K. Eric Drexler is a researcher concerned with emerging technologies and their consequences for the future. In the mid 1980s, he introduced the term 'nanotechnology' to describe atomically precise molecular manufacturing systems and their products. Advanced nanotechnologies will make possible many dreams (and nightmares) first articulated in the literature of science fiction.
After presenting the basic concepts of molecular manufacturing in a scientific paper (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 1981), he wrote Engines of Creation (1986) to introduce a broad audience to the prospect of advanced nanotechnologies -- their nature, promise, and dangers -- and Nanosystems (AAP 1992 Most Outstanding Computer Science Book) to provide a graduate-level introduction to the fundamental physical and engineering principles of the field.
He has lectured in the US, Europe, and Japan to audiences ranging from corporate research laboratories and the World Economic Forum to a satellite-linked network of elementary school classes. In support of U.S. federal policy development, he has provided presentations and briefings to (among others) the Senate Subcommittee on Science, Technology, and Space, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, and the Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
He is a founder and current Chairman of the Foresight Institute, a nonprofit educational organization established to help prepare for advanced technologies.