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EVER had the feeling something is missing? If so, you're in good company. Dmitri Mendeleev did in 1869 when he noticed four gaps in his periodic table. They turned out to be the undiscovered elements scandium, gallium, technetium and germanium. Paul Dirac did in 1929 when he looked deep into the quantum-mechanical equation he had formulated to describe the electron. Besides the electron, he saw something else that looked rather like it, but different. It was only in 1932, when the electron's antimatter sibling, the positron, was sighted in cosmic rays that such a thing was found to exist. Except that they do. Within the past couple of years, memristors have morphed from obscure jargon into one of the hottest properties in physics. They've not only been made, but their unique capabilities might revolutionise consumer electronics. More than that, though, along with completing the jigsaw of electronics, they might solve the puzzle of how nature makes that most delicate and powerful of computers - the brain.