Prepare for the Nanorobots, Futurist Says

Speaking at the Business 4Site conference, Ray Kurzweil, a leading inventor and best-selling author, portends a future where rapid pace of computing growth mingles with advances in miniaturization and biotechnology.

LOS ANGELES—Internet-connected nanorobots that travel within our bodies. Virtual assistants that appear before our eyes. Virtual worlds that intermingle with our senses.

Welcome to the future according to Ray Kurzweil.

The inventor and author, who wrote the recent best-seller "The Age of Spiritual Machines," offered a glimpse of his predictions for technologys evolutions during a keynote at the opening day of the Business 4Site conference here Tuesday. (Business 4Site is produced by Ziff Davis Media Inc., the parent company of eWEEK.com.)

Technological innovation is growing exponentially, with metrics such as price/performance, capacity and bandwidth doubling every year, Kurzweil said. Couple that growth with a similar pace of advancement in fields such as nanotechnology and biotechnology, and a future filled with microscopic robots replacing red blood cells or a lifelike representation of a person appearing at a conference becomes possible, he explained.

"The future of information technology will deeply influence every aspect of our society," Kurzweil said.

/zimages/2/28571.gifBill Gates charts computings future. Click here to see his vision.

While the IT industry focuses on Moores Law and its dictum that the number of transistors on an integrated circuit board doubles every year or so, such a rate of innovation extends beyond chips, said Kurzweil, also the founder of Kurzweil Technologies Inc.

A similar pace of advancements is occurring across technology—from telecommunications to the Internet.

Next page: Growth rate in computing power.