We are running the Nano-Net 2008 Conference and Workshop on Nanosensors: Self-Organization and Swarm Robotics. Nano-Net 2008 runs from Sept. 14-16 in Boston this year. This will be an interactive event with some of the top researchers in the field in attendance. We will use this blog to extend discussions on the topic beyond the conference.
We are looking for relevant questions for discussions during the conference and the workshop. Conference attendees can use the free Wi-Fi in the conference facility to post questions, but we welcome questions from members who are unable to participate locally. We also hope that this discussion will continue after the conference ends.
Please respond to this posting a comment using the form at the bottom of this post. Answers to the questions posted here will be summarized and posted on the blog. You can direct your questions to specific individuals on the conference/workshop program as well. The programs can be accessed at:
Conference/Workshop Theme: Nanosensors are slated to revolutionize several fields including medicine, harsh environment sensing and chip fabrication. Nanosensors however are small, weak, and fragile and lack the power to work independently due to limited power and communication range. However, by self-assembling into larger nano-structures or complex systems, they have the ability to exhibit sophisticated behavior. Nature exhibits several instances where seemingly simple organisms self-organize to exhibit sophisticated emergent behavior, also called swarm intelligence. For instance, an ant is quite a simple animal whose behavioral repertoire is limited from 10 to 40 elementary behaviors. However, in groups, they can exhibit sophisticated collective behavior where there are clear divisions of labor. Some ants collect food while others take care of the eggs, repair the nest, or protect the anthill against threats, while the queen lays the eggs. None of the animals grasp the big picture, but the entire colony collectively contributes to its success. It is necessary to understand such self-organization in the context of nanosensors to take advantage of the wide spectrum of applications where nanosensors can be deployed. These advancements will lead to realization of the concept of distributed self-organized colonies (swarms) of robots that can perform complex tasks that humans have difficulty in performing. This year’s workshop brings together the expertise of researchers from the fields of nano-robotics and swarm intelligence for the purposes of sharing and generating ideas that can bring together advances in these fields to improve nanosensor network research. The workshop will have specific deliverables.
~Sanjay Goel & Stephen Bush