David Kirkpatrick

August 20, 2010

Is the US in danger of losing its nanotech hegemony?

Via KurzweilAI.net — Not just yet, but there are a number of countries putting money and other resources into nanotechnology. One place the United States could stand to see a lot of improvement is commercializing the nanotech developments going on right now.

From the link:

U.S. Risks Losing Global Leadership in Nanotech

August 20, 2010 by Editor

The U.S. dominated the rest of the world in nanotech funding and new patents last year, as U.S. government funding, corporate spending, and VC investment in nanotech collectively reached $6.4 billion in 2009. But according to a new report from Lux Research, countries such as China and Russia launched new challenges to U.S. dominance in 2009, while smaller players such as Japan, Germany and South Korea surpassed the United States in terms of commercializing nanotechnology and products.

The report, titled “Ranking the Nations on Nanotech: Hidden Havens and False Threats,” compares nanotech innovation and technology development in 19 countries in order to provide government policymakers, corporate leaders and investors a detailed map of the nanotech’s international development landscape. Overall, the report found global investment in nanotech held steady through the recent financial crisis, drawing $17.6 billion from governments, corporations and investors in 2009, a 1% increase over 2008’s $17.5 billion. Only venture capitalists dialed back their support, cutting investments by 43% relative to 2008.

“Part of what motivated our research was the emerging possibility that ambitious new government funding in Russia and China represented a threat to U.S. dominance in nanotech innovation,” said David Hwang, an Analyst at Lux Research, and the report’s lead author. “But while the field certainly gained momentum in both countries as a result of the increased funding, both countries have economic and intellectual property protection issues that prevent them from being real threats just yet.”

To uncover the most fertile environments for technology developers, buyers, and investors, Lux Research mapped the nanotech ecosystems of select nations, building on earlier reports published from 2005 through 2008. In addition to tracking fundamentals, such as the number of nanotech publications and patents issued, the report also inventoried direct and indirect spending on nanotech from government, corporate and venture sources. Among its key observations:

  • The U.S. continues to dominate in nanotech development… for now. Last year saw the U.S. lead all other countries in terms of government funding, corporate spending, VC investment, and patent issuances. But its capacity to commercialize those technologies and leverage them to grow the economy is comparatively mediocre. U.S. competitiveness in long-term innovation is also at risk, as the relative number of science and engineering graduates in its population is significantly lower than it is in other countries.
  • Other countries stand to get more bang for their nanotech buck. Japan, Germany, and South Korea continued their impressive trajectories from 2008, earning top spots in publications, patents, government funding, and corporate spending. Compared to the U.S., all three also remain more focused on nanotech and appear more adept at commercializing new technology. The relative magnitude of the technology manufacturing sectors in these three countries are the world’s highest, meaning their economies stand to benefit the most from nanotech commercialization.
  • Russian and Chinese investment in nanotech yields slow progress. While both governments launched generous nanotech investment programs last year, the technology hasn’t gained momentum in either country’s private sector, both of which have a history of skimping on R&D. The relative lack of momentum was further underscored by the abysmal number of new nanotech patents for either country last year.

“Ranking the Nations on Nanotech: Hidden Havens and False Threats,” is part of the Lux Nanomaterials Intelligence service. Clients subscribing to this service receive ongoing research on market and technology trends, continuous technology scouting reports and proprietary data points in the weekly Lux Research Nanomaterials Journal, and on-demand inquiry with Lux Research analysts.

More info: Lux Research

August 12, 2008

Georgia and Russia

Filed under: Politics — Tags: , , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 1:01 pm

I’ve avoided blogging on the subject to now, but I’ve found a very pragmatic and sensible list on this issue at Cato-at-Liberty.

Here’s a solid center-right/libertarian take on the issue by Ben Friedman.

From the link:

  • That neocons like Kristol are attacking the Bush’s administration’s reaction to this crisis shows how far the administration has evolved towards pragmatism. John McCain, on the other hand, continues to reveal a preference for military confrontation over safety.
  • August 3, 2008

    RIP — Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

    Filed under: Arts, et.al. — Tags: , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 7:50 pm

    One of the Russian giants of literature has passed on.

    Godspeed Aleksandr.

    February 11, 2008

    Russia flexes its air power

    Filed under: et.al., Media, Politics — Tags: , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 6:14 pm

    Here’s a little reminder we are just one extended hot action away from re-instituting the draft.

    From the article:

    WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. fighter planes intercepted two Russian bombers, including one that buzzed an American aircraft carrier in the western Pacific during the weekend, The Associated Press has learned. A U.S. military official says that one Russian Tupolev 95 flew directly over the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz twice, at a low altitude of about 2,000 feet, while another bomber circled about 58 miles out. The official was speaking on condition of anonymity because the reports on the flights were classified as secret.The Saturday incident, which never escalated beyond the flyover, comes amid heightened tensions between the United States and Russia over U.S. plans for a missile defense system based in Poland and the Czech Republic.Such Russian bomber flights were common during the Cold War, but have been rare since.The bombers were among four Russian Tupolev 95s launched from Ukrainka in the middle of the night, including one that Japanese officials say violated their country’s airspace over an uninhabited island south of Tokyo.

    Our military is woefully overextended and armament depleted by the Iraq exercise. It’s not surprising other nations are testing our mettle and response.