Contents for
July-August 2009
Volume 43, No. 4

for digital content

Published since 1966
A magazine of forecasts, trends, and ideas about the future.

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Tomorrow in Brief
Ice That “Burns”
Trouble Ahead for Suburbanites?
Sunny—with a 50% Chance of Migraine!
Rising Sea Levels Will Threaten New York
WordBuzz: Open Dictionary

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Assessing Global Trends for 2025
In November 2008, the National Intelligence Council released a landmark study, Global Trends 2025: A Transformed World. The report lays out the possibility of a future very different from the reality to which most of the world is accustomed. THE FUTURIST asked four experts — Newt Gingrich,  Elaine C. Kamarck, Peter Schiff, and Dennis Kucinich — for their views on the report’s key forecasts and what the future of the United States, Asia, and the global economy looks like now, in the wake of the global financial crisis. PDF Version Available.


Mining Information from the Data Clouds
By Erica Orange
This cloud of data that we daily contribute to may yield a wealth of new, vital information. “Cloud mining” may soon allow us to predict behaviors of the masses and even offer advice, according to a business futurist. PDF Available.

A Rendezvous with Austerity: How American Consumers Will Learn New Habits
By David Pearce Snyder
The forces of global economic retraction and technological evolution are altering the outlook for American consumers. If they can tighten their belts awhile, they may yet see a new form of prosperity—one whose well-being is more sustainable. PDF Available.

The Automation of Invention
By Robert Plotkin
Yesterday’s inventors toiled away in workshops, painstakingly designing, building, testing, and refining their creations. In contrast, tomorrow’s inventors will spend their days writing descriptions of the problems they want to solve, and then hand those descriptions over to computers to work out the solutions. PDF Available.

Stephen Thaler’s Imagination Machines

Inventor Stephen Thaler discusses his revolutionary form of AI — a highly proficient synthetic consciousness that has quietly existed for more than 30 years.


Ten Forces Driving Business Futures
By Michael Richarme
In a struggling economy, the forces of change are putting more pressures on businesses and from more directions. Success requires both staying on top of current trends and spotting new ones over the horizon. PDF Available.

By Cynthia G. Wagner
They may not be Picasso or Van Gogh, but supercomputres are bringing out the stunning beauty of science via data visualization and simulations.
Order the July-August Issue for access. 

Big Ideas for Saving the Earth
Some of the most thoughtful work on the topic of climate change appears in Jamais Cascio’s new e-book, Hacking the Earth. Cascio is a Bay Area futurist who worked with Global Business Network during the 1990s and is currently a research affiliate at the Institute for the Future, a global futures strategist at the Center for Responsible Nanotechnology, and a fellow at the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies. Review by Bob Olson

 How Evolution Is Evolving
Mainstream science maintains that humans stopped evolving about 50,000 years ago. Civilization put an end to process. Therefore, the human of the pre-modern era is the human of today and will be the human tomorrow, right? Not so fast, say scientists Gregory Cochran and Henry Harpending. In The 10,000 Year Explosion, they argue that humankind is evolving even faster in the modern age. We developed new genetic traits as recently as the Middle Ages. The Ashkenazi (or European) Jews, for instance, don’t just seem smarter; they demonstrate a genetic predisposition toward higher intelligence. By Patrick Tucker


Are Small Governments Getting Too Big?
Local and state governments in the U.S. may be restricting individual rights.

How to Win at Social Networking
New technologies still require old fashioned manners
Order the July-August Issue for access.

Internet Fraud on the Rise
Spike in Internet crime complaints concerns U.S. law enforcement.


Iceless Arctic Summers by 2040
Arctic warming may enable more travel, but at what price?
Order the July-August Issue for access. 

Building the Internet of the Future
More fibers, faster downloads are key to more capable Internet.

Healthy People, Healthy Communities
Good health, like good real-estate, is about 'l'ocation, location, location."


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