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Discussion of the Essence# programming language, and related issues and technologies.

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Powerful Batteries That Assemble Themselves

The article Powerful Batteries That Assemble Themselves (MIT Technology Review) discusses a research project that has been using "viruses to assemble battery components that can store three times as much energy as traditional materials by packing highly ordered materials into a very small space."

The author of the article apparently believes that the major portent of this research is improved functionality of batteries. I strongly disagree.

It's not that better batteries aren't important. It's just that the ability to manufacture materials, substances, medicines, devices, tools and other artifacts using controlled molecular assembly is far more important. And the existence proof that viruses can be used to do controlled molecular assembly, at least in some cases, is a very significant milestone in the evolotion of human technical abilities. Compared to that, better batteries are a footnote.

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