Google+ The World 2 Come: May 2004

Monday, May 31, 2004

Five years from now...

"Assume that:
- Hard drive space is free
- Wifi like connections are everywhere
- Connections speeds are 10 to 100 times faster
- Everyone has a digital camera
- Everyone carries a device that is sort of like a laptop, but cheap and tiny
- The number of new products introduced every day is five times greater than now
- Wal-Mart's sales are three times as big
- Any manufactured product that's more than five years old in design sells at commodity pricing
- The retirement age will be five years higher than it is now
- Your current profession will either be gone or totally different

What then?"

Source: Seth's Blog
See also:
Future Vision - Vodafone
2010 - Wikipedia
August 2009: How Google beat Amazon and Ebay to the Semantic Web
Moore's Lore
Robotic Nation Evidence
The Age of Spiritual Machines
Wi-Fi - Wikipedia
RFID - Wikipedia
Internet2 - Wikipedia
Semantic Web - Wikipedia
Wearable computer - Wikipedia

Friday, May 28, 2004

The Day After Tomorrow

"Doug Randall wrote (along his boss at Global Business Network, Peter Schwartz) what has come to be known as 'the Pentagon study' on abrupt climate change. Their scenaric findings -- that the gradual global warming we're experiencing could plausibly trigger an abrupt climate snap, and that its effects would be massive, perhaps catastrophic, and of direct relevance to the national security of the United States -- we're picked up by media around the world, gathering a snowball of controversy and hype along the way. Their scenarios, freely available on the Web, were termed a 'secret Pentagon report,' and their descriptions of possible climate catastrophe taken as bald prediction.

But underneath the hype was a reasoned attempt to judge the seriousness of the threat posed by climate instability. That's something all of us hoping to change the world have to take into account. So we asked Doug about the implications of that report (now that the dust has settled), the movie The Day After Tomorrow, and how to think about the future of climate change."

Source: WorldChanging
See also:
Dry /Ice: Global Warming Revealed
The Pentagon and Abrupt Climate Change
GBN: Abrupt Climate Change
A Feel-Good Disaster Movie
The Day After Tomorrow
PhysicsWeb - Models within models
The Day After Tomorrow - IMDB
The Day After Tomorrow - Yahoo! Movies
Arctic Getting Warmer Faster
Big Climate Shifts in the Arctic
Ocean and Climate Change Institute - Abrupt Climate Change
Swiss Re - Economic dimension of climate change
Climate change - Wikipedia
Hollywood, Science and the End of the World

Thursday, May 27, 2004

What 2034 will bring

"According to Moore's Law, computer power doubles every 18 months, meaning that computers will be a million times more powerful by 2034. According to Nielsen's Law of Internet bandwidth, connectivity to the home grows by 50 percent per year; by 2034, we'll have 200,000 times more bandwidth. That same year, I'll own a computer that runs at 3PHz CPU speed, has a petabyte (a thousand terabytes) of memory, half an exabyte (a billion gigabytes) of hard disk-equivalent storage and connects to the Internet with a bandwidth of a quarter terabit (a trillion binary digits) per second."

Source: CNET News
See also:
Talking to Bill Gates
Intel Research
Microsoft Research
IBM Research
Google Labs
21st century - Wikipedia
I, Robot

Tuesday, May 25, 2004

Nanotechnology - Small matter, many unknowns

"Nanotechnology is a major new approach in industrial production and reflects the general downsizing and miniaturisation efforts prevalent in all technological disciplines.

While its commercial utilisation has triggered debate in specialist circles and the term 'nanotechnology' itself is rapidly becoming a media buzzword, there is still no universal assessment of the opportunities and hazards of this new scientific discipline. The word 'nanotechnology' itself actually connotes less a technology than a generic term for a large number of applications and products which contain unimaginably small particles and demonstrate special properties as a result.

Are these invisible particles dangerous to our breathing? What happens if nanotechnologically manufactured products end up on the refuse dump and their particles are released into the environment? Too little is known about risks of this kind, and the paucity of data gives rise to a host of fears and alarmist scenarios."

Source: Swiss Re
See also:
Nanotechnology - Wikipedia

Monday, May 24, 2004

The Soulmate Manifesto

"Spreading the knowledge of this book will increase social and human capital. Social capital is a feature of society that facilitates coordination and cooperation for mutual benefit. Human capital is the time, personal skills, capabilities, experience, and knowledge of an individual.

By making the search for love efficient, society and individuals will benefit greatly. Imagine a future where people can find their soulmates easily. When the person that you are with is beating or cheating on you, you can easily leave to find another love. Instead of going on hundreds of meaningless dates, you can be pursuing other endeavors. How many broken hearts will be spared? Imagine a world where divorce does not exist. How much time, money, and energy are used to search for love? How much are wasted on wrong relationships? Resources that once were used to find love will now be used to pursue innovations and discover talents. Dreams that were once dormant will come true. Life will be richer and more meaningful because everybody will have time to discover their calling in this world. People will be happier because more people will be in love.

The problem of finding the right person is not isolated to love. Private equity, investment banking, entertainment, publishing, job placement, and other industries will benefit from the solution. Investment bankers, venture capitalists, and angel investors all use a matchmaking model. They are players in an industry where entrepreneurs or companies are matched to investors. Solving dating will also make industries that use the matchmaking model more efficient. Imagine you have an idea or a screenplay and need to find the right people to make them a reality. In the future, it will be a lot easier to make your dreams come true. Society will benefit from accessing ideas and talents that were once hidden because of the cost of finding them were too high. I believe the person or company that solves dating will be a candidate for a Nobel Prize one day."

Source: Social Grid
See also:
Love - Wikipedia

Friday, May 21, 2004

Adventures in the Third Dimension

"The phone rings. You answer. A Barbie-doll-size hologram of your daughter appears on your desk. She jumps up and down excitedly and tells you about her report card. Next comes an international teleconference. You go to the boardroom, and there, sitting around the table, are three-dimensional images of your overseas colleagues talking to you. After work you go to a shop to buy a new dress for your daughter. The clerk calls up a life-size hologram of her and projects different items on her, letting you choose the ones that look best.

The events above sound like science fiction, but they're not. The technology behind such wonders is on view at research labs in Japan. Stunning progress in liquid crystal displays, graphics processing and broadband are finally bringing 3-D displays into homes and offices--without the need for goofy red-and-blue tinted glasses."

Source: Forbes
See also:
Sharp Electronics
The 3D Industry Forum
MIT Media Lab
NTT Docomo
Hitachi Advanced Research Laboratory

Thursday, May 20, 2004

The NeuroAge

"In the opening interview for Neo Files #7, Zack Lynch indicates that advances in brain science and technology has not yet produced the utterly brainwashed societies predicted in 1984 and Brave New World feared by so many."

Source: NeoFiles
See also:
A chat about neurotechnology with Zack Lynch
Neuroscience - Wikipedia
Brain - Wikipedia
How Your Brain Works
What is the world's fastest computer?

The 4D House

"In 1927, in the privately circulated draft entitled 4D, later printed as part of 4D Timelock Fuller outlined his vision of shipping mass-produced houses around the world by Zeppelin, to be accessible by means of small planes capable of prolonged ground-taxiing."

"There is no question that what I have predicted will come about."
R. Buckminster Fuller, 1928

Source: Future Hi
See also:
Buckminster Fuller - Wikipedia
Airship - Wikipedia
How Blimps Work

Wednesday, May 19, 2004

The Space Klondike

"Though our attention is focused on earthbound events these days, it's likely that the long-term future of humanity will be far more influenced by our progress toward space."

Source: Tech Central Station
See also:
Ray Bradbury: The Illustrated Spaceman
The Mars Society
Astrobiology Magazine

Tuesday, May 18, 2004

The virtual city

"A virtual reality exhibition in London is letting visitors take in the sights and sounds of the capital's darker side."

" Virtual reality (VR) has allowed for clever recreations of the past, and interactive tours of historical places."

Source: BBC News
See also:
Virtual reality - Wikipedia
Virtual Reality Blog
Terra Nova
How Augmented Reality Will Work
Digital Space
My Virtual Model
BBC - Human Body
The Medical Learning Company
Virtual Soldiers? Dream on, Darpa
How to Build a Virtual Human

Monday, May 17, 2004

A Home Test for Parallel Universes

"A parallel universe, it may surprise you to learn, is actually detectable in your own home, office, or almost anywhere indoors. All that’s required is a red laser pointer, a pin, and a piece of paper."

Source: allsci
See also:
David Deutsch - Wikipedia
Centre for Quantum Computation
An introduction to Quantum Computing
How Quantum Computers Will Work
Richard Feynman - Wikipedia
Michio Kaku - Wikipedia

High-definition TV

"High-definition TV will forever change the way we watch TV. Watching HDTV is like looking through a window. You really feel like you're seeing something in person."

Source: U.S.News
See also:
High definition television - Wikipedia
Watch Out for Hologram TV
Holography - Wikipedia
How Holographic Environments Will Work

Friday, May 14, 2004

The best web sites

The Webby Awards 2004 winners:
Google, BBC News, Wikipedia, HowStuffWorks, Livejournal, PBS, The Onion, Meetup, iTunes Music Store...Interesting...My favourite ones...

Source: The Webby Awards
See also:
Party's gone, but the Webby awards go on
TIME's 50 Best Websites

Life as Game

"Just as film and television eclipsed the stage and literature as the dominant mediums of expression in the 20th century, computer games are emerging as the new ambassador of culture and taste for the 21st."

Source: Future Salon
See also:
Inside the world's largest game arcade
Gamers Spurning TV, Movies
E3: Loud and Garish as Ever
Japan-U.S. divide splits video game industry
Game Theories

Wednesday, May 12, 2004

The Frontline Moblogs

"Jim and I are amazed at the variety of pictures we see on Yafro, but the most amazing by far are the pictures taken by soldiers on the Frontline in Iraq. We are happy that Yafro enables them to give us all a glimpse into their lives that we rarely get from the Media. Straight from the source, it doesn't get any cooler than that!"

Source: Yafro Moblog
See also:
Moblogging the Next Big Thing
Moblog - Wikipedia
The Transparent Society

The new Reformation

"Once the Church lost the ability to control the direct perception of scripture, thanks to the printing of (relatively) cheap bibles in languages other than Latin, their loss of political hegemony followed."

"Now we are in a mirror world, where the newly free production and distrubution of images is the novelty."

"New tools for spreading of the word are powerful, of course — witness the weblog explosion in all its complexity. But the spread of images is a different kind of thing, not least because images pass across linguistic borders like a lava flow. Now that production and distribution of images are in the hands of the laity, it’s a safe bet that we are entering a world of 'That will kill this.' We just don’t know what parts of society 'this' refers to yet."

Source: Corante
See also:
Clay Shirky’s site
Social software - Wikipedia
Moblogs Seen as a Crystal Ball for a New Era in Online Journalism
Smart Mobs

Tuesday, May 11, 2004

We Can End the War with Terrorism

"Suppose you wanted to successfully end the war on terrorism, in a way that was just and secured freedom to the maximum extent. If that is what you wanted, achieving that end would actually be simple. Not easy, but simple."


Intel's New Strategy

"Intel's decision to turn away from straight-ahead development of its Pentium IV and Xeon lines, in favor of putting all its eggs in low-power chips, is a big, big deal."

Source: Corante
See also:
Intel focuses on 'dual-core' chips

Monday, May 10, 2004

The high-tech war

"Arthur Cebrowski explains in this interview how "network-centric warfare" is changing the way we fight wars."

Source: PBS
See also:
Defense Tech

Asimov Laws

"Famous science fiction writer Isaac Asimov's 'Three Laws of Robotics', a plot device invented in the 1940s. They are:

- A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.
- A robot must obey the orders given it by human beings except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.
- A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Laws.

Amazingly, there are still people who take these laws seriously and suppose they would work as a viable strategy for AI creation. Asimov Laws are far too simplistic, open to varying interpretations, anthropocentrically biased, and adversarial to qualify as a serious engineering strategy for AI morality. Asimov Laws are also predicated on the false assumptions that 1) AIs cannot become independent moral agents, let alone possess kinder-than-human morality, 2) AIs will always be mechanical, in appearance and in thought, 3) creating a human-friendly AI is a lot like coercing a human into being human-friendly. Asimov Laws also present themselves as semantic primitives - because they are to humans - therefore neglecting the vast underlying complexity that would be required to even approximate these laws in a real AI. The modern-day field of AI Friendliness is an attempt to go beyond Asimov Laws and similar ideas, creating workable strategies for safe AI goal systems. See also design-contingent philosophy, Friendliness, Friendship architecture, goal systems."

Source: AcceleratingFuture
See also:
Three Laws of Robotics
Isaac Asimov
Creating Friendly AI
I, Robot

3 Laws Unsafe

"3 Laws Unsafe will be a website campaign from the Singularity Institute. The campaign will tie in to the July 16th release of 'I, Robot,' the feature film based on Isaac Asimov's short story collection of the same name where his 3 Laws of Robotics were first introduced.

The 3 Laws of Robotics represent a popular view of how to construct moral AI, and their failures were often explored by Isaac Asimov in his stories. What we hope to do is advance the Asimov tradition of deconstructing the 3 Laws. We want to encourage critical, technical thinking on whether they're real solutions to moral AI creation.

To achieve a successful campaign, the benefits of which will be large, requires help from many. If you can contribute to 3 Laws Unsafe, please email us at We also invite you to join our volunteers mailing list where campaign discussion will occur; and to use our internal Wiki, the URL of which is available on request."

Source: Singularity Institute for Artificial Intelligence

"Aristotle" (The Knowledge Web)

"With the knowledge web, humanity's accumulated store of information will become more accessible, more manageable, and more useful. Anyone who wants to learn will be able to find the best and the most meaningful explanations of what they want to know. Anyone with something to teach will have a way to reach those who what to learn. Teachers will move beyond their present role as dispensers of information and become guides, mentors, facilitators, and authors. The knowledge web will make us all smarter. The knowledge web is an idea whose time has come."

Source: Edge

Saturday, May 08, 2004

Sci-Fi Writer Stanislaw Lem on Down-to-Earth Issues

"If there were an instrument to gauge thought concentration, it would show an off-scale reading in a house on the outskirts of Krakow where an 83-year-old writer/philosopher has been closely observing the world."

Source: Moscow News
See also:
Stanislaw Lems's site
Stanislaw Lem - Wikipedia
Lem's ideology

The Future Of Digital Imaging

"Imagine having a 17-inch screen constantly at your disposal that lets you look up information online, check your e-mail or watch a movie--and that isn't attached to a laptop."

Source: Forbes

The future according to IBM

"A recent white paper from IBM's consulting services division envisions what the media and entertainment industries will look like in 2010 and how the changes will impact consumers."

Source: U.S.News
See also:
IBM Research
The 3-D Web

Friday, May 07, 2004

Gurus of Tech

"What's the latest from leaders in the fields of nanotech, genomics, search, and robotics? Here are their progress reports and more."

Source: Business Week

Thursday, May 06, 2004

NextFest: The Shape of Things to Come

"A celebration of the cars, spacecraft, gadgets, drugs, and TV of the future, including: William Gibson on extreme ads & TiVo tribes • Nanobombs & microbots • 5 designs for the dream machines of 2014 • More!"

Source: Wired
See also:

Wednesday, May 05, 2004

64-Bit Desktop by 2006

"The transition from 32-bit to 64-bit desktop computers will happen dramatically faster than most experts have predicted, with many users switching within the next two years, one industry analyst says.

'The switch to 64-bit desktops will happen very quickly,' says Steve Kleynhans, vice president of technology research services at the firm Meta Group. He expects the majority of users to make the move to 64-bit desktops by 2006, he told industry insiders during Microsoft's WinHEC conference here this week. PCs equipped with a 64-bit processor and operating system can address dramatically more memory than today's PCs, offering the potential for huge increases in computational power. The move to 64-bit computing on the server side is already under way, and Kleynhans predicts a 'complete transition to 64-bit servers by mid-2005.' "

Source: PC World
See also:
64-bit desktop - Google News

Smart Factories

"From drugs to food to molecular robots, these aren't your father's assembly lines."

"Manufacturers know that to survive is to change. And the changes they're making are sweeping now and will soon be revolutionary."

"The era of nano-manufacturing is being born in hundreds of labs that are racing to perfect a technique called self-assembly."

Source: Business Week

Tuesday, May 04, 2004

The Doctor Will Freeze You Now

"Human antifreeze could kick-start the cryonics game by making it easier to perform low-temperature surgery, according to Wired magazine."

"Cryonics is the practice of preserving organisms, or at least their brains, for possible future revival by storing them at cryogenic temperatures where metabolism and decay are almost completely stopped."

Source: Wired
See also:
Cryonics - Wikipedia

Responsible Nanotechnology

"Molecular nanotechnology (MNT) manufacturing means the ability to build devices, machines, and eventually whole products with every atom in its specified place. MNT is coming soon—almost certainly within 20 years, and perhaps in less than a decade. When it arrives, it will come quickly. Molecular manufacturing can be built into a self-contained, tabletop factory that makes cheap products efficiently at molecular scale. The time from the first assembler to a flood of powerful and complex products may be less than a year. The potential benefits of such a technology are immense. Unfortunately, the risks are also immense.

Even a primitive diamond-building nanofactory can create products vastly more powerful than today's versions. Electrical power can be converted to motion, and vice-versa, with one-tenth the power loss and about 108 (100,000,000) times more compactly. Computers can be a billion times smaller and use a million times less power. Materials can be about 100 times stronger than steel. This means that most human-scale products would consist almost entirely of empty space, reducing material requirements and cost. Most of the rest of the product would be structural, easy to design. Even the simplest products could be software-controlled at no extra hardware cost. Manufacturing of prototypes would be quite rapid—a few minutes to a few hours. Because manufacturing and prototyping are the same process, a successful prototype design could immediately be distributed for widespread use. A designer working with a few basic predesigned blocks could design, build, and test a simple product in less than a day. Products with complex interfaces to humans or to their surroundings—information appliances, automobiles, aerospace hardware, medical devices—would be limited by the time required to develop their software and test their functionality. However, in some fields the high time and money cost of manufacture slows other parts of the development cycle; this effect would disappear. An explosion of new, useful products could rapidly follow the widespread availability of a nanofactory."

Source: Center for Responsible Nanotechnology
See also:
Foresight Institute

Bruce Schneier: Beyond Fear

In his lated book, Beyond Fear, security guru Bruce Schneier challenges the post-9/11 national security practices. Here are some teasers:
  • "We're seeing so much nonsense after 9/11, and so many people are saying things about security, about terrorism that just makes no sense."
  • "Homeland security measures are an enormous waste of money."
  • "If the goal of security is to protect against yesterday's attacks, we're really good at it."
  • "The system didn't fail in the way the designers expected."
  • "Attackers exploit the rarity of failures."
  • "More people are killed every year by pigs than by sharks, which shows you how good we are at evaluating risk."
  • "Did you ever wonder why tweezers were confiscated at security checkpoints, but matches and cigarette lighters--actual combustible materials--were not?...If the tweezers lobby had more power, I'm sure they would have been allowed on board as well."
  • "When the U.S. Government says that security against terrorism is worth curtailing individual civil liberties, it's because the cost of that decision is not borne by those making it."
  • "...people make bad security trade-offs when they're scared."
Source: IT Conversations
See also:
Bruce Schneier
Bruce Schneier - Wikipedia

Monday, May 03, 2004

Creative destruction

"With his new novel, 'The Zenith Angle,' Bruce Sterling abandons the cyborg future for the more terrifying present of amoral terrorists and capitalists."

See also:
Bruce Sterling's blog
Bruce Sterling at SXSW

Sunday, May 02, 2004

Trading In A Cloud Of Electrons

"Futurist Paul Saffo talks about fundamental changes the Web has wrought in business and culture -- and what's next."

Source: BusinessWeek
See also:
Institute for the Future
Future Now

The world's most influential people

"Every day, millions of people go to work -- whether it is an office, a laboratory, an athletic field or a music studio -- but only a few rise to the top. The TIME 100 recognizes the world's most influential people in business, art, politics, science and other fields, men and women who have made a major impact on society, for better or worse."

Source: CNN

Jaron Lanier at the Future Salon

"The main thrust of the talk was that there are lots of different 'ramps' which people can use to judge progress. There’s a ramp of technology, which progresses from the most basic innovations such as fire and the wheel and moves out to a life that looks something like the Jetsons or something called the technological singularity. Of course we’re not sure exactly where the ramp ends up, which is part of the reason we as humans find satisfaction in advancing it. There’s also a ramp of morality, starting with brutal kill-or-be-killed life and progressing to some kind of rainbows and sunshine perfect existence."

Source: Eric Nehrlich
See also:
Jaron Lanier - Wikipedia
Future Salon

Saturday, May 01, 2004


"We are entering the time when robots are among us and the new question is: Could a robot do 'good' and 'evil'? We know about robots helping mankind in scientific, humanitarian and ecological enterprises, useful for safeguarding our planet and its inhabitants. But we heard also about 'intelligent' weapons which kill people."

See also:
Robotic Nation Evidence
Robots - Google News