we soon see skyscrapers turned into centres for crop production? From Chicago warehouses to the south pole growth chamber in Antarctica, the concept of growing food indoors is catching on. Plant scientist Dr Erik Murchie, from the University of Nottingham, reveals how agriculture could be turned on its head.

What is vertical farming? It’s vertical because you are trying to grow more crops on a smaller land area and this usually means going upwards into buildings. It normally means that, instead of having a single layer of crops over a large land area, you have stacks of crops going upwards. It’s also associated with city farming and urban farming.

Why do we need it? It is the need to increase crop yield without increasing the land area for crops. If we can move some of that away from the countryside into the city, and get some of that food production close to the high concentrations of population, then we can make a real impact. People want to do it as well – it puts the food supply in the control of people living in the cities.

How high are we talking – skyscrapers? The beauty of vertical farming is that you can go as high as you want – if you have a system that works efficiently. The only risk with that is getting things that plants need like water and nutrients up there. And you need a way of getting your product out efficiently. (via Vertical farming explained: how cities could be food producers of the future | Science | The Observer)

What if a planet was doughnut shaped? Yes, it´s possible.


According to the laws of physics, a planet in the shape of a doughnut (toroid) could exist. Physicist Anders Sandberg says that such planets would have very short nights and days, an arid outer equator, twilight polar regions, moons in strange orbits and regions with very different gravity and seasons.

Read more: via io9

(via placeofpluto)

This day in space history - The first unassisted space walk.


Feb. 7th, 1984: Capt. Bruce McCandless II performs the first unassisted spacewalk

(via abcstarstuff)

Plans to grow stem cells in space may provide interesting results.

The view on Mars.


Gale crater, Mars. Last week.