35 innovators under 35: Computing and internet

35 innovators under 35: Computing and internet

In the long term, such photonic circuits could help us approach or perhaps even surpass widely accepted limits in computing. Theoretical work in photonic information processing suggests that light can be converted to heat and vice versa, which opens up some remarkable opportunities for all-optical energy storage—essentially batteries made out of photons—and alternative computing architectures. 

Many of these projects are still happening primarily in the academic realm, but we are slowly moving toward building larger-scale, more fully integrated systems. If we can continue thinking about how these ideas can be integrated into full computing systems, the coming years should see even more progress away from traditional chips and toward an array of different forms of computing. 

Starting in July, Prineha Narang is the Howard Reiss Chair Professor in Physical Sciences at University of California, Los Angeles (and was a 35 Innovators honoree in 2018).