Not a nanonyte - this one's a nanobug. ...is a term invented for nano sized robots used for a variety of purposes in the A Vested Interest series of books. They first appeared in 2011, used by Liu in the second book of the series, 'Dark Secrets'.
- They are used inside the human body to clear (and cause) obstructions.
- They are used to create 3-D objects (think Star Trek replicators and 3-D printers).
- As an invisible dust they are used to spy on people.
- They are used to create a defensive force field.
- In 'Leap of Faith', book five of the series, they are used to make things invisible.
- In one of the books, Consequences, some prisoners are tortured and killed using nanonytes, after they made the mistake of getting caught.
- In space they are used to create a huge telescope mirror, miles across, to explore for habitable planets.
Nanonytes can be programmed for a particular function. They self-assemble more of themselves as required, taking and adapting materials from their environment to do so. To prevent a 'grey dust' scenario where they would convert the entire world to nanonytes, there is a limit to the number of times they may replicate without further programming.