Whether it was the invention of the radio at the beginning of the 20th century or the advent of smartphones in the mid-to-late 2000s, technological revolutions have fundamentally shaped the era with which they are associated. Yet, according to Susan Hockfield, technological advances are only the half of it. It is instead the combination of technological innovation with biological research that are producing and will produce the most revolutionary products and technological advances of our time. Her new book, The Age of Living Machines: How Biology Will Build the Next Technology Revolution, describes some of the most exciting developments in this field, including mind-reading bionic limbs, cancer-detecting nanoparticles, virus-built batteries and protein-based water filters.
What is even more impressive is the fact that many of these technologies were the result of Hockfield’s own foresight and tenacity. As the first female president of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Hockfield was a key advocate for interdisciplinary research and breaking down borders between fields. Join us for an optimistic conversation about how these living machines may help us overcome some of the greatest humanitarian, medical and environmental challenges of our time.
Hockfield photo by David Sella
May 21, 2019
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