incidental writings: FUTURIST THEORIES | recent&future ideas
Right now us human beings are at a crossroad where technological explosion is met with the exciting (or upsetting?) possibilities of future. What is future like? Lots of people are thinking about that question, some with considerable seriousness and calculation, among them are tech innovator Kurzwell and theoretical physicist Kaku. This page is devoted to the all sorts of possible scenarios for the years to come, and although it is said even if there are time machines in the future, they can only return to the point where the machines are built (but travelling to the future is certainly theoretically more possible than traveling to the past), right now we have not been aware of such things. So until then, these theories are still mysterious, worth examining, and deserves our attention, possibly about how we are going to live our lives as well.
Michio Kaku: Parallel Universe
by John Crace[The Guardian]
Take a trip to a New York ice-rink at the weekend and you're likely to see a middle-aged Japanese man jumping and spinning in perfect harmony with Newtonian physics. This is Michio Kaku's idea of relaxation; no relativity, little friction - just one man and the three laws of motion. He moves almost effortlessly, his blades carving perfect patterns in the ice; but then the three-dimensional world should present few problems to a man who is equally at home in 11.Continue reading...
There will soon be seven billion people on the planet. By 2045 global population is projected to reach nine billion. Can the planet take the strain?
By Robert Kunzig
Photograph by Randy Olson
One day in Delft in the fall of 1677, Antoni van Leeuwenhoek, a cloth merchant who is said to have been the long-haired model for two paintings by Johannes Vermeer—“The Astronomer” and “The Geographer”—abruptly stopped what he was doing with his wife and rushed to his worktable. Cloth was Leeuwenhoek’s business but microscopy his passion. He’d had five children already by his first wife (though four had died in infancy), and fatherhood was not on his mind.To continue reading, click on the link above (title).
The revelatory account of the biggest threats we face as a species—and what we can do to save ourselves.
In the history of planet earth, mass species extinctions have occurred five times, about once every 100 million years. A “sixth extinction” is known to be underway now, with over 200 species dying off every day. Not only that, but the cause of the sixth extinction is also the source of single biggest threat to human life: our own inventions.
What this bleak future will truly hold, though, is much in dispute. Will our immune systems be attacked by so-called super bugs, always evolving, and now more easily spread than ever? Will the disappearance of so many species cripple the biosphere? Will global warming transform itself into a runaway effect, destroying ecosystems across the planet? In this provocative book, Fred Guterl examines each of these scenarios, laying out the existing threats, and proffering the means to avoid them.
This book is more than a tour of an apocalyptic future; it is a political salvo, an antidote to well-intentioned but ultimately ineffectual thinking. Though it’s honorable enough to switch light bulbs and eat home-grown food, the scope of our problems, and the size of our population, is too great. And so, Guterl argues, we find ourselves in a trap: Technology got us into this mess, and it's also the only thing that can help us survive it. Guterl vividly shows where our future is heading, and ultimately lights the route to safe harbor.
A series of columns on the perspectives of future, including tech, health, science, etc.
An interesting story:
3D printing powered by thought
Michio Kaku: Physics of the Future
Physics of the Future: How Science will Change Daily Life by 2100 by Michio Kaku - To Be Released on March 22, 2011
Based on interviews with over three hundred of the world’s top scientists, who are already inventing the future in their labs, Kaku—in a lucid and engaging fashion—presents the revolutionary developments in medi cine, computers, quantum physics, and space travel that will forever change our way of life and alter the course of civilization itself.
2045:The Year Man Becomes Immortal(TIME Magazine)by Lev Grossman
On Feb. 15, 1965, a diffident but self-possessed high school student named Raymond Kurzweil appeared as a guest on a game show called I've Got a Secret. He was introduced by the host, Steve Allen, then he played a short musical composition on a piano. The idea was that Kurzweil was hiding an unusual fact and the panelists — they included a comedian and a former Miss America — had to guess what it was.
On the show (see the clip on YouTube), the beauty queen did a good job of grilling Kurzweil, but the comedian got the win: the music was composed by a computer. Kurzweil got $200. (See TIME's photo-essay "Cyberdyne's Real Robot.")
Kurzweil then demonstrated the computer, which he built himself — a desk-size affair with loudly clacking relays, hooked up to a typewriter. The panelists were pretty blasé about it; they were more impressed by Kurzweil's age than by anything he'd actually done. They were ready to move on to Mrs. Chester Loney of Rough and Ready, Calif., whose secret was that she'd been President Lyndon Johnson's first-grade teacher.
Read more: http://www.time.com/time/health/article/0,8599,2048138,00.html#ixzz1DjLMMpPU
In 1954, a young Princeton University doctoral candidate named Hugh Everett III came up with a radical idea: That there exist parallel universes, exactly like our universe. These universes are all related to ours; indeed, they branch off from ours, and our universe is branched off of others. Within these parallel universes, our wars have had different outcomes than the ones we know. Species that are extinct in our universe have evolved and adapted in others. In other universes, we humans may have become extinct.
MIT study predicting ‘global economic collapse’ by 2030 still on track
A renowned Australian research scientist says a study from researchers at MIT claiming the world could suffer from a "global economic collapse" and "precipitous population decline" if people continue to consume the world's resources at the current pace is still on track, nearly 40 years after it was first produced.
The Smithsonian Magazine writes that Australian physicist Graham Turner says "the world is on track for disaster" and that current research from Turner coincides with a famous, and in some quarters, infamous, academic report from 1972 entitled, "The Limits to Growth." Turner's research is not affiliated with MIT or The Club for Rome.
Produced for a group called The Club of Rome, the study's researchers created a computing model to forecast different scenarios based on the current models of population growth and global resource consumption. The study also took into account different levels of agricultural productivity, birth control and environmental protection efforts. Twelve million copies of the report were produced and distributed in 37 different languages.
Most of the computer scenarios found population and economic growth continuing at a steady rate until about 2030. But without "drastic measures for environmental protection," the scenarios predict the likelihood of a population and economic crash.
More resources: Limit to Growth(http://limits-to-growth.org/)