Future

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  • Digital Dark Age On The Media

    Blog of the Long Now
    Alexander Rose - Twitter: @zander
    29 Jun 2015 | 2:01 pm
      On this week’s episode of On the Media, they dive into the digital preservation issue: what would happen if we, as a species, lost access to our electronic records? What if, either by the slow creep of  technological obsolescence or sudden cosmic disaster, we no longer could draw from the well of of knowledge accrued through the ages? What if we fell into…a digital dark age?    
  • Walking in nature lowers risk of depression, scientists find in MRI study

    KurzweilAI » News
    1 Jul 2015 | 8:11 pm
    A new study has found quantifiable evidence that supports the common-sense idea that walking in nature could lower your risk of depression. The study, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, found that people who walked for 90 minutes in a natural area, as opposed to participants who walked in a high-traffic urban setting (El Camino Real in Palo Alto, California, a noisy street with three to four lanes in both directions), showed decreased activity in the subgenual prefrontal cortex, a brainregion active during rumination — repetitive thought focused on negative…
  • In the Press

    Open the Future
    Jamais Cascio
    30 Jun 2015 | 2:03 pm
    Yep, pretty busy lately. I hope to have a book announcement soon, though. I was asked to write a short opinion piece for New Scientist on the problem of filtering our reality, based on the success of the "Here Active Listening" system on Kickstarter. The piece is online, but sadly for now behind a paywall. This excerpt should give you a taste: Critics have also noted an implicit class element in paying for the ability to block out other people's lives. This ambivalence will only grow as the technology improves. Political protests, styles of music, and even specific voices or words could be…
  • A 21st Century Submarines arms race could see numbers exceeding the 1000 German U-boats of WW2

    Next Big Future
    1 Jul 2015 | 1:54 am
    There were about 1000 German U-boats built over the course of World War 2.The main German sub was the Type 7C which was about 800 tons and 67 meters (220 feet) long.Currently the USA has about 55 nuclear submarines that cost about $1-3 billion each. On average the cost of each submarine is about $1.6 to 2 billion. The annual operating cost for any of these subs is approximately $21 million. The typical service life of a nuclear sub is about 30 years. Refueling and modernizing at the half-life point costs about $200 million. Near the end of the service life, another refueling and extensive…
  • Toward advanced nanotechnology: Working solid state molecular shuttle

    the Foresight Institute
    Jim Lewis
    1 Jul 2015 | 4:53 pm
    Credit: Loeb Research Group, University of Windsor Two years ago we cited the demonstration by a group at the University of Windsor of a solid state molecular machine comprising a molecular wheel made from a rotaxane molecule held in place in a self-assembled metal organic framework. This work was widely recognized as a step toward solid state molecular machinery. A recent article at Phys.org written by Heather Zeiger explains the most recent step forward along that path, the creation of a molecular shuttle in which the ring around the axle of the rotaxane molecule shuttles back and forth…
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    Blog of the Long Now

  • Digital Dark Age On The Media

    Alexander Rose - Twitter: @zander
    29 Jun 2015 | 2:01 pm
      On this week’s episode of On the Media, they dive into the digital preservation issue: what would happen if we, as a species, lost access to our electronic records? What if, either by the slow creep of  technological obsolescence or sudden cosmic disaster, we no longer could draw from the well of of knowledge accrued through the ages? What if we fell into…a digital dark age?    
  • Neil Gaiman Seminar Media

    Andrew Warner
    15 Jun 2015 | 10:31 am
    This lecture was presented as part of The Long Now Foundation’s monthly Seminars About Long-term Thinking. How Stories Last Tuesday June 9, 02015 – San Francisco Audio is up on the Gaiman Seminar page, or you can subscribe to our podcast. How stories last – a summary by Stewart Brand Stories are alive. The ones that last, Gaiman said, outcompete other stories by changing over time. They make it from medium to medium—from oral to written to film and beyond. They lose uninteresting elements but hold on to the most compelling bits or even add some. The most popular version of…
  • Beth Shapiro Seminar Media

    Danielle Engelman
    1 Jun 2015 | 10:38 am
    This lecture was presented as part of The Long Now Foundation’s monthly Seminars About Long-term Thinking. How to Clone a Mammoth Monday May 11, 02015 – San Francisco Video is up on the Shapiro Seminar page. Audio is up on the Shapiro Seminar page, or you can subscribe to our podcast. De-extinction science – a summary by Stewart Brand When people hear about “ancient DNA” in fossils, Shapiro began, the first question always is “Can we clone a dinosaur?” Dinosaurs died out so many millions of years ago, their fossils are nothing but rock (and by the way, there’s no…
  • The Artangel Longplayer Letters: John Burnside writes to Manuel Arriaga

    Andrew Warner
    26 May 2015 | 3:48 pm
    In April, Carne Ross wrote a letter to John Burnside as part of the Artangel Longplayer Letters series. The series is a relay-style correspondence: The first letter was written by Brian Eno to Nassim Taleb. Nassim Taleb then wrote to Stewart Brand, and Stewart wrote to Esther Dyson, who wrote to Carne Ross, who wrote to John Burnside. John’s response is now addressed to Manuel Arriaga, a writer & professor who studies Political Science, who will respond with a letter to a recipient of his choosing. The discussion thus far has focused on the extent and ways government and technology…
  • Neil Gaiman Seminar Tickets

    Andrew Warner
    20 May 2015 | 11:38 am
      The Long Now Foundation’s monthly Seminars About Long-term Thinking Neil Gaiman presents “How Stories Last” TICKETS Tuesday June 9, 02015 at 7:30pm Castro Theater Long Now Members can reserve 1 seat, and purchase a second ticket for half price ($15) join today! General Tickets $30   About this Seminar: Neil’s talk will explore the way stories, myths and tales survive over great lengths of time and why creating for the future means making works that will endure within the oral tradition. Preternaturally eloquent, Neil Gaiman has told stories in every…
 
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    KurzweilAI » News

  • Walking in nature lowers risk of depression, scientists find in MRI study

    1 Jul 2015 | 8:11 pm
    A new study has found quantifiable evidence that supports the common-sense idea that walking in nature could lower your risk of depression. The study, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, found that people who walked for 90 minutes in a natural area, as opposed to participants who walked in a high-traffic urban setting (El Camino Real in Palo Alto, California, a noisy street with three to four lanes in both directions), showed decreased activity in the subgenual prefrontal cortex, a brainregion active during rumination — repetitive thought focused on negative…
  • Future of Life Institute awards $7M to explore artificial intelligence risks

    1 Jul 2015 | 4:35 pm
    Elon Musk (credit: Wikimedia Commons) The Future of Life Institute (FLI) announced today (July 1) the selection of 37 research teams around the world to which it plans to award about $7 million from Elon Musk and the Open Philanthropy Project for a global research program aimed at keeping AI beneficial to humanity. The grants were funded by part of Musk’s $10 million donation to the group in January and $1.2 million from the Open Philanthropy Project. The winning teams, chosen from nearly 300 applicants worldwide, will research a host of questions in computer science, law, policy,…
  • Pulsed electric field technology may rejuvenate skin function and appearance

    30 Jun 2015 | 6:56 pm
    Experimental setup for PEF testing (credit: Alexander Golberg et al./Scientific Reports) A team of Tel Aviv University and Harvard Medical School researchers has devised a novel non-invasive tissue-stimulation technique using pulsed electric fields (PEF) to generate new skin tissue growth. The technique produces scarless skin rejuvenation and may revolutionize the treatment of degenerative skin diseases, according to research team leader Alexander Golberg of TAU’s Porter School of Environmental Studies and the Center for Engineering in Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital,…
  • How to form 3-D shapes from flat sheets of graphene

    30 Jun 2015 | 5:21 pm
    Graphene integration in a variety of different microstructured geometries, including pyramids, pillars, domes, and inverted pyramids (credit: Nam Research Group, University of Illinois) Researchers from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have developed a new approach for forming 3D shapes from flat, 2D sheets of graphene, paving the way for future integrated systems of graphene-MEMS hybrid devices and flexible electronics. Reported methods of using graphene transfer have been mostly limited to planar or curvilinear surfaces due to the challenges associated with fractures from…
  • Rice University installs powerful electron microscope with sub-nanoscale resolution

    30 Jun 2015 | 4:45 pm
    The Titan Themis microscope at Rice University incorporates a variety of detectors, including X-ray, optical, and multiple electron detectors and a 4K-resolution camera. The microscope gives researchers the ability to create three-dimensional structural reconstructions and carry out electric field mapping of subnanoscale materials. (credit: Jeff Fitlow/Rice University) Rice University has installed the Titan Themis scanning/transmission electron microscope, which will enable scientists from Rice as well as academic and industrial partners to view and analyze materials at angstrom-scale…
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    Open the Future

  • In the Press

    Jamais Cascio
    30 Jun 2015 | 2:03 pm
    Yep, pretty busy lately. I hope to have a book announcement soon, though. I was asked to write a short opinion piece for New Scientist on the problem of filtering our reality, based on the success of the "Here Active Listening" system on Kickstarter. The piece is online, but sadly for now behind a paywall. This excerpt should give you a taste: Critics have also noted an implicit class element in paying for the ability to block out other people's lives. This ambivalence will only grow as the technology improves. Political protests, styles of music, and even specific voices or words could be…
  • Usefully Wrong

    Jamais Cascio
    4 Mar 2015 | 2:31 pm
    It's a line I've used quite a bit in my talks: "The point of futurism [foresight, scenarios] isn't to make accurate predictions. We know that in details large and small, our forecasts will usually be wrong. The goal is to be usefully wrong." I'm not just pre-apologizing for my own errors (although I do hope that it leaves people less annoyed by them). I'm trying to get at a larger point -- forecasts and futurism can still be powerful tools even without being 100% on-target. Forecasts, especially of the multiple-future scenario style, force you (the reader or recipient of said futurism) to…
  • Not Very Uplifting

    Jamais Cascio
    1 Dec 2014 | 12:58 pm
    What responsibility do we have for the things we make? At its root, this is a fairly straightforward science story. Neuroscience researchers at the University of Rochester and the University of Copenhagen successfully transplanted human glial progenitor cells (hGPCs) into a newborn mouse (here's the technical article in The Journal of Neuroscience, and the lay-friendly version in New Scientist). While glial cells are generally considered a support cell in the brain, positioning, feeding, insulating, and protecting neurons, they also help neurons make synaptic connections. The hGPCs…
  • The Inevitable Future

    Jamais Cascio
    10 Nov 2014 | 2:11 pm
    Film student Taylor Baldschun invited me to participate in a project of his, a short documentary on the end of humanity. His final (for the moment) version can be seen here: The Inevitable Future from Taylor Baldschun on Vimeo. On my first viewing, I started counting off the various mannerisms and habits that I find annoying in my own speaking style. But I was caught off-guard by my own final statement, which Taylor uses to close the movie. If humanity were to go extinct, obviously, our life goes away. Over time, our artifacts go away. So what really would be lost in that existential sense is…
  • Magna Cortica talk at TEDx Marin

    Jamais Cascio
    4 Nov 2014 | 6:23 am
    (brushes away cobwebs, wipes dust off of screen, sits quietly for a moment and wonders what happened...) The video of my TEDx talk on the ethics of cognitive augmentation is now up, and you can view it at the TEDx Marin website. (It's also on YouTube directly, but for the time being I'm doing as asked and pointing people to the TEDx Marin website.) A few notes: Most importantly: This talk is based on the work I did for the Institute for the Future's 2014 Ten-Year Forecast. Of all of the things I would like to change about this talk, calling this out explicitly is at the top of the list. I…
 
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    Next Big Future

  • A 21st Century Submarines arms race could see numbers exceeding the 1000 German U-boats of WW2

    1 Jul 2015 | 1:54 am
    There were about 1000 German U-boats built over the course of World War 2.The main German sub was the Type 7C which was about 800 tons and 67 meters (220 feet) long.Currently the USA has about 55 nuclear submarines that cost about $1-3 billion each. On average the cost of each submarine is about $1.6 to 2 billion. The annual operating cost for any of these subs is approximately $21 million. The typical service life of a nuclear sub is about 30 years. Refueling and modernizing at the half-life point costs about $200 million. Near the end of the service life, another refueling and extensive…
  • Electric "Pulse" Technology May Replenish Skin's Collagen

    30 Jun 2015 | 1:09 pm
    A team of Tel Aviv University (TAU) and Harvard Medical School researchers has now devised a non-invasive technique that harnesses pulsed electric fields to generate new skin tissue growth. According to their research, the novel non-invasive tissue stimulation technique, utilizing microsecond-pulsed, high-voltage, non-thermal electric fields, produces scarless skin rejuvenation and may revolutionize the treatment of degenerative skin diseases.An (effective) shock to the system"Pulsed electrical field technology has many advantages, which have already proved effective — for example, in…
  • Carnival of Nuclear Energy 267

    30 Jun 2015 | 11:13 am
    The Carnival of Nuclear Energy 267 is up at the Energy Reality Project.Neutron Bytes - Demand for small modular reactors may be significantly reduced by Supreme Court ruling on EPA coal plant emissions. On June 29th the US Supreme Court threw out EPA’s coal emissions regulations that if implemented would have forced many utilities to close older coal-fired plants.The new emissions controls are aimed at mercury and other toxic pollutants which are not removed from stack emissions by current air pollution controls.The court ruling will require EPA to reconsider the regulations in light of the…
  • Russia has fourth test of Mach10 Yu71 missile and is targeting deployment of 24 hypersonic missiles by 2020 to 2025

    30 Jun 2015 | 1:05 am
    Russia's hypersonic mach 10 Yu-71 missile can break through any missile defense system, military experts said. Russia has reportedly carried out four tests already.The Russians have been developing the new Yu-71 vehicle for several years and conducted the most recent flight test in February, according to an article published this month in Jane’s Intelligence Review.The development of the Yu-71 vehicle took several years, and Russia reportedly conducted the most recent test flight on February 26, with an SS-19 missile trying to deliver the Yu-71 to space. The new hypersonic aircraft is…
  • Indian Government policy think tank believes India can hit and sustain 8% GDP growth and reach US$3 trillion by 2020

    30 Jun 2015 | 12:53 am
    India's growth rate is expected to accelerate to 8 per cent in the current financial year and the economy will surpass USD 3 trillion mark in less than five years, NITI Aayog Vice Chairman Arvind Panagariya said on Monday. National Institution for Transforming India Aayog (NITI AAtog) is a policy think-tank of Government of India that replaces the Planning Commission and aims to involve the states in economic policy-making in India"I will be greatly disappointed if we do not hit the 8 per cent mark in 2015-16. I expect the economy to hit USD 3 trillion within five years or…
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    the Foresight Institute

  • Toward advanced nanotechnology: Working solid state molecular shuttle

    Jim Lewis
    1 Jul 2015 | 4:53 pm
    Credit: Loeb Research Group, University of Windsor Two years ago we cited the demonstration by a group at the University of Windsor of a solid state molecular machine comprising a molecular wheel made from a rotaxane molecule held in place in a self-assembled metal organic framework. This work was widely recognized as a step toward solid state molecular machinery. A recent article at Phys.org written by Heather Zeiger explains the most recent step forward along that path, the creation of a molecular shuttle in which the ring around the axle of the rotaxane molecule shuttles back and forth…
  • Wafer-scale atomically precise thin layers for nanotechnology

    Jim Lewis
    30 Jun 2015 | 1:01 pm
    A molybdenum disulphide device array on a transparent silica wafer. Credit: Kibum Kang, Cornell University The path of progress in nanotechnology stretches from approximate control of the structure of matter—a precision of 1 to 100 nm in at least one dimension in which unique phenomena enable novel applications—to atomic precision in three dimensions. We at Foresight have been primarily interested in mechanical properties of systems of atomically precise machines. Progress along this path leads toward productive nanosystems and inexpensive high throughput atomically precise…
  • DNA nanomachines more stable than expected in human serum and blood

    Jim Lewis
    29 Jun 2015 | 4:24 pm
    Credit: Boise State University and Sara Goltry et al. Over the past several years we have cited substantial progress in making ever more complex molecular machinery using structural DNA nanotechnology. Much of this work is focused on eventual medical applications, so it becomes important to ask how fragile such machinery would be in human serum and blood. A year ago we cited work work showing that a Lipid coat protects DNA nanorobot from immune attack, and six months ago that Swarms of DNA nanorobots execute complex tasks in living animal. More recently researchers at Boise State University…
  • Self-assembly of silicon metamaterial for nanoscale reflectors

    Stephanie C
    25 Jun 2015 | 9:08 am
    A scanning electron micrograph shows a tilted view of a metamaterial mirror made of silicon cylinders patterned on a silicon wafer. Credit: ACS Photonic Recently highlighted in a C&EN article titled Simple Process Creates Near-Perfect Mirrors Out of a Metamaterial, researchers out of Vanderbilt University developed a method to self-assemble silicon nanostructures to achieve highly (Bragg-like) reflective mirrors which capitalize on nanoscale properties not present in bulk structures. The self-assembly method is far simpler than previous, conventional electron beam lithography approaches.
  • Google Tech Talk video by Feynman Prize Winner

    Jim Lewis
    24 Jun 2015 | 11:59 am
    Christian Schafmeister Google Tech Talk June 10, 2015. Christian Schafmeister, winner of the 2005 Foresight Institute Feynman Prize for Experimental work and participant in last year’s Foresight Institute Workshop on Directed/Programmable Matter for Energy, began programming at age 12 on a Radio Shack TRS-80, followed that interest into a career in chemistry, and is currently a chemistry professor at Temple University. Earlier this month he gave a Google Tech Talk that is available on You Tube “Clasp: Common Lisp using LLVM and C++ for Molecular Metaprogramming – Towards a…
 
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    Soft Machines

  • On Singularities, mathematical and metaphorical

    Richard Jones
    20 Jun 2015 | 10:23 am
    Transhumanists look forward to a technological singularity, which we should expect to take place on or around 2045, if Ray Kurzweil is to be relied on. The technological singularity is described as something akin to an event horizon, a date at which technological growth becomes so rapid that to look beyond it becomes quite unknowable to us mere cis-humans. In some versions this is correlated with the time when, due to the inexorable advance of Moore’s Law, machine intelligence surpasses human intelligence and goes into a recursive cycle of self-improvement. The original idea of the…
  • Does transhumanism matter?

    Richard Jones
    7 Apr 2015 | 9:13 am
    The political scientist Francis Fukuyama once identified transhumanism as the “the world’s most dangerous idea”. Perhaps a handful of bioconservatives share this view, but I suspect few others do. After all, transhumanism is hardly part of the mainstream. It has a few high profile spokesmen, and it has its vociferous adherents on the internet, but that’s not unusual. The wealth, prominence, and technical credibility of some of its sympathisers – drawn from the elite of Silicon Valley – does, though, differentiate transhumanism from the general run of fringe movements. My…
  • Does radical innovation best get done by big firms or little ones?

    Richard Jones
    5 Mar 2015 | 12:56 am
    A recent blogpost by the economist Diane Coyle quoted JK Galbraith as saying in 1952: “The modern industry of a few large firms is an excellent instrument for inducing technical change. It is admirably equipped for financing technical development and for putting it into use. The competition of the competitive world, by contrast, almost completely precludes technical development.” Coyle describes this as “complete nonsense” -“ big firms tend to do incremental innovation, while radical innovation tends to come from small entrants.” This is certainly conventional wisdom…
  • Growth, technological innovation, and the British productivity crisis

    Richard Jones
    28 Jan 2015 | 2:38 pm
    The biggest current issue in the UK’s economic situation is the continuing slump in productivity. It’s this poor productivity performance that underlies slow or no real wage growth, and that also contributes to disappointing government revenues and consequent slow progress reducing the government deficit. Yet the causes of this poor productivity performance are barely discussed, let alone understood. In the long-term, productivity growth is associated with innovation and technological progress – have we stopped being able to innovate? The ONS has recently released a set of…
  • Science, Politics, and the Haldane Principle

    Richard Jones
    5 Jan 2015 | 1:09 pm
    The UK government published a new Science and Innovation Strategy just before Christmas, in circumstances that have led to a certain amount of comment (see, for example, here and here). There’s a lot to be said about this strategy, but here I want to discuss just one aspect – the document’s extended references to the Haldane Principle. This principle is widely believed to define, in UK science policy, a certain separation between politics and science, taking detailed decisions about what science to fund out of the hands of politicians and entrusting them to experts in the Research…
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    Sentient Developments

  • Woman Gives Birth Using Ovarian Tissue Frozen In Childhood

    George
    1 Jul 2015 | 2:18 pm
    In a medical first, a woman has given birth to a healthy baby boy from a transplant of her own frozen ovarian tissue preserved when she was just 13-years-old. It's a remarkable breakthrough that's poised to benefit young people who lose their fertility because of cancer treatments.As reported in The Telegraph, the unnamed 28-year-old woman, who suffers from sickle-cell anemia, had to have her ovary tissue surgically removed prior to chemotherapy. She was only 13-years-old at the time and had never experienced menstruation, but the doctors had the sense to cryopreserve her ovarian tissue…
  • Are Limited Lifespans An Evolutionary Adaptation?

    George
    1 Jul 2015 | 2:16 pm
    Since the time of Darwin, evolutionary biologists have wondered why the lifespans of different species vary so significantly. A new model now suggests that the life expectancy of any given species is a function of evolutionary pressures — a conclusion that hints at the potential for powerful anti-aging interventions in humans.The new paper, which now appears in Physical Review Letters, challenges popular conceptions about the nature of aging and why it manifests at different rates in different organisms, including species that are closely related.By running variations of their model…
  • It's About To Get A Lot Harder To Experiment On Chimps

    George
    1 Jul 2015 | 2:15 pm
    The Jane Goodall Institute, in collaboration with other animal welfare groups, has successfully petitioned the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to declare a new rule under which all chimpanzees—both wild and captive—must be protected as an endangered species.Wild chimpanzees have been listed under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) since 1990, so it seemed odd and inappropriate to a coalition of animal welfare organizations, including the Jane Goodall Institute, that research chimps were not granted the same consideration. According to ESA rules, captive chimps cannot be assigned separate…
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    Broader Perspective

  • Rethinking Risk with Automated Blockchain Macroeconomic Indicators

    16 Jun 2015 | 8:56 pm
    Progress is underway to investigate and migrate many different parts of the banking, securities, and insurance industries to public and private blockchains. These operations include settlement and clearing, smart property digital asset registration and transfer of stocks, bonds, derivatives, private equity, and other instruments, and the structuring of more predictable insurance payouts. One next step is articulating how blockchains might be used more broadly across industries and economies for automated risk management and macroeconomic indicator generation. This could help meet the need for…
  • CryptoSustainability: Reinventing Economics

    7 Jun 2015 | 6:24 am
    The new ‘Sensibility of the Cryptocitizen’ is about a rethinking our relationship with authority, and political and economic life design. It includes personal digital security practices like backing up our money, and more profoundly is not just about rethinking relationships of authority and power, and economic resources and exchange, but reinventing the models by which we use them. Perhaps never before has there been such a creativity that we are bringing to designing and trying different models and modes of life; prototyping as a life practice.True autonomy is setting our own rules,…
  • Blockchain Government

    14 Apr 2015 | 8:48 am
    Blockchain technology is starting to arrive to the extent that applications are being defined for different sectors, most prominently markets/finance/banking, government/legal, IOT, and health. In all of these venues, the thinking is that centralized models may be something of the past, and could be supplemented or improved by secure decentralized frameworks that could be more efficient, quicker, and less expensive. For example, in finance and banking interbank transfers currently take three days to clear, but this could be immediate. The reason that secure decentralized ‘smartnetwork’…
  • Philosophy of Big Data

    5 Apr 2015 | 10:57 pm
    Big data is growing as an area of information technology, service, and science, and so too is the need for its intellectual understanding and interpretation from a theoretical, philosophical, and societal perspective. The ways that we conceptualize and act in the world are shifting now due to increasingly integrated big data flows from the continuously-connected multi-device computing layer that is covering the world. This connected computing layer includes wearables, Internet-of-Things (IOT) sensors, smartphones, tablets, laptops, Quantified Self-Tracking devices like the Fitbit, connected…
  • Blockchain Thinking: The Brain as a DAC (Decentralized Autonomous Corporation)

    30 Mar 2015 | 7:51 pm
    Blockchains are a new form of information technology that could have several important future applications. They could be an explosive operational venue for new kinds of autonomous agents like DACs, distributed autonomous corporations. A DAC is a corporation run without any human involvement through a set of business rules based in software code. It is called a ‘corporation’ because it typically engages in corporate operations like fundraising, providing services, and making profits for shareholders. Blockchains are a software protocol upon which digital cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin run.
 
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    Overcoming Bias

  • Mass Moralizing

    Robin Hanson
    28 Jun 2015 | 2:45 pm
    When a McDonald’s ad shows a dad and a young daughter bonding in the drive through lane, all smiles and excitement, it is claiming that eating at McDonald’s with one’s child is a way of giving to the child, perhaps repaying the child for neglect, a way to foster warm family relationships. We do not measure this claim against the real world, we measure it against our desires for this to be true, for it to be possible. (more) That is Phil Hopkins, author of the new book Mass Moralizing. His main argument is we like to buy from producers who offer sermons with which that we want to…
  • Learn By Doing, Not Watching

    Robin Hanson
    27 Jun 2015 | 9:03 am
    Decades ago the famous “gondola kitten” experiment demonstrated that one must actively explore if one is to learn. One littermate in the set-up was free to explore its environment while another hung passively suspended in a contraption that moved in parallel with the exploring kitten. The gondola passenger saw everything the exploring kitten did but could not initiate any action. The mobile kitten discovered the world for itself while the passive kitten was presented a fait accompli-world in the same way that screen images are passively delivered to us. The passive kitten learned nothing.
  • Em Scale Economies

    Robin Hanson
    23 Jun 2015 | 9:00 am
    Angle, a relaunched journal from Imperial College London, “focuses on the intersection of science, policy and politics in an evolving and complex world.” The current issue focuses on economies of scale, and includes a short paper of mine on ems: I focus on two key results related to economies of scale. … First, an em economy grows faster that ours by avoiding the diminishing returns to capital that we suffer because we can’t grow labour fast enough. Second, an economy has larger cities because it avoids the commuting congestion costs that limit our city sizes. (more) Of…
  • Doing Good ≠ Being Good

    Robin Hanson
    12 Jun 2015 | 10:30 am
    Most of us like to be associated with “idealistic” groups that claim that they are doing good, i.e., making the world better. However, this is usually not our strongest motive in choosing to associate with such groups. Instead, we more strongly want to make ourselves look good, and gain good-looking associations. Most idealistic groups quickly learn to cater to this demand by: Making meetings where people can visibly show off their affiliation with the group, form ties with like-minded others, and affiliate with impressive speakers/leaders. Making ladders of extra recognition, such as…
  • Industry Via Fashion?

    Robin Hanson
    9 Jun 2015 | 8:20 am
    What caused the industrial revolution to appear in Europe, clearly in full swing after 1800, yet never before anywhere else in the world? Since causes precede effects, one simple way to try to answer this question is to ask: What is the earliest thing that happened only in Europe that seems plausibly along a causal path to later produce an industrial revolution? For example, there was the scientific revolution in the mid 1600s, the exploration of new continents in the 1500s, and the printing press in the late 1400s. I just came across a plausible earlier candidate: rapidly changing clothing…
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    The Fourth Revolution Blog

  • Why Successful Entrepreneurs Must Be Masters at Risk Management

    Jeremie Averous
    30 Jun 2015 | 4:30 am
    I know a very successful entrepreneur. He was highly praised locally as a success, and indeed the growth and reach increase of his business was impressive. Upon careful observation, he was taking what much more risk than I would have ever considered to grow his business. This created substantial doubt for me – maybe I was too risk-adverse to succeed in my ventures? Are all entrepreneurs so highly risk-taking? Now, a few months later, the economy in that particular business is tough and he is close to losing everything. It’s tough on my side too, but thanks to a prudent…
  • What The Two Levels of Confidence Are

    Jeremie Averous
    27 Jun 2015 | 4:30 am
    Following our previous post on ‘Why Showing Confidence is So Important‘, a key question for me is whether Confidence needs to be associated with a skill level of some sort, or can just be a general Confidence level. I thus think there are two levels of confidence, and the second is much harder to achieve that the first: First level: confidence achieved through a high mastery of a particular skill. The confidence level stems from a demonstrable capability that is quite higher than most can achieve Second level: general confidence level, irrespective of a skill level. It can stem…
  • How to Embrace Failure, but not too Tight!

    Jeremie Averous
    25 Jun 2015 | 4:30 am
    It has become extremely fashionable to claim that failure is a decisive element of success. This has turned quite extreme, with stories ‘from rags to riches’, almost like if utmost failure (personal and professional) was a pre-requisite of success. It is almost as if each successful person had to find a way to show that at some point in his or her life, he or she was at the point of utter emotional breakdown with less than 10 cents on their bank account! Yes, we need to embrace failure. But like Michael Jordan, it should not be life-threatening. Don’t embrace failure too…
  • What is the State of the Fourth Revolution?

    Jeremie Averous
    23 Jun 2015 | 4:30 am
    On a yearly basis, Mary Meeker of Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers gives an important talk about the state of the internet (Internet trends). It is a very commented set of slides (the link to the slidepack and the presentation video below). Ijust want to comment two slides here. Good news: the Fourth Revolution is pervading our society increasingly. The slide gives a measure of the impact depending on the area. Some progress needs to happen on the government and regulatory side for sure. Personally I believe that education is today quite more disrupted than what she shows here. On the…
  • Why You Need to Give Yourself Permission for New Ideas

    Jeremie Averous
    20 Jun 2015 | 4:30 am
    “New ideas won’t appear if you don’t have permission within yourself” – Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff, quoted in the book Focus by Daniel Goleman. He continues “When I was a VP at Oracle, I took off to Hawaii for a month just to relax, and when I did that it opened up my career to new ideas, perspectives, and directions.” You need to give yourself permission and time to release your creativity. This is often related to giving yourself permission to disconnect and be creative. This might then take the shape of a walk, or of a couple of days off, undisturbed by…
 
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    Futurist.com: Futurist Speaker Glen Hiemstra

  • Future thought for the week

    Glen Hiemstra
    28 Jun 2015 | 5:00 am
    Everything possible today was at one time impossible. Everything impossible today may at some time in the future be possible. Dr. Ed Lindaman was the program director for planning Apollo, then became a college president and direct mentor to me in becoming a futurist. He remains the most amazing person that I’ve known, and he was a wizard with words. This is one of my favorite of his sayings. The post Future thought for the week appeared first on Futurist.com: Futurist Speaker Glen Hiemstra.
  • What’s up with Ceres?

    Glen Hiemstra
    27 Jun 2015 | 5:00 am
    Before too long we might learn more about the dwarf planet Ceres, the largest body that lies between Mars and Jupiter in the asteroid belt the closest dwarf planet to Earth. The spaceship Dawn is orbiting at 2700 miles for now, but after June 30 begins to slowly descend, until it will be 700-900 miles in altitude by August. Perhaps we will learn more then, in this the new golden age of space development First there were the bright lights, as yet not explained. And then the recent discovery of a pyramid shape. What do you think? Or, perhaps what do you hope for? The post What’s up with…
  • Best Scifi Reads for Summer

    Glen Hiemstra
    23 Jun 2015 | 9:50 am
    Futurist.com Think Tank authors are among the recently named “26 essential science fiction novels to get you ready for the future.” ZDNet curated the list and it includes novels by Brenda Cooper, long time colleague, and Ramez Naam, both Think Tank members. I know most of these authors, and can endorse any of the 26 recommendations. (There should be 27 on the list, as Brenda’s Edge of Dark takes us into the tech vs. humanity world of the possible future. Here is the list… Vernor Vinge: True Names | Rainbows End John Bruner: The Sheep Look Up | The Jagged Orbit | Stand…
  • Humanity vs Technology

    Glen Hiemstra
    23 Jun 2015 | 8:41 am
    Futurist colleague Gerd Leonhard has produced a short video film, in which he suggests that humanity will see more change in the next 20 years than in the last 300 years. In this nicely produced video Gerd gets to the major themes he is addressing these days – exponentiality, transhumanism, singularity, internet of things, datawars and privacy, artificial intelligence and the possibility of abundance. I recommend you take a look. The post Humanity vs Technology appeared first on Futurist.com: Futurist Speaker Glen Hiemstra.
  • Future Thought for the Week

    Glen Hiemstra
    22 Jun 2015 | 10:49 am
    Since the 1990’s I have been saying that the future is not something that just happens to us. The future is something we do. We often wait for the future. When we do that, we forget that even waiting is a way of actively creating the future. The post Future Thought for the Week appeared first on Futurist.com: Futurist Speaker Glen Hiemstra.
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    Canimpact Blog

  • Secrets to selecting and managing your PR agency

    canimpact
    14 Jun 2015 | 6:28 am
    Managing your PR agency Whenever I lectured or workshopped on PR related topics, one recurring pain-point that accelerated white hair growth was the management or mismanagement of the PR agency. It gets worse when comparing PR to other marketing disciplines;  since  we are doused daily with waterfalls of digital data, that can be tracked, monitored and monetized in real time, the “low-tech” services based on, dare I say, age-old writing, networking and creative skills are raising some serious measurement queries. So…if advertising can go programmatic, with almost every pixel, CPM…
  • Why is 2015 shaping up to be a great year for PR?

    canimpact
    3 Feb 2015 | 8:35 am
    PR in 2015 is recapturing its rightful place as the platform for conversion! So…how do you intend to make the most of low cost fast-track PR? Folks, we are witnessing a change. Until recently, the deluge of digital clutter littering our online space has been clouding the value of PR. But in 2015 it’s becoming abundantly clear – PR is back on the agenda. PR is recapturing its rightful place as a communication platform that encompasses connection, engagement, storytelling, persuasion and ultimately conversion.  No matter how much content is channeled across multiple media…
  • What is the future of digital news in 2014?

    canimpact
    27 Feb 2014 | 1:28 am
    What trends are disrupting digital news and newsrooms in 2014 and beyond? Trends disrupting breaking news online Will editors replace a newsworthy story, with content dictated by ad technology? It’s a mind-bending thought, but it may happen faster than you think. And when it does, the bastions of breaking news will typically determine a good story by its potential eCPM value (revenue generated from every 1000 views per page), and less by its perceived news value. Everything is about to get a whole lot more scientific. Our traffic obsessed culture will be increasingly fueled by digital ad…
  • The truth about Content marketing 2014 – What can go wrong and how to fix it

    canimpact
    17 Nov 2013 | 10:46 am
    Content marketing 2014 guidelines It baffles me… B2B businesses spend on average 30% of the marketing budget on content marketing. A flood of  statistics show that 58% of marketers will increase their budget in 2014, even though only 42% find their efforts successful. So, where are we getting it wrong? What can be done in 2014 to prevent the run-of-the-mill content factories from churning out digital debris? Probably the hardest step is the first one.  As a marketer I have fallen into the trap of creating customer personas, developing a strategic plan, assessing marketing automation…
  • How to nail a winning webinar step-by-step

    canimpact
    25 Aug 2013 | 7:18 am
    Part 1 Honestly, when I started producing webinars, I was not a great fan. Webinars at first seemed like a highly time consuming marketing activity with little results. Well, I was wrong. How to nail a winning webinar I witnessed how high quality customers were more easily converted after attending webinars. Over time I also realized that webinars were a magnet for prospects ripe to become quality customers. Eventually I switched from auto-piloting through a webinar to seizing this broadcasting moment and turning it into a successful lead mining experience. I began to think of webinars as a…
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    Singularitarian

  • The MOD-t 3D printer is now available to order...

    30 Jun 2015 | 2:03 pm
    The MOD-t 3D printer is now available to order on http://newmatter.com 
  •  Introduction to Construction Robotics and the bricklaying robot...

    29 Jun 2015 | 2:25 pm
     Introduction to Construction Robotics and the bricklaying robot SAM 
  • When 3-D Printing Won't Do, This At-Home Laser Cutter Will | WIRED

    25 Jun 2015 | 12:50 pm
    When 3-D Printing Won't Do, This At-Home Laser Cutter Will | WIRED: FOR ALL ITS promise, the 3-D printer is not perfect. Sure, it’s great for creating prototypes or small personal items or parts, but it simply cannot do everything. Those who want to dive into design or embellish their DIY creations, or even use materials like leather, wood, or cloth need something more refined, more accurate and versatile. They need a laser cutter.
  • Will we ever… build ringworlds?

    11 Jun 2015 | 8:48 am
    Will we ever… build ringworlds?: Huge ring-shaped worlds orbiting distant stars have become an iconic image of science fiction. Their pristine landscape, contained within a thin, ring-like structure, has tantalized our imagination. The ringworld has become a common motif, a future base for humanity…
  • The Future of Computers Is the Mind of a Toddler

    9 Jun 2015 | 3:13 pm
    The Future of Computers Is the Mind of a Toddler: Machines contain the breadth of human knowledge, yet they have the common sense of a newborn. The problem is that computers don’t act enough like toddlers. Yann LeCun, director of artificial intelligence research at Facebook, demonstrates this by standing a pen on the table and then holding his phone in front of it. He performs a sleight of hand, and when he picks the phone up—ta-da! The pen is gone. It’s a trick that’ll elicit a gasp from any one-year-old child, but today’s cutting-edge artificial intelligence software—and…
 
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    Getting Through High School

  • New Kid On The Block

    15 Jun 2015 | 11:56 am
    For some reason, I woke up VERRY tired before my shift. It's odd, really. Usually you feel refreshed after waking up but, nope, it wasn't to be for me. Now, living in Florida means you are often subjected to hot and humid air. This morning was no exception. The short thirty second walk from my car to the hospital doors took an eternity. It was only eight in the morning and I was certain that when my shift ended, I would be trapped indoors from fear of stepping outside. (The heat got me anyway, but you'll hear that soon.)Today, I did something different: after signing in, I didn't go straight…
  • The Terrible Case of "What-to-do-itis"

    12 Jun 2015 | 9:05 am
    Here I am, two weeks into summer and at a loss for what I should do for the day. All of Phineas' and Ferb's ideas are too zany and impractical for me. Sure, I could probably work on that 4,000 word research paper due the first day of school, or finish that blog post I promised about Conclusions (which has almost concluded), or work on my college app essays or even work on scholarships. It's a lot to do, yet when I ask myself "what should I do today?" my mind comes up blank. Not even getting up off of the couch to go sit outside by the pool seems enticing. I just want to sit and do…
  • New Shift, New Faces

    8 Jun 2015 | 8:07 am
    So, recently, I changed my hospital shift to Sunday morning. Why? I actually have no idea. I had a reason for it a while ago but I kind of forgot! With the new shift comes one thing: different staff. Most of the doctors or nurses I’ve become familiar with don’t work on Sundays so I had to get adjusted to new faces today. I’ll introduce them as this post goes on.What happened in Some Explaining To Dohappened again today. The second I stepped out of the stairwell, there were two fresh blood samples waiting for me to deliver to lab downstairs. You’re probably saying to yourself “why…
  • The Killer College App Essay

    5 Jun 2015 | 4:15 pm
    Hey there! This post is more of like a heads-up type of post! I realized that I'm in the middle of all my college application stuff and that a majority of you guys are as well! So, I decided to spread the joy a little bit and share some things I picked up along the way!Now I can't claim to be an expert in writing college application essays, I'm more of an amateur myself, but I've read enough books on the topic to be able to at least tell you some tips and tricks! Now, there is a page devoted to writing the essay if you follow look at the top of the screen (mobile users will have to use the…
  • And So Begins Summer

    4 Jun 2015 | 9:44 am
    Now, my summer vacation began about a week ago, but I haven't actually decompressed until today, if you can believe that. I'm officially a senior now, and instead of that fact making me feel relaxed that my four years are almost up, I feel even more pressure to prepare myself for college. I've already written several college application essays, worked on my college resume, and searched for many scholarships in the past week. And I thought I was on vacation! Anyway, I realized that I had not given myself some time to relax after school ended, so I decided to go for a run yesterday. *Dramatic…
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