DNA origami: Paul Rothemund on TED.com

Paul Rothemund compares his work to “casting a spell” — and it does seem akin to magic. By writing a set of instructions, he can cause bits of DNA to fold themselves into a smiley face, a star, a triangle. Sure, it’s a stunt, but it’s also a fascinating window into the possibility of self-assembly at the smallest of scales. In other words: today a smiley face, tomorrow a micro-microprocessor. (Recorded March 2007 in Monterey, California. Duration: 05:11.)

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