If you thought storage was trending towards solid-state mediums and that magnetic drives were edging out, you may want to pause a moment. A slew of scientific breakthroughs in magnetism as it relates to storage and computing were announced last year.\nThe multiple Eureka moments could change how we compute and perform Internet of Things and might, in one case, introduce magnet-driven neural networks \u2014 which is computing that mimics how the brain processes things.\n3D magnets\nFirst on the list was last November's announcement of the invention of 3D nano-magnets that shift data transfers from traditional two dimensions to three dimensions. This kind of add-on could significantly increase storage and processing functions, say its inventors at the University of Cambridge in an article published by Sinc.\nIt\u2019s \u201cthe development of a completely new generation of magnetic devices,\u201d says Amalio Fern\u00e1ndez-Pacheco. They \u201ccan store move and process information in a very efficient way by exploiting the three dimensions of space.\u201d\nMagnetic system turns heat into motion\nAlso announced late last year, this time by Exeter University, is a new magnetic system that turns heat into motion. The physics-based transformation could turn out to be a practical way of running minuscule IoT device actuators and sensors. Not only that, but the design could also be used in magnetic memory, where information could be stored via laser-driven heating \u2014 the lasers write the memory with heat.\nThe device, known as a thermal ratchet, is 200 times thinner than the human hair and uses \u201cfrustrated magnetic materials.\u201d It\u2019s known as \u201cartificial spin ice,\u201d says Sebastian Gliga, lead author of the study and Marie Curie Research Fellow at the University of Glasgow,\u00a0in an article published by University of Exeter.\nCopying the brain\nA third invention, also announced last November, is a way to write magnetic patterns onto nanowires. That could aid computers in functioning by mimicking the human brain, claim its researchers at Imperial College London.\n\u201cWith this new writing method, we open up research into training these magnetic nanowires to solve useful problems,\u201d says Dr. Jack Gartside, first author and a member of the physics department at Imperial College London, in an article published by the school. \u201cIf successful, this will bring hardware neural networks a step closer to reality.\u201d\u00a0\nSaving power using low-power magnetic storage\nAlso, don\u2019t forget the couple of inventions I wrote about last summer: Low-power magnetic storage may be obtainable through a kind of magnetic rotation called chirality \u2014 the magnetic waves rotate in a vortex a bit like how water drains through a plug, which the inventors claim saves power.\nAnd then there\u2019s also the magnetism breakthrough in MRAM, which promises to \u201creduce bit-reading and -writing energy consumption by a factor of 10,000 or more.\u201d According to its creators at the\u00a0Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology, the MELRAM variant uses magnetism in two binary-directions.\nHarnessing magnetic disturbances\nFinally, one can add to the list a new way to harness small disturbances in magnetic orientation. It rounds out the pack of new technologies. The \u201cswirls\u201d of magnetic disruptions, called \u201cskyrmions,\u201d MIT News wrote in October, can store data for a long time without one having to add energy.\nWe\u2019ve known about them for a while, but they\u2019ve not been able to be ordered before \u2014 a requisite for data storage. \u201cThis is a significant breakthrough,\u201d says Geoffrey Beach, MIT associate professor of materials science and engineering.