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  • 01:05

    10 Years in the Future: Celebrating a Decade of Future Blogging

    in Technology

    This month marks the 10-year anniversary of hosts Phil Bowermaster and Stephen Gordon’s collaboration. This week they look back over a decade of tracking the future.

    Here's a small sample of what were talking about 10 years ago:

    Success: Memes or Materials? |  Still Number One! |  Pop Quiz! |  There's a Hole in the Bottom of the Sea |  Affordable Beauty |  No Matter What, He's Wrong |  The Next Ten Years: Some Speculations |  A Fisking Too Vigorous |  Going the Way of the Slide Rule |  Energy Punditry 101 |  Encyclopedia Galactica |  War of the Worlds II |  Here's a Trend... |  The Future of Wealth |  10 Predictions |  Bursting the Wi-Fi Bubble |  Our First Attempt at Global Warming |  Tiny Cameras Everywhere |  Now That the Idea Has Been Killed |  Wanna Bet? |  The Most Powerful Force? |  Navigating Possibility Space |  Seven Questions About the Future |  Man on the Run |  What Should Have Been |  

    So what has changed most in the intervening decade? What are the biggest surprises? And what is yet to come?

    Tune in and explore.

  • 00:33

    The Declaration of Singularity 2014

    in Technology

    What's the difference between the original Delcaration of Independence and the Speculist's Declaration of Singularity?

    Obviously one has already happened, and one has yet to happen. But what else? A few minor word changes aside, the big difference has to do with when things happen versus when they are declared to have happened.

    What can we make about recent headlines concerning the Turing Test, self-Driving cars, and other developments?  Do they change the Declaration at all?

    Or maybe is it time for a new declaration altogther?

    Tune in and explore!

    WT 083

  • 00:30

    Big is the New Small (or Maybe It's the Other Way Around)

    in Technology

    As we move into the future, is the trend for things to get smaller or bigger? Hosts Phil Bowermaster and Stephen Gordon consider some interesting developments:

    A tiny combustion engine
    A huge rocket
    A microscope for everyone

    So is big the new small or is small the new big? Or is something much more complicated taking place?

    Tune in and explore.

    (WT 069)

    Vintage microscope photo by Roby.

  • 00:32

    The Future Gone Bad Part 1: Human Downgrades

    in Technology

    A recent news story that has recieved quite a bit of attention tells us about a woman who claims she wants to become a living Barbie doll. To achieve that goal she is working on modifying her body and trying to reduce her intelligence. 

    Transhumanists talk a lot about our growing ability to alter our own bodies and minds, and how this will ultimately lead to greater intelligence and capability. But what happens if people decide to go the other way? What happens when people decide they want a downgrade?

    Hosts Phil Bowermaster and Stephen Gordon discuss some plausible scenarios for human downgrading, as well as some potential modifications that sound like a change for the better but that might lead in the opposite direction.

    Tune in and explore.

    (WT 061)

  • 00:29

    A Matter of Days: A Chapter for the World's Longest Book

    in Technology

    Host Phil Bowermaster demonstrates how quick and easy it can be to write a chapter for the book version of The World Transformed by composing his in real time on the show.

    Phil's chapter is called "A Matter of Days," which lays out the following world-transforming idea: people need to get focused on days. How many days do I have? How many days will it take to achieve what I most what to see happen? How many days until we reach the future we are all hoping for?

    Also, very important, how do I get more days if I need them?

    Tune in and explore!

    (WT 057)

  • 00:33

    Quantum Consciousness: Do Our Minds Control Reality?

    in Technology

    Hosts Phil Bowermaster and Stephen Gordon explore the relationship between consciousness and the physical world.

    Can our thoughts determine physical outcomes?

    Is consciousness itself a quantum phenomenon?

    What can a physiscist tell us about the relationship between mind and matter?

    Tune in and explore.

    (WT 056)





  • 00:33

    From Here to "Her": Closing in on Real Artificial Intelligence

    in Technology

    Hosts Phil Bowermaster and Stephen Gordon discuss the possibility that we will soon be interacting with intelligent agents like Tony Stark's digital assistant Jarvis in the Iron Man movies or Joaquin Phoenix's crush Samantha in Her. Our current interactions with Google and SIRI may be just a shadow of things to come.

    Developments that speak to this future capability:

    Digital fitness coaches
    Converstional Chatbots getting closer?
    Google's interesting moves towards Artificial Intelligence
    A proposed computing device with emotional intelligence

    How long before truly intelligent digital agents are not only a part of our lives, but real people who are in our lives?

    Tune in and explore.

    (WT 055)


  • 00:30

    The Art of Prediction: What Will You Do Next?

    in Technology

    Predicting the future is a daunting task. One area where would-be knowers of the future are making signficant progress is in predicting human behavior.

    Not to put to fine a point on it, they're getting pretty good at predicting YOUR behavior.

    Hosts Phil Bowermaster and Stephen Gordon talk through the implications of new predictive models, including:

    Tracking the outbreak of an epidimic based on search-engine activity
    Retailers shipping you your order before you've placed it.
    Psychological (and phsyiological) tests that might provide clues to violent or criminal behavior before it occurs.

    We no longer have to ask whether Big Brother is watching us. We know he is. The question, increasingly, is: how well does he know what we're going to do next? And what is he going to do about it?

    Tune in and explore.

    (WT 053)

  • 00:30

    Humanity Revised: Re-Engineering the Human Machine

    in Technology

    Hosts Phil Bowermaster and Stephen Gordon review two breakthrough biotech developments that promise to enable powerful human modification capabilities:

    Simplified editing of DNA

    Simplified production of Stem cells

    Human modification will have a tremendous impact on everything from medicine to parenting to athletics. How different is our world about to become?

    Tune in an explore.

    (WT 054) 

  • 00:30

    The Nine Billion Names of God

    in Technology

    Taking  a cue from George Dvorsky's The 7 Most Intriguing Philosophical Arguments for the Existence of God, hosts Phil Bowermaster and Stephen Gordon discuss the relationship between convergence, accelerating change, transcendence, and the divine.

    How do traditional (and non-traditional) ideas about God relate to such concepts as the Technological Singularity and the Simulation Hypothesis?

    Tune in and explore.

    (WT 051)

  • 00:33

    The Age of Wearable Computers

    in Technology

    It isn't enough that we have computers in our phones, our cars, our refrigerators, our coffee makers. Now we have them attached to our faces -- or elsewhere on our bodies. 

    How and why is this happening? How can a machine be so appealing that we wouldn't mind attaching it to ourselves?  How wil these devices like Google Glass and the Oculus Rift change the way we see the world?

    And how will they change the way others see us?

    And beyond that, how will they fundamentally change who and what we are?

    Tune in and explore.


    Oculus Rift photo by Sergey Galyonkin.


    (WT 050)