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Archive for the ‘futurism’ category

Apr 20, 2015

20 technology quotes to inspire, amaze, and amuse

Posted by in categories: futurism, humor

Robert Szczerba | The Next Webscience“The advancement of technology generally evokes a range of emotions in people from all walks of life. Some view technology as a great evil that slowly diminishes our humanity, while others view it as a way to bring the world closer together and to help solve some of our greatest challenges.” Read more

Apr 18, 2015

Discover the Chemical Composition of Everyday Stuff…With a Smartphone Camera

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, futurism

By — SingularityHubhttp://cdn.singularityhub.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/hyperspectral-imaging-smartphone-12-1000x400.jpg

Our smartphones can do a lot—compute, pin down our location, sense motion and orientation, send and receive wireless signals, take photographs and video. What if you could also learn exactly what chemical components were present in any object? A new invention out of Israel aims to enable just that.

“The tricorder is no longer science fiction,” a recent Tel Aviv University (TAU) article declared. While a number devices in recent years have inspired similar comparisons, maybe this one is a little closer. Read more

Apr 14, 2015

Galactic Public Archives Presents: “New Narratives: Innovation for Jobs” the series

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, business, economics, education, engineering, environmental, futurism, government, innovation, robotics/AI, sustainability

‘New Narratives: Innovation for Jobs’ is a series by i4j (Innovation for Jobs) and the GPA exploring perspectives on important topics that will impact the future of work, jobs and employment.

About i4j: (iiij.org/i4j) Innovation for Jobs conferences bring together individuals from the public and private sectors to discuss the changing economy. “We engage in initiatives creating structures for developing shared language across silos. The starting point for any innovation is the creation of shared language, enabling stakeholders and change agents to interact horizontally.”

This film was created at the Mountain View 2015 i4j Conference. What are your hopes and fears about the future of meaningful work?

Continue reading “Galactic Public Archives Presents: "New Narratives: Innovation for Jobs" the series” »


Apr 8, 2015

Which Industry Will Produce the Next Henry Ford…Space? 3D Printing? Biotech?

Posted by in categories: futurism, human trajectories, innovation

By — SingularityHubhttp://cdn.singularityhub.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/shutterstock_157122776-e1427493682272-1000x400.jpg

Modern machines, powerful and clever, have enabled us to attempt seemingly impossible tasks, like traveling to the moon. Now, mere decades after Apollo’s computers guided us to the lunar surface, millions carry vastly more processing power in their pockets. What once seemed science fiction—it’s possible today.

The incredible acceleration and exponential development of machines is driven by our unsatisfiable curiosity and constant drive for progress. And there is little doubt the rate of change will continue as our curious minds push into the unknown. Read more

Apr 3, 2015

What If We Had Another Earth?

Posted by in categories: futurism, habitats, robotics/AI, space, space travel, strategy

A realistic and desirable human destination would produce a different space program than what we have today.

“We reach for new heights and reveal the unknown for the benefit of humankind.” This is NASA’s Vision Statement. This is NASA’s reason for being, its purpose. This is a vision statement for science and knowledge. This vision statement was crafted in a solar system that has only one planet that is environmentally friendly to human life.

Thanks to the ongoing search for exoplanets, we’ve identified several planets in our galaxy that are Earth sized and in their star’s habitable zone. Based on statistics, potentially billions more are waiting to be found. We are just now developing the technology to detect them. But we’re nowhere near having the technology needed to get to visit them. They are simply too far away.

Now here is where I’d like to pose a what if question: What if there was another habitable planet just like Earth, right here in our own solar system? What would Earth’s space programs look like, if anyone with a good telescope could look up and see another world with oceans, and continents, and clouds, and green forests? I think that it is safe to say that space programs in this imaginary solar system would be vastly different than ours today. This is conjecture, but it seems likely that the vision statement above, would be more in line with making that new world available for humanity.

Continue reading “What If We Had Another Earth?” »


Mar 28, 2015

The Feel-Good Switch: The Radical Future of Emotion

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, futurism

By — SingularityHubhttp://cdn.singularityhub.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/nerve-cells-1000x400.jpg

For most of the last century, the study of emotions was not considered serious science. The problem was subjectivity. Science is objective, rigorously objective. Emotions, though, are internal states, so the only way to study them is through subjective inference (essentially asking people to report how they feel). But — because people lie, because we often misinterpret our emotions and because comparisons between subjects, that is the depth of my anger versus your anger, is impossible to measure—there’s no objective data to be found.

Thus, until recently, the topic was taboo.

Read more

Mar 27, 2015

The Robotic Double-Edged Sword

Posted by in categories: automation, disruptive technology, economics, futurism, governance, robotics/AI, space, space travel, strategy

One of the things that I’ve always liked about Star Trek, is the concept of a galaxy spanning civilization. I would expect that before we ever get to that point, we will have a civilization that spans our solar system. Having a solar system spanning civilization has many advantages. It would give us access to resources many times greater than what is found here on Earth. It also provides the opportunity for civilization to expand, and in a worst case scenario, help ensure the survival of humanity.

Millions of people living in spacious environmentally controlled cities on planetary surfaces and in rotating cylinders in free space, with industry that extends from Mercury to the comets is to me, a grand vision worthy of an ambitious civilization. But trying to make that vision a reality will be difficult. The International Space Station has the capacity to house just six people and cost approximately $100B to put in place. With a little simple division, that works out to about $17B per inhabitant! If we used that admittedly crude figure, it would cost $17 trillion to build a 1,000 person habitat in Earth orbit. Clearly, the approach we used to build the ISS will not work for building a solar system civilization!

The ISS model relies on building everything on Earth, and launching it into space. A different model championed by Dr. Philip Metzger, would develop industrial capacity in space, using resources close to home, such as from the Moon. This has the potential to greatly reduce the cost of building and maintaining systems in space. But how to develop that industrial capacity? Remember we can’t afford to launch and house thousands of workers from Earth. The answer it would seem, is with advanced robotics and advanced manufacturing.

But is even this possible? The good news is that advanced robotics and advanced manufacturing are already being rapidly developed here on Earth. The driver for this development is economics, not space. These new tools will still have to be modified to work in the harsh environment of space, and with resources that are different from what are commonly used here on Earth. While learning to adapt those technologies to the Moon and elsewhere in the solar system is not trivial, it is certainly better that having to develop them from scratch!

Continue reading “The Robotic Double-Edged Sword” »


Mar 26, 2015

Smart Cities Built on Emerging Tech is India’s Latest Initiative

Posted by in category: futurism

By — SingularityHubhttp://cdn.singularityhub.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/6186422906_3a34d4752b_o-1000x400.jpg

The world is urbanizing—and fast. Why are cities so popular?

They’re where the opportunities are. In 2014, the world’s 300 largest cities accounted for 20 percent of the world’s population and nearly half of global output. It is estimated that growing cities could bring nearly $30 trillion a year into the global economy by 2025.

As we rapidly urbanize—and 70 percent of urban growth takes place in emerging economies—understanding cities becomes critical. How can we, for example, improve livability and resource management? Manage disease and sanitation?

Read more

Mar 24, 2015

How to design the future

Posted by in category: futurism

Jon Turney — Aeonhttp://cdn-imgs-mag.aeon.co/images/2015/03/Digitarians-Dunne-and-Raby-1024x641.jpgPicture yourself in a supermarket aisle in 2050. These new ‘magic meatballs’, brightly coloured for the kids, seem worth a try. Better have some of the meat powder too, one of the more established products from the mass-manufacturers of cultured meat – you can make that creamy meat-based fondue that always satisfies. You don’t fancy the meat ice-cream today, but there’s still time left for a trip to the deli counter, for some expensive, but delicious ‘rustic’ meat, matured in special vats, or perhaps some knitted steaks. And you can pile your cart secure in the knowledge that no animals were harmed in the making of any of these offerings.

At the moment, in vitro meat is a laboratory venture, yielding expensive and unappetising-looking muscle fibres that might be fit for filler in pies or burgers. But suppose the researchers’ ambitions are realised? Where will the technology go? How will it be marketed and consumed? Who might want it, and what for? These questions animate The In Vitro Meat Cook Book (2014) by Koert van Mensvoort and Hendrik-Jan Grievink, whose recipes for hypothetical products are sampled above. The authors’ open-ended, imaginative approach makes the book a good example of a new way of questioning technology: design fiction. As questions about technological choices trouble us more and more, it could be that design fiction, not science, has the better answers.

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Mar 20, 2015

Can Ethereum help eliminate corruption and bureaucracy in the developing world? Could Ethereum One Day Transform Law, Finance, and Civil Society?

Posted by in categories: big data, business, complex systems, computing, disruptive technology, economics, futurism, governance, human trajectories, information science

Quoted: “Ethereum’s developers believe their project will lead to the proliferation of programs they call “smart contracts,” in which the terms of an agreement are written in code and enforced by software. These smart contracts could carry out the instructions of a complex algorithm based on data feed—such as a stock ticker. They could facilitate practically any financial transaction, such as holding money in escrow or dispersing micropayments among autonomous machines. They could be used to create a peer-to-peer gambling network, a peer-to-peer stock trading platform, a peer-to-peer social network, a prenuptial agreement, a will, a standard agreement to split a dinner check, or a public registry for keeping track of who owns what land in a city.

Gupta predicts that these smart contracts will be so cheap and versatile that they’ll do “a lot of things that today we do informally,” and take on a lot of the “donkey work of running a society.””

Read the article here > http://reason.com/blog/2015/03/19/here-comes-ethereum-an-information-techn

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