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Small World

Nanotechnology will soon mean big changes in the way you do business.

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This story appears in the March 2003 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Rick Snyder, CEO of Ardesta, a holding firm in Ann Arbor,, has a mantra: "Smaller, faster, better,cheaper." He's talking about "small tech," aterm that describes , microtechnology andmicro-electromechanical systems (MEMS). Nanotechnology inparticular has gotten a lot of coverage as big companies likeHewlett-Packard and Intel have begun to introduce nano intocomputing.

It's hard to pinpoint exactly what small tech is because ithas so many wide-ranging applications. "I would call it moreof a revolution than an evolution," says Snyder.Nanotechnology, for example, deals with matter at an atomic andmolecular level--that is, with matter often described as being lessthan the width of a human hair in size. It's appearing ineverything from stainproof coating for fabrics to scratch-resistantcoating for eyeglasses to miniscule computer chip circuits from HPLabs.

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