Light as a new form of computing

McMaster researchers have developed a simple and highly novel form of computing by shining patterned bands of light and shadow through different facets of a polymer cube and reading the combined results that emerge. The material in the cube reads and reacts intuitively to the light in much the same way a plant would turn to the sun, or a cuttlefish would change the color of its skin.

light.png

The researchers are graduate students in chemistry supervised by Kalaichelvi Saravanamuttu, an associate professor of chemistry and chemical biology whose lab focuses on ideas inspired by natural biological systems. The researchers were able to use their new process to perform simple addition and subtraction questions. “These are autonomous materials that respond to stimuli and do intelligent operations,” says Saravanamuttu. “We’re very excited to be able to do addition and subtraction this way, and we are thinking of ways to do other computational functions.”

The form of computing is highly localized, needs no power source and operates completely within the visible spectrum. The technology is part of a branch of chemistry called nonlinear dynamics, and uses materials designed and manufactured to produce specific reactions to light.

Source

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s