Nanotechnology And Cloud Computing Computer Science Essay

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Throughout its existence, humans have continuously seek knowledge about the world they live in. They have, through extensive studies and researches, learnt what goes on around them and how the discoveries can be used to improve their standard and quality of living. Humans have practically conquered everything its eyes can see by not only knowing how these matters function but also how to control and manipulate them with the sole aim of discovering their importance and usefulness to its continued existence. With these attitude and approach, we have made astounding discoveries that leads to inventions that have impacted positively on our standard of living and ultimately strengthened our determination of continued existence.

But how are we dealing with the impact and/or threat of what our eyes cannot see? This has been pondered on in practical terms by experts in all human endeavors and the fields of Medicine, Science & Technology and Manufacturing have been at the forefront of asking this big question. Hence, comes the emergence of nanotechnology.

This paper explores the world of Nanotechnology beginning with an insight on the emergence and origins and goes on to reveal its current state and possible future use. It also analyzes its immediate and projected social, economic and business impact.

1.2 Cloud Computing

A business organizations Information Technology (IT) strategy is shaped from its short and long term goals and objectives. In order to stay competitive in the world market, businesses are increasingly investing much more in IT infrastructure. This huge investments most times make it necessary for businesses to include IT as part of their core operations in terms structures, processes and people. Rather than maintaining focus on its core competency and business operation these organizations have to put in place a well structured IT department to manage its information systems. This will no doubt adds to the cost of doing business in very huge proportions and ultimately reduce their bottom line at the end of the day.

To forestall these complexities and reduce investment in IT infrastructure, Outsourcing has been at the forefront of proposals towards achieving this. But with the continued stability and standardization of the internet and web based services provision, some school of thought have now proposed that all information system services can be pulled from the internet. Hence the introduction of Cloud Computing.

This paper looks at Cloud Computing as an emerging technology. It looks at the origins, current and future use. It also analyzes its impact on people and businesses socially and economically.

2 Introduction

2.1 NANOTECHNOLOGY

Nanotechnology is the study of the controlling of matter on an atomic and molecular scale, in other words, Nanoscales which is one-billionth of a metre, gram or litres in measurement. The general aim is to attempt to directly control and manipulate these matter on the atomic scale in order to develop new materials that can be used for other discoveries and inventions.

The word Nano is originally a Greek word that means dwarf. It is used in the standard metric system for measurements of very small materials of which value is in the scale of one billionth of a meter, gram or litre (1/1,000,000,000). This means that if you take any item that measures one meter in length or thickness and you chop it down into one billion places, the size of one divisional unit is a nano meter.

It is estimated that nano materials averagely measure between 1 and 100 nanometers. This is like when you take a string of hair and you slice it into 800 places. Some scientific estimates have also revealed that a red blood cell is about 5,000nm in wide, a DNA molecule is 2.5nm wide and 10 hydrogen atoms arranged side by side measure 1nm. Invariably we are talking about very small materials that are impossible for either the human eyes or the most powerful microscope to see.

Sections of the following chapters of this document describe the technology and highlights its origins and current state. The paper will argue its social and economic impacts on people and businesses.

2.2 CLOUD COMPUTING

Cloud computing is an Internet based development and use of computer technology that enables users and developers to utilize services without the knowledge, expertise and control over the technology that offers them. The resources and services provided by this technology is scalable and mostly virtualized.

For businesses the capital expenditure on IT resources is already enormous and this technology offers somewhat a financial reprieve in acquiring computing power. Individual are also exposed to services for server based applications which ordinarily would have eluded them.

In order for this technology to be fully developed and standardized, certain crucial business areas such as Services Delivery, Law, Customer Service, Security, Grid Management and Control and virtual services commercialization must equally be developed to support this technology.

Chapter four describes what this technology is all about, its potential use, success and risk factors. Its business and social impact is also analysed.

3 Nanotechnology

Nanotechnology is the research and technology development at the atomic, molecular or macromolecular levels, in the length scale of approximately 1-100 nanometer range, providing a fundamental understanding of phenomena and materials at this scale and creating and using structures, devices and systems that have novel properties and functions because of their small size. (ENCC 2005).

Although there are diverse definitions depending on the field of discourse, the basic idea is that the technology is being used to study and develop materials at the molecular state and it is being projected to result in development of stronger, cheaper, tougher materials.

The term Nanotechnology was first introduced by the late Professor Norio Taniguchi in 1974, when he was referring to the ability to engineer materials at nanometer scales. This is precisely what the whole concept is all about which is the analysis, design, characterization, production and application of materials which also include devices and systems. (J. Ramsden 2005). Eric Drexler made known the possibility building machines on a molecular scale and spent a lot of time exploring and proofing the possibility of building mechanisms and systems right from the atomic level.

Currently, this technology is serving as a convergence point for experts from the fields of engineering, physics, chemistry and biology in that, it has all come down to understanding the nature of atoms and molecules in order to create endless possibilities and paradigm shifts in those fields and every other fields of human endeavor. For example in order to perform mechanical engineering on a Nano scale, we must understand the chemistry of materials and even in some cases the biology.

Currently, millions of researches are being undertaken using this technology to understand various materials used in many diverse fields in other to improve them or create new ones that never existed before. These kind of discoveries will eventually, in a very short time, lead to many new inventions especially in fields like Medicine, Science & Technology, where such discoveries are very much desired.

Fig (1)

Nanometric Illustrations

Nanotechnology is being carried out top-down and bottom-up. In the top-down approach, systems, mechanisms and structures are miniaturized to a nanometric scale. This has been the most frequent application of nanotechnology up to this point, in particular in the domain of electronics where miniaturization is most important. The bottom-up nanotechnology is however regarded as Materials Engineering or Molecular Manufacturing in that a nanometric structure such as a molecule can be processed and developed to create a larger mechanism or system. (ENCC 2005)

The direct, indirect and conceptual applications of nanotechnology include electronic and photonic circuits, high performance microscopes, ultraprecision machining, Nanobots, Surgery, Ultralight aircrafts, pharmaceuticals, universal manufacturing etc.

Fig (2). Some Direct, Indirect and conceptual applications of nanotechnology

There are ongoing research and developments going on as we speak in these areas and soon we will see this applications been offered as standard services and systems for commercial purpose. We have already attained the fourth generation Already it is being used in some application and its use is generally being controlled for example, the Military.

Fig (3). Timeline for the beginning of industrial prototyping and nanotechnology commercialization: Four overlapping generations of products and processes. This only shows that the exploitation of materials at the nanometres scale is a fundamental success factor for nanotechnology. It also shows that in the process of standardizing this technology, potential risks are abound and this risks will have to be identified and managed accordingly to achieve desired purpose.

3.1 Impact of Nanotechnology on Business

Success of Nanotechnology will have a direct impact on key industrial sectors. Few of those areas are Electronics & Semiconductors, Textiles, Energy, Food & Drug, Chemicals & Advanced Materials, Printing & Packaging, Automotive, Aerospace & Defense, Medical Devices & Therapeutics, Medical Diagnostics and many more.

The correct perception is that all businesses will be directly or indirectly impacted. New markets will be developed and exploited and new skills and professions will also emerge.

Nanotechnology will touch all aspect of economics: wages, employment, purchasing; pricing, capital, exchange rates, currencies, markets, supply and demand. This technology will drive economic prosperity and at least be a an enabling factor in shaping productivity and global competitiveness (J. Canton 1999)

New exciting products that can already boast of an enormous waiting market will be developed and this will directly impact on employment and productivity.

Several Studies have also showed that leading countries are bracing up for this technologies because of its massive business potential, a study conducted by Office of Space and Advance Technology OES/SAT US State department reveals that that has been an increase in government investment on research, development and standardization of this technology: Fig 4 shows

Fig (4)

3.2 Impact of Nanotechnology on Society

The social impact of this technology will be immediately felt on health care. There is now intensive research going on to find a cure for cancer. It is projected that Nanotechnology could slash the cost of breast cancer treatment by 39% and add an average of seven years' to patients lives. (Lux Research 2007)

Nanotechnology will have an immediate positive impact in developing countries especially in the areas of basic needs such as Electricity, Water, Shelter and Agriculture. These basic amenities will not only be provided but will be a lot less expensive to acquire. Thus the standard of living in these countries will be impacted to a very great extent.

Fig (4)

In developed countries, the quality of existing amenities and infrastructure will be greatly improved and new inventions that shapes the way we live, work and play will be introduced thus improving standard of living. In the Energy sector, the technology will be at the forefront of development of renewable and clean energy through building of a new generation of solar cells, hydrogen fuel cells and hydrogen storage systems. Other possible areas of impact will be in Disease diagnosis and screening, Drug delivery systems, Air pollution remediation, Health monitoring and pest control (ScienceDaily 2005)

4 Cloud Computing

This is a computing paradigm which aim is to deliver a market oriented information technology service through the internet. In this case subscribers of these services will be offered the whole range of IT applications and services in such a way that the burden of having the knowledge, expertise and control of the technology is completely taken away from them.

Cloud computing technology provides the architecture of creating service and market oriented environments by leveraging on existing technologies such as virtual machines and grid technology and applying strategies in market-based resource management, customer-driven service management, computational risk management to sustain SLA oriented resource allocation. The end result will be the provision of a virtual and scalable IT service for business and private individuals. (R. Buyya, C.S. Yeo, S. Venugopal, 2008).

The whole concept is to view computing as a utility service just like Electricity, Water and Gas which can be provided anytime a consumer needs them. This is made possible with the development and advancement of the internet. IT practitioners are currently undergoing a lot of research and development towards the provision of applications that can be used by billons of users at the same time. Thus it is being viewed as a potential billion-pounds business opportunity and companies are already repositioning themselves to be part of it.

Fig (5) Shows various paradigms being explored to provide IT as a Utility service

The Market-oriented cloud architecture will expect specific Quality of Service to be supplied and maintained from the cloud providers and the these providers will also develop different service modules for all categories of users.

Thus, the providers regulate the demand and supply of cloud resources at market equilibrium (R. Buyya, C.S. Yeo, S. Venugopal, 2008). Figure 6 shows a high level market-oriented cloud architecture

Fig (6)

However one of the critical success factors is Security. The internet, at present, cannot boast of being devoid of potential threats to the cloud environment. This only reveals the enormity of the stumbling block against this technology to be a fully developed, commercially viable venture.

4.1 Impact of Cloud Computing on Business

Business is where the impact of cloud computing be felt the greatest. Currently Business spend a lot to own IT infrastructure, employ IT staff and maintain both. This massively contribute to the high cost of doing business thus making the bottom line(Profit) which is profit very low. It is estimated that the cost of business could be easily as low as 5% when companies tap into cloud technology.

Fig(7)

Figure 7 Shows several sectors average share of the ICT budget as % of total costs. This actually represents the potential cost saved if these same companies embrace cloud technology.

This technology also impacts positively on business and job creation. Careful analysis of survey data reveals that in Europe there will be a net increase in job and business created on short and medium period considering there is a slow or fast adoption of the technology.

Fig(8) Shows Number of Additional Workers in some European Countries short term (1-5years).

Fig(9) Shows Number of Additional Workers in some European Countries medium term(5-10years).

But there is a bigger impact on business creation. The same study shows that potentially there will be more business created on a short and medium term.

Figure (10)

Business can also focus on its core business and procure laptops and desktops that will serve only as end terminals to the cloud systems.

4.2 Impact of Cloud Computing on Society

The social impact of this technology will be felt mostly in homes. Private homes can now access to computing power that big businesses and corporations do. This will impact on how indidual will have access and also deseminate information.

Also consumer based products and services will have more justification to find a way of reaching customers via the cloud media. Social networking services will develop new programmes that people can tap into. This can also be a platform on which Television can be broadcast on a fulltime basis.

5 Conclusions

The main contributions of this paper is to show that both Nanotechnology and Cloud Computing are some of leading emerging technology that will have full developed and being in use before the beginning of the next decade. Going by the level of research and developments being carried out by governments, institutions and organizations, the stake on the future of these technologies is gradually building up year-in, year-out. This is due to the firm belief that within a period of 10-20years, Nanotechnology would have fully developed to the level of building Molecular structures that never existed right from atomic design level to give rise to new materials that will ultimately be used to develop new innovations and inventions. And with this same period Cloud Computing will be in use resulting into lower capital expenditures for companies and more computing power for subscribers.

Experts, businesses and government are now gradually repositioning themselves to be at an advantageous position despite the initial business, social and even cultural obstacles that will have to be surmounted to get these technologies up to commercial standard. So the world is set to see and experience imminently, the emergence of potentially mind blowing applications of these technologies. The world of Nanotechnology and Cloud Computing has only just begun, the best is yet to come.

6 Preference

Estonian Nanotechnology Competence Centre ENCC. (2005) What is Nanotechnology?. Available at: http://encc.ee/nanotechnology (Accessed: 15 Jan 2010).

Canton, J. (1999) The Strategic Impact of Nanotechnology on the Future of Business and Economics: CEO Institute for Global Futures

Ramsden, J.J. (2005) Nanotechnology Perception: Department of Advanced Materials, Cranfield University, Bedfordshire, United Kingdom.

ScienceDaily Science News (2005): Nanotechnology's Miniature Answers To Developing World's Biggest Problems Available at http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/05/050512120050.htm (Accessed: 15 Jan 2010).

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