“Extropy” is celebrating its first quarter of a century. The idea was formally introduced as a philosophy of the future in 1988, and many things have happened from the end of the 20th century to the beginning of the 21st century. A new millennium has been born and the philosophy of extropy is well-suited for these new times of accelerating change, full of challenges and opportunities.
In this month's Report on Business Magazine, a supplement that comes with The Globe and Mail, one of Canada's national newspapers, Stanford University's Mark Jacobson provides a best case scenario
Failures attract attention. Much like a car accident causing a gawker’s block along the highway, failure attracts onlookers, some with offers to help, others moving quickly to avoid being painted with the same failure brush. So what causes failure? Turns out that failure is just one relentless driver being perpetuated by a series of other relentless drivers. As we lift up the hood on this eight cylinder engine, here is what’s really going on.
Can one describe a society that is focuses on innovation in terms of ecology? Ecology by definition is a branch of biology that studies species within the larger context of the environment, how the species interact with each other and their surroundings.
Editor's Query: Disappearing Futures. What is likely to be here today and gone tomorrow? Many things we once thought we couldn't live without are now hard to find even in antique shops. And not just "things," but institutions, values, resources, diseases, languages, and people have all come and gone from our lives.
The Earth inhales and exhales cyclically. In the northern winter when plants are dormant CO2 spikes while the opposite occurs on the southern half of the planet. We have been measuring Earth's breaths at the Mauna Loa observatory in Hawaii since 1958.
Last week I finished reading Al Gore's latest tome, a follow up to his well publicized "An Inconvenient Truth," probably his most significant contribution to the global climate change debate, although I would think "debate" is an over statement at this stage. As I digested its pages I was drawn back to biblical texts form the Old Testament.
Futurists are talking about trend and developments all day long. They almost live the future (or multiple futures). Their job is to help stimulate strategic thinking about the future in organizations and people. The everyday reality is, that most people are busy with important business here and now. Things that are uncertain and far away do not make much of a connection to most people's reality.
By Michael Lee
“Observation informs us about the past and the present; reason foretells the future.”
Hans Reichenbach, The Rise of Scientific Philosophy (1951)
Nothing epistemologically exotic needs to be conjured up in order to develop a scientific method for studying the future. Futurology would simply hold itself accountable to customary disciplines of scientific thought.
One of the main criteria for scenarios about the future is that they are challenging. They also need to be relevant and plausible, but they should also trigger people's thinking. That means, scenarios need to contain creative elements, creative storylines that initiate the conversation about what the future may look like.