Bacterial super computers

More evidence the Singularity is nigh! Mere bacteria being given super human processing Rain Man-esque power:

Scientists have taken another step towards biological computing, with the creation of logic gates from gut bacteria and DNA.While something similar’s been done before, the team says its logic gates behave more like the standard electronic version.

All microprocessors do is add. That’s it. Your entire computer works on the back of what is basically an electronic abacus. Which is why questions about sentience and all that are so fascinating when applied to digital computers. So I wouldn’t worry too much about computerized bacterial colonies taking over the world just yet. I would instead keep worrying about the oxygen-burning bacterial collectives already here, specifically, the bipedal metazoan ones with giant bulbs of nerve tissue at the top.


  1. The Lorax says

    Sure would be cool if we could build an organism to provide computational power, one that would grow if you fed it a nutrients, and even replicate itself for free.

    … I’m tempted to shove a cheeseburger into my motherboard…

  2. cyberax says

    Well, and all our cells do is burn carbohydrates. So we just need to light a match and it would be like creating artificial life, right?

    Another nitpick: no, computers do not run on top of the abacus, you can’t build a computer which only uses addition. However, you _CAN_ build a computer from NAND gates (which are also sometimes called ‘universal gates’).

  3. says

    I dunno much about it, but my cyber buddies claim addition leads to everything else. Multiplication is repetitive addition, division repetitive addition of negatives, with that you can do trig functions and using Newton’s method or variations you can do transcendentals, etc. Assigning characters by binary/hex, animzation is all number crunching, and so on … isn’t everything in a digital PC ultimately addition then?

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