Warning! Nanos!

Those of you who’ve read Specials may remember a certain scene involving extremely dangerous nano-scale weapons (also known as “nanos”). Although weaponized nanos don’t exist yet, nanotech is real, and the potential for dangerous nanos abounds.

In this context, “nanotechnology” means any widget that’s between 1 to 100 nanometers across. A nanometer is a billionth of a meter, so we’re talking down at the level of molecules and even atoms. At present, most nanos are used in fairly boring ways: sunscreen, paint, varnish. But in the near future, nanotech will no doubt be used in computing, mechanical design, and (because it’s what we upright monkeys are best at) killing each other.

Luckily, the good people at Etc Group have started a competition for a Nano Warning symbol, like the biohazard trefoil or other hazard symbols. So when anyone stumble across a defunct nano weapon like Shay and Tally did in Specials, they’ll know not to mess with it.

Here are my three faves so far:


I like the spider-y one, because it plays on atavistic fears of small crawly things. The broken hexagon refers to the carbon structures that most nanos use. The magnifying glass with a ! will probably look quaint 300 hundred years from now, but it amuses me.

Click here to see the rest and vote for your favorites. The molecular structure you save may be your own.

(Via BoingBoing)

187 thoughts on “Warning! Nanos!

  1. If we get on a unautherized site at my school, it sends an Email to the teacher telling her: What site, What computer, and how long they’ve been on

  2. Wow that’s tough. Yeah, I’ve had guy friends. My best guyfriend Vincent moved a couple months ago. I was sad, but now I’m not, cuz I like to be HAPPY!And thanks Lizzy-wa for the fexcellent grade!I had to do a stupid History project. I was really bored in class and I already finished my homework so I was flipping through the History book cuz I didn’t have anything to read and It’s eighth grade History so its really boring United States History, but on page 603 there’s a timeline thing in the early 1900s. What do I think of now when I see 1918? EDWARD duh! Yeah and so I was kinda dissapointed when I saw that they didn’t recognize the most fabulous person ever’s birthday.HaHaHa!!! J.K. but that really happened. HeHeHe!!!
    Here’s a new one: IDCIIC!: I Don’t Care If I’m Crazy!
    I don’t know, I think it’s too long.Oh Well!
    Team Edward/Zane/Jonathon
    See Ya!

  3. Where is everyone? Oh yes yes yes me is very impatient and talking like a 2nd grader.HeHeHe!!!~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~***************************************************************************************************************************************************************^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^————————————————————————————-
    That’s what happens when you give someone who is as bored as me a keyboard.LOL x infinity!

  4. yeah, my school’s anti-Wikipedia too.
    i got into a big argument with my english teacher today about how it actually is accurate, and they’re done studies and everything.

    see, i am one of those people who’s always like, friends with guys i like. as in, i like him. we get to be friends. he never aknowledges me and i never make a move, cuz i’m like that.

  5. Yeah, I’ve done that before.I had to be careful though, cuz he was really cute, and once my friend caught me just staring at him, but thank God he didn’t notice. I haven’t talked to him in like a year though cuz we went to different schools.

  6. Been there, done that. I got to be really good friends with this one guy…we will call him a and me and a started hanging out together at this one chick…my now ex best friend b’s house and we would like play basketball and stuff and have a lot of fun and then we would just chill out and talk in a tree and yes i know that sounds weird but for some reason we were fascinated with climbing this tree in b’s yard and sitting up there and talking. so one night we’re up in the tree and b starts talking about who she likes and then suggests that we go around and say 2 peoples we like…(and b knew i liked a)…and so b starts, then it gets to me and at this point i want to shove b out of the tree cuz thats how pissed i am at her. and so i turn all red and he says o i think i know. and then i’m like uhhhhhhhhhhhhhh….yeaaahhhh….i likeeeee ummmmmmm you. and then it was his turn and he started naming a bunch of girls and then he was like “i like you and b too….i have like a huge list of girls.” it was all very awkward and scary. and to this day i still resent b for ever saying that…i mean seriously she knew i didn’t want him to know and she asked it anyway just to embarress me.

  7. Gosh Kay-wa I would’ve lied through my teeth and said that I didn’t like him.I guess that just shows how gutless I am.
    See Ya!

  8. #
    156 Tally & Zaneon 18 Jan 2008 at 1:48 pm

    ME = BORED!!!: How could you be bored when you are on Scott Westerfeld’s blog??

  9. hahah! my favorite is the one with the little ladybug and the wrench!
    i have a soft spot for ladybugs,
    since i used to collect them when i was little,
    and acidently kill them…

  10. *fondly remembers Fred, her own pet ladybug, who was an amazing gymnast, and very loyal. Zane remembers putting Fred out on the rosebush every morning, and coming home from school to find that Fred was still there to greet her. Oh, how Zane loved little Fred*

    True memory. I had that ladybug for about… 2 weeks. I could recognize her/him because he/her was an orangish color with no spots. Very easy to identify. (Don’t make fun of me! I was in 5th grade and desperate for a pet!)

  11. Hahaha! I wrote he/her instead of he/she. I am so amazing, sometimes. My skill astounds me. *bangs head on wall*

  12. you’re right Olivia-wa, it kinda does lol. i love when people talk about the ring, cuz samara’s my name and it freaks people out. samara really means guarded by god and it’s also those helicopter things that fall of the trees.

    lol i’m going on a rant about my name

  13. I would have to agree with Scott-la, the spider-y one is the best. The rest look too ……. cute? That doesn’t seem like the right word, but it needs to conjure up scary thoughts. Nanos are dangerous people, so don’t mess with them. Well some are fine, such as ones used in sunscreen, but soon enough HUNGER IN NANO FORM will come, and we will all die, all because they didn’t put a scary enough sign on it!


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