David Kirkpatrick

July 3, 2009

Photonic computing

Filed under: Science, Technology — Tags: , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 3:16 pm

Via KurzweilAI.net — There’s a lot of research going on for a next generation computer that moves beyond transistors and silicon — quantum computing is probably the big cheese in the race — but the concept of laser-based computers might just be the most interesting, and in a space of very cool tech possibly the most interesting.

Laser light switch could leave transistors in the shade
NewScientist Tech, July 1, 2009

An optical transistor that uses one laser beam to control another could form the heart of a future generation of ultrafast photonic computers, overcoming the speed limits with wires, say Swiss researchers.

Using a green beam to switch an orange output beam from weak to strong is analogous to the way a transistor‘s control electrode switches a current between “on” and “off” voltages, and hence the 0s and 1s of digital data. And doing it with a single molecule means billions could be packed into future photonic chips.

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