Blogs

Gizmos & Gadgets: Rowbot Robot Tends to Farmers' Fields

September 21, 2014 - No part of our highly technological economy today is free of being rethought by applying automation in the form of robots. In the past I have written about the use of field robots in agriculture.

Rising Tides - Mitigation versus Consternation

On two sides of the planet, two countries describe approaches to dealing with a consequence of climate change - rising sea levels. One has unveiled a multi-decade plan to counter this coastal threat. The other isn't even acknowledging the issue and instead an independent, not-for-profit, crowd-funded group is issuing independent findings.

The first country is The Netherlands.

Blue Origin to Replace Russia's RD-180 for U.S. Rocket Flights

Quietly lost in the background of this week's NASA announcements is the news that Jeff Bezos' company, Blue Origin, is to provide United Launch Alliance, owners of the Atlas V rocket, with a next generation engine technology for a next generation rocket. Although Boeing and SpaceX got the major headlines as the companies selected to provide crew-manned capsules for the International Space Station (ISS), Blue Origin may have the last laugh.

Disturbing Arctic Facts: Disease Migration and Dark Snow

Recent reports on areas north of 60 degrees latitude point to rapid climate change in this region of the planet. What's happening?

Every Government Official Should Read This: Choosing Between Economic Growth and Fighting Climate Change Is No Longer an Issue

In today's Financial Times, Pilita Clark has written an article titled "Growth and fighting global climate change not incompatible." Did you hear that? Economic growth, the creation of jobs, increased Gross National Product - you in government no longer have to concern yourselves that enacting climate change mitigation strategies is going to drive your country into depression or worse.

No One Should Think That Money Spent on NASA Is a Waste

One of my readers shared the following infographic, titled NASA Spinning Off Since 1962. It highlights the inventions, discoveries and economic return on investment resulting from NASA. For every dollar invested by the government the American economy and other countries economies have seen $7 to $14 in new revenue, all from spinoffs and licensing arrangements. That amounts to in $17.6 billion current NASA dollars spent to an economic boost worth as much as $246.4 billion annually.

The Futurist

In the September-October 2014 (Vol. 48, No. 5) Issue:

  • Futures Education: Teaching and Learning about the Future
  • Our Global Situation and Prospects for the Future
  • Seven Big Challenges for Pakistan—and the Lessons They Could Teach
  • Future View: 10 Questions for Machine Intelligence

Futurist Update

In the Current Issue:

  • Scots on the Move? Anticipating Unexpected Impacts of Scottish Independence
  • Preparing to Discover Future "Life"
  • Future Workplace Skill: Letting Things Go
  • Are We Reaching "Peak Meat"?
  • WFS CEO Amy Zalman Interviewed by CNBC, on the Next 25 Years
  • Exploding Bacon Robotics: A WorldFuture 2014 Highlight
  • What's Hot in The Futurist magazine

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Interviews

Predictive—and Persuasive—Technology: an interview with Chris Surdak, author of Data Crush

Mobile and Web technologies are making more and more data about us consumers and our lifestyle habits available to businesses. And in growing degrees, businesses are finding ways to use the data to both predict and influence their customers’ buying decisions.

Ensuring More Food for All: An Interview with Danielle Nierenberg of Food Tank

Subject(s):

As the world population grows, and as its resource bases shrink, producing enough food to feed the world becomes a steeper and steeper challenge. But the world’s small farms are up to the task, argues Danielle Nierenberg, president of the “food think tank” Food Tank.

The Future of Sharing

Living comfortably has always, to some extent, relied on owning many goods. But this is becoming less and less the case. A new worldwide “sharing economy," composed of startup ventures whose products consumers rent or share instead of own, is blossoming across the globe.

Reviews of New Books

Not Yet Dead: The Science of Staying Alive

Shocked: Adventures in Bringing Back the Recently Dead
Image of Shocked: Adventures in Bringing Back the Recently Dead
Author(s): David Casarett M.D.
Publisher: Current Hardcover (2014)
Binding: Hardcover, 304 pages
List Price: $27.95

David Casarett describes developments of novel techniques that bring nearly dead and even fully dead patients back to the land of the living.

Strategies for Doing Business When Resources Are Few

Overfished Ocean Strategy: Powering Up Innovation for a Resource-Deprived World
Image of Overfished Ocean Strategy: Powering Up Innovation for a Resource-Deprived World
Author(s): Nadya Zhexembayeva
Publisher: Berrett-Koehler Publishers (2014)
Binding: Hardcover, 208 pages
List Price: $27.95

Fish populations across the world are withering under unrelenting pressure from human population growth and rising demand for seafood. … Within this crisis lies a golden opportunity …

Teens and Social Media: Debunking the Myths

It's Complicated: The Social Lives of Networked Teens
Image of It's Complicated: The Social Lives of Networked Teens
Author(s): danah boyd
Publisher: Yale University Press (2014)
Binding: Hardcover, 296 pages
List Price: $25.00

Social media plays a huge role in young people’s lives and will continue to do so, but how exactly are its young users using it?

Strategies for Appropriate Development

Innovating for the Global South: Towards an Inclusive Innovation Agenda (Rotman/Utp - Monk Series on Global Affairs)
Image of Innovating for the Global South: Towards an Inclusive Innovation Agenda (Rotman/Utp - Monk Series on Global Affairs)
Author(s): Dilip Soman, Janice Gross Stein, Joseph Wong
Publisher: University of Toronto Press, Scholarly Publishing Division (2014)
Binding: Paperback, 192 pages
List Price: $22.95

The world has made some progress in relieving poverty and improving health in the world’s poorest countries, but it will take new methods …

Learn about the future of ...

Commerce

What increased interoperability within and between teams means for management and business.

Earth

Pakistan may be viewed as a case study of the fight for the survival of modern human civilization. Its complex and dangerous problems are not...

Futuring

Futures Studies as it has evolved since the early 1970s is both a discipline and a meta-discipline. It is a set of skills and applied...

Humanity

Experimental treatments might stop the disease before it starts.

Sci/Tech

People with vision impairments may soon get navigational assistance from artificially intelligent eyeglasses.

Governance

Government corruption costs U.S. taxpayers billions of dollars a year, and education programs typically end up shortchanged by compromised state...