January 31, 2001   

   Store globally, access locally
The Internet is partly responsible for the swelling ocean of data people produce day after day, but the Internet could also provide the means for staying on top of it. A scheme that calls for scattering data around the world could protect your information from power outages and keep it handy wherever you go. Full story
Ordinary light could drive quantum computers
Researchers at Los Alamos show that photons are sturdy enough to use as quantum computers. Even better, you don't need the most exotic equipment to do it.

Color deepens data storage
With so many colors in the world, why store data in the equivalent of black and white? Think of the possibilities if each dimple on a CD could store four or even eight bits instead of just one.

Motor goes all the way around
Using a series of magnets inside a sphere, researchers have made a motor that can turn as far as it wants in any direction. The result could be better robot arms or even a computer mouse that moves you.

Switch channels atom beams
Controlling the flow of water, electricity and light is old hat, but directing beams of atoms is another matter. A beam splitter lets researchers not only send atoms down a forked path, but direct the traffic too.

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