If you know someone who likes things that last, Outliers could have found the perfect gift.
A Santa Fe, N.M., company is party to a plan to shrink a copy of the entire human genome—all 3.2 billion base pairs—and write it in microscopically small letters on a set of five, 6-inch nickel disks so tough the data could last 10,000 years.
The micro-engraving technology, first developed at Los Alamos National Laboratory, was designed initially for backing up vital digital files vulnerable to the electromagnetic pulses of a nuclear exchange. Now, if this genome copying project is successful, if they start dropping the big ones, maybe some smart roaches some day will find our genetic blueprints to brew us back into existence.
The pitch by Norsam Technologies, doing business as the NanoRosetta storage system, is to raise $100,000 on Kickstarter, a website for grass-roots fundraising. That's enough to produce 100 sets of the disks, each with a complete genome.