Africa is Rising! Technology, like cell phones, is aiding Africa’s fantastic leap forward.
Immortality is a primary goal of many transhumanists, but not all. How many do or don’t want eternal life, and why? I recently conducted a survey - funded by Terasem Movement Inc., and fiscally sponsored by World Future Society - that queried hundreds of transhumanists on this question.
Imagine: you arrive at the party; you recognize no one; but immediately your internal antennae-and-computer begins to swap mind-files; within seconds the new acquaintances are scanned; you “know” everyone you see; you know who wants to sleep with you, work with you, laugh and/or be friends with you; you know everyone’s curiosities, intentions, memories - everyone’s brain is "naked"… Fully informed, you enter and mingle.
Where in the brain is intelligence? Why, anatomically, are some individuals “smarter” than others? What does a wise brain look like? Dr. Richard J. Haier of the University of California at Irvine has been using neuro-imaging technology for over two decades in his search to determine the anatomy of neuro-intelligence. I interviewed him recently on the progress and potential of his research:
Living in the USA is killing people, quite early. Prodigious wealth and scientific achievement isn’t keeping Americans around very long. Quite the opposite. Longevity rankings tabulated by the United Nations show the North American behemoth wheezing behind in 36th place, with a croak-time of 78.3 years, dying nearly four years earlier than the durable Japanese (82.6). Cubans live as long as Americans; Chileans and Costa Ricans live longer; so do workaholic South Koreans (2,357 person-hours) and hard-drinking Finland, where alcoholism is the #1 cause of death.
American atheists are elevating their presence in activism and charitable giving. Here's the evidence:
Enjoy forecasting? Seeking a community you can discuss predictions with? Enjoy arguing, en masse, about the course of humanity? Welcome to Facebook.
The Pirate Party of Berlin, Germany, garnered a shocking 8.9% of the votes in the city-state’s election two weeks ago, to place 15 representatives in Berlin's parliament. In a story on the result, the New York Times described Pirate Party leaders as "disarmingly honest... in their 20's and 30's... with no lack of confidence."
Researchers are discovering that only 50% of IQ is based on genetics. Environment determines the remaining half. Neurologists and other scientists are also pinpointing the myriad factors that elevate or decimate intelligence. PubMed.gov—the website of the USA’s National Institutes of Health and National Library of Medicine—lists 12,708 research studies that analyzed what makes us stupid or smart. Soon, I believe, we will be utilizing this data at home, in schools, and via government sanctions and support.
thwaaack! OUCH! thwaaack! OUCH! thwaaack! OUCH!
Many Westerners regard Singapore as a weird tropical tyranny where: 1) You get caned with a bamboo stick for spray-painting graffiti. 2) Chewing gum is prohibited. 3) You get executed via hanging if you're convicted of drug-dealing.
The tiny archipelago-on-the-equator is all that, it's true, but it's also an astonishing model mega-city success, with astute futuristic sensibilities in its environmental, business, educational, infrastructural, and technological policies.
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Essays and comments posted in World Future Society and THE FUTURIST magazine blog portion of this site are the intellectual property of the authors, who retain full responsibility for and rights to their content. For permission to publish, distribute copies, use excerpts, etc., please contact the author. The opinions expressed are those of the author. The World Future Society takes no stand on what the future will or should be like.
About Hank Pellissier
Hank Pellissier is the editor of Transhumanity.net. Previously to that he was Managing Director of the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technology (IEET). He's also been a columnist at the NYTimes/Bay Citizen, Salon.com, and SFGate.com, and feature writer for numerous publications. He's the author of Invent Utopia Now, and Why is the IQ of Ashkenazi Jews so High?
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You’ll rule tomorrow’s digital world. If a company fails to please you, you can wipe it off all your screens. With your finger on the kill switch, businesses will dedicate themselves to you. Routine identification will transform customer relationships and commerce. You will be known and treated personally. The most successful businesses will please everyone all the time. New tech will usher in a world where everyone wins.
In Our Final Invention (St. Martin’s Press 2013), documentary filmmaker James Barrat presents three scenarios for the long-term future of Artificial Intelligence. Unfortunately, as a skeptic he provides no preferred scenarios.
One of the advantages of being around for a long time is perspective. In particular, perspective in the field in which I chose to work many years ago – organizational and social transformation. I’m not talking about transforming a company or a city; I’m talking about transforming the whole world.
The latest resupply mission to the International Space Station (ISS) by SpaceX, Elon Musk's private company, met several milestones last week. First it delivered almost 3,500 pounds of supplies, including a space garden for growing vegetables, and legs for the on-board robot, Robonaut-2. But even more interesting was what happened at the back end of the launch.
Last night I watched an HBO documentary called "Questioning Darwin." It took an in-depth look at those who reject Darwin's theory of natural selection on grounds of faith in the words of the Judeo-Christian Bible. At the same time it presented the personal journey of Darwin from his roots to his presentation of his theories in the book, "The Origin of the Species," in which he described the mechanism of natural selection, the theory upon which our scientific understanding of how life evolves on this planet.
Google’s Director of Engineering, Ray Kurzweil, has predicted that we will reach a technological singularity by 2045, and science fiction writer Vernor Vinge is betting on 2029.
Sometimes simple ideas work, and this one is pretty simple.
There’s a new study out which, press outlets are telling me, shows that the United States is now an oligarchy, ruled by the rich and powerful, and perhaps that the US has been sliding in this direction for decades.