Steampunk chip takes the heat: "That prompted Te-Hao Lee's team at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, to consider returning to mechanical logic. His team has developed a mechanical version of an inverter – the building block used to construct many types of logic gate, which themselves are a fundamental component of digital circuitry within computers. The device uses an arrangement of nanoscale levers instead of transistors. Like a telegraph operator's Morse key, these levers physically make and break contact to pass or block currents.
Application of a voltage makes the levers move under electrostatic attraction. At 550 °C Lee's team managed to get the inverter to switch on and off 500,000 times a second – performing a computation with each cycle."