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Archive for the ‘human trajectories’ category

May 16, 2015

Then and Now: 8 Fun Examples of Exponential Change From the Last Decade — By Peter Diamandis SingularityHub

Posted by in categories: futurism, human trajectories

http://cdn.singularityhub.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/10-years-exponential-change-1000x400.jpg

It’s hard to believe, but…

Ten years ago…

  • The first video was uploaded to YouTube.
  • Facebook, then just a year old, dropped “the” from its old URL “thefacebook.com” after acquiring “facebook.com” for $200K.
  • An early prototype of an autonomous car completed the DARPA Grand Challenge for the first time.
  • The term “drone” meant a military weapon system.
  • Bitcoin and blockchain didn’t exist, and wouldn’t be created for three more years.
  • Android was a small startup that Google had just acquired.
  • There were 6.4 billion humans on Earth, only ~1 billion were online, and none of them had heard of Uber or AirBnb. Read more

Apr 24, 2015

To be a Space Faring Civilization

Posted by in categories: astronomy, cosmology, human trajectories, innovation, science, space, space travel, transportation

Until 2006 our Solar System consisted essentially of a star, planets, moons, and very much smaller bodies known as asteroids and comets. In 2006 the International Astronomical Union’s (IAU) Division III Working Committee addressed scientific issues and the Planet Definition Committee address cultural and social issues with regard to planet classifications. They introduced the “pluton” for bodies similar to planets but much smaller.

The IAU set down three rules to differentiate between planets and dwarf planets. First, the object must be in orbit around a star, while not being itself a star. Second, the object must be large enough (or more technically correct, massive enough) for its own gravity to pull it into a nearly spherical shape. The shape of objects with mass above 5×1020 kg and diameter greater than 800 km would normally be determined by self-gravity, but all borderline cases would have to be established by observation.

Third, plutons or dwarf planets, are distinguished from classical planets in that they reside in orbits around the Sun that take longer than 200 years to complete (i.e. they orbit beyond Neptune). Plutons typically have orbits with a large orbital inclination and a large eccentricity (noncircular orbits). A planet should dominate its zone, either gravitationally, or in its size distribution. That is, the definition of “planet” should also include the requirement that it has cleared its orbital zone. Of course this third requirement automatically implies the second. Thus, one notes that planets and plutons are differentiated by the third requirement.

As we are soon to become a space faring civilization, we should rethink these cultural and social issues, differently, by subtraction or addition. By subtraction, if one breaks the other requirements? Comets and asteroids break the second requirement that the object must be large enough. Breaking the first requirement, which the IAU chose not address at the time, would have planet sized bodies not orbiting a star. From a socio-cultural perspective, one could suggest that these be named “darktons” (from dark + plutons). “Dark” because without orbiting a star, these objects would not be easily visible; “tons” because in deep space, without much matter, these bodies could not meet the third requirement of being able to dominate its zone.

Continue reading “To be a Space Faring Civilization” »


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 5, 2015

This Is Big: A Robo-Car Just Drove Across the Country

Posted by in categories: disruptive technology, driverless cars, human trajectories, robotics/AI, transportation

— WiredAutonomous car from Delphi drives on Treasure Island in preparation for a cross-country trip from San Francisco to New York City in San FranciscoAn autonomous car just drove across the country.

Nine days after leaving San Francisco, a blue car packed with tech from a company you’ve probably never heard of rolled into New York City after crossing 15 states and 3,400 miles to make history. The car did 99 percent of the driving on its own, yielding to the carbon-based life form behind the wheel only when it was time to leave the highway and hit city streets.

This amazing feat, by the automotive supplier Delphi, underscores the great leaps this technology has taken in recent years, and just how close it is to becoming a part of our lives. Yes, many regulatory and legislative questions must be answered, and it remains to be seen whether consumers are ready to cede control of their cars, but the hardware is, without doubt, up to the task. Read More

Apr 2, 2015

Putting America Gainfully Back to Work

Posted by in categories: human trajectories, robotics/AI

By — SingularityHubhttp://cdn.singularityhub.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/Screen-Shot-2015-03-20-at-9.20.23-AM-1000x400.png

Years ago, my brother, Matt, explained to me that there are three ways to push out the productivity curve: technology, capital, or people.

When we increase productivity, we increase wealth. However, when we discuss how these three forces impact the labor market, we often focus singularly on how technology either creates or destroys jobs and wealth.

Our fear – not entirely misplaced – is that robots will render most of us useless, and in doing so, cleave society into those who control the machines (educated titans of industry), and those who fall victim to them (uneducated poor workers). In this future, the majority of humans – helpless and tired – fall by the way-side on the road to progress.

Read more

Mar 29, 2015

Intelligent robots must uphold human rights

Posted by in categories: human trajectories, law, robotics/AI, security

Hutan Ashrafian — nature.comhttp://images.sequart.org/images/i-robot-510ea6801c50a.jpg

There is a strong possibility that in the not-too-distant future, artificial intelligences (AIs), perhaps in the form of robots, will become capable of sentient thought. Whatever form it takes, this dawning of machine consciousness is likely to have a substantial impact on human society.

Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and physicist Stephen Hawking have in recent months warned of the dangers of intelligent robots becoming too powerful for humans to control. The ethical conundrum of intelligent machines and how they relate to humans has long been a theme of science fiction, and has been vividly portrayed in films such as 1982’s Blade Runner and this year’s Ex Machina.Read more

Mar 29, 2015

It’s Time For Robot Pilots

Posted by in categories: automation, human trajectories, robotics/AI, security, transportation

Jason Koebler — MotherBoard

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It’s increasingly looking like the plane that crashed Monday in France, killing 150 people, went down because one of the pilots ​turned off the autopilot and intentionally crashed it into the ground. Why are we still letting humans fly passenger planes?

The short answer is, we’re not really. It’s no secret that planes are already highly automated, and, with technology that’s available today (but that isn’t installed on the Airbus A320 operated by Germanwings that crashed), it would have been possible for someone in a ground station somewhere to have wrested control of the plane from those on board and reestablished autopilot (or to have piloted the plane from the ground)Read more

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

Mar 6, 2015

Singularity? Reality? Humanity? Are there sophisticated Barbarians in Silicon Valley? Linking the Human Brain to the Computer — Exciting, or Frightening?

Posted by in categories: augmented reality, biotech/medical, complex systems, cyborg, evolution, futurism, human trajectories, posthumanism, singularity, transhumanism

Quoted: “Once you really solve a problem like direct brain-computer interface … when brains and computers can interact directly, to take just one example, that’s it, that’s the end of history, that’s the end of biology as we know it. Nobody has a clue what will happen once you solve this. If life can basically break out of the organic realm into the vastness of the inorganic realm, you cannot even begin to imagine what the consequences will be, because your imagination at present is organic. So if there is a point of Singularity, as it’s often referred to, by definition, we have no way of even starting to imagine what’s happening beyond that.”

Read the article here > http://www.theamericanconservative.com/dreher/silicon-valley-mordor/

Feb 8, 2015

The Acceleration of Acceleration: How The Future Is Arriving Far Faster Than Expected

Posted by in categories: futurism, human trajectories, singularity

Steven Kotler — Forbes
singularity-university-summit-europe-1000x400

*This article co-written with author Ken Goffman.

One of the things that happens when you write books about the future is you get to watch your predictions fail. This is nothing new, of course, but what’s different this time around is the direction of those failures.

Used to be, folks were way too bullish about technology and way too optimistic with their predictions. Flying cars and Mars missions being two classic—they should be here by now—examples. The Jetsons being another.

Continue reading “The Acceleration of Acceleration: How The Future Is Arriving Far Faster Than Expected” »


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