to ACC2003, all registered
attendees are requested to submit a brief, optional participant
statement of personal passions (topics of interest, information
to share, resources to recommend), and current and open problems
for which they are seeking solutions. These statements are then
assembled into the Conference
Handbook to optimize peer-to-peer
networking and discussion. To submit your participant statement,
are participant statements that we've received from registered attendees.
Amkreutz, Author, Digital Spirit, Principal, Digital Crossroads
In the 1960’s I read Theilhard de Chardin’s
phenomenon of man. I was seventeen, fascinated by his explanation
of evolution, and mystified by his Noosphere. Throughout my thirty-five
years in Information Technology, as a researcher, scientist, university
professor, consultant, executive, and entrepreneur, the fascination
grew. Today, with digital technology – artificial intelligence,
internet and everything else ‘digital’ – a new
era of evolution has started. Technology, however, is ‘just’
like a finger on our hand. We admire the finger. Ask questions about
it. Wonder about its future shape. But do we know the direction
of the finger as we point it towards the future? And there you have
it: understanding that direction of evolution, and understanding
the dance of knowledge and technology that will determine our future,
is my passion.
what brought us here. Not just biological evolution that covers
less than a third of our history, but evolution from the Big Bang
to the Bursting of the Dot.com Bubble. Evolution it is what will
carry us into the future, with or without humans in their current
We need to embrace
evolution with a new passion that turns the defenseless passivity
of ultra-Darwinian thinking around, and transform it to new élan
of proactive creativity. As I describe in my book Digital Spirit,
we are in the midst of the biggest evolutionary singularity since
life emerged on our planet. A singularity that is at the source
of the technological singularity we talk about at the ACC2003 conference.
The acknowledgement of this deeper evolutionary singularity will
change the way we think in the coming 30 years. This will lead to
the start of a redesign of our political, social, economic and religious
the September issue of my ‘Digital Reach Letter’ to
the subject of this conference. Those interested please visit at
where you can also find a few questions that I would like to ask
Underlying all of the divides on our planet today
– poverty, extremism, famine, disease, and so forth –
is the Knowledge Divide. Digital Technology exposes this divide
like nothing else, ever. This is a source of hope, as it points
us to the locations of the bridgeheads that we have to build. Accelerating
change does not ‘just happen’ in a vacuum, but is driven
by mindsets shaped by the knowledge at their ‘disposal’.
My hope is that the construction of better knowledge bridges is
(high) on the agenda of the ACC2003 community that John Smart has
started with so much passionate energy. Bridging the knowledge divide
is simply a matter of life or death.
websites offer a wealth of information, and links to many other
thought-provoking sites. I’d like to add http://www.edge.com
for a look at the frontier of scientific thinking, and, of course,
my personal website at http://www.digeality.com.
Arter, The Audit Guy, American Society for Quality
For most of
my business life, I have studied means of controlling the quality
of products, processes, and systems. I am a well-known author of
books and articles on measuring business practices and using the
results to improve the enterprise. I am an early adapter of technologies
and use them to improve others and myself. I became aware of the
NBIC convergence about a year ago and fully expect it to continue.
Huxley was right, however, in his reference to the Alphas, Betas,
and Gammas. Humanity will continue to have a certain percentage
of those who will never understand, much less accept, the evolution
of life on this planet.
As an expert
in quality management practices and the evaluation of those practices,
I am trying to understand if we will reach a point where the human
has little or no control over the making of goods and delivery services.
Machines now control much of the quality of these tasks. Do we reach
a point where the human cannot measure, much less understand, the
inherent variation of manufacturing? As certain businesses master
perfection, what does that do to their competitors? To less developed
I have a personal
web site at http://www.quality.org/arter/,
but it is only used to sell my services to others. I use the American
Society for Quality (http://www.asq.org)
for my professional networking and intend to start a web log shortly.
I subscribe to several Linux and Open Source news feeds, in order
to understand this new community of software developers and users.
Austin, Advanced Technology Group, Xbox
I'd have to
say I'm most fascinated with learning; how it works in humans, and
how it can work in computers. Learning is at the core of what makes
us higher-functioning creatures; adapting within the context of
our minds rather than through successive generations. I think the
acceleration of technology is largely due to the increase in the
proportion of society devoted to technological research and advancement;
we still have many years left, but I don't see it as a limitless
My current project deals with a compressed method of storing information
to facilitate induction. I'm applying it to form a loose grammatic
structure of arbitrary language. I'm interested in ways to look
for patterns as part of general relationships, rather than having
to specify the format the relationships can take (i.e. proximity
relationships for grammar, order relationships for numbers, group
relationships for clustering).
A. Bain, Senior Agency Business Analyst, Agency Association
Evidence from a variety of sources
hints at a law of nature governing evolution of life from its inception
to the development of technological planetary societies.
Computer simulations of evolutionary
processes have demonstrated that autocatalysis may have been a significant
accelerant in the early evolution of increasingly life-like pre-biological
systems that in turn might have evolved and combined into single-cell
Other computer simulations have shown
that evolution occurs most rapidly in systems that operate at the
edge of chaos, neither rigidly held in place nor entirely disordered.
They also show that systems governed by rules that encourage cooperation
tend to be more evolutionarily dynamic than those based on purely
competitive rule sets.
In nature and in computer simulations,
evolution seems to speed up as the evolving system becomes more
complex and diverse. It took a billion years or so for single-cell
organisms to evolve into multi-cell life forms, but significantly
and progressively shorter periods of millions of years for multi-cell
organisms to evolve into arthropods, fish, land animals, mammals
and eventually human beings.
This progressive shortening of evolutionary
cycles continues through human evolution into civilizations and
lately into technological societies. Accelerating technological
change would appear to be merely the most recent, visible and rapid
manifestation of a general process of accelerating change as our
society and its planet becomes ever more complex and integrated.
Ultimately, for those who dislike the
entropic death of the universe predicted by the second
law of thermodynamics, this observable process of apparently negentropic
evolution holds out
the tantalizing possibility that our universe may be neither as
closed nor as random as many
physicists have predicted.
Baran, President, Baraness Ventures
that fascinate me most are a) how humans can interact and grow with
the ever increasing rate of technological change while evolving
the appropriate moral and ethical systems to remain human, b) how
do we pass on to each new generation fundamentals that work while
still allowing them their experience of the new and c) how does
our understanding of the sweep of history inform our future? In
30 years, I hope to be ever challenged by youth, enlightened by
elders and entertained by my peers. Accelerating change is here,
I just don't think the rate will progress in a pure line, but there
will be slower and more rapid periods - the slower periods allow
for more integration and assimilation - we'll just have to learn
to do this more effectively. Our development priorities will need
to include evolving our human mental, emotional, unconsious and
spiritual systems to accommodate the change.
I work in the
area of business strategy and find the ANYTHING that expands my
thinking beyond the normal information available through mass media
is beneficial in the long run. Sometimes it's a matter of gathering
new data; sometimes I find new ways to look at problems that can
be applied in my discipline, sometimes I run into ways of relating
that are so foreign that I have to really stretch myself to figure
out where someone is coming from. All of these experiences add value
and create a framework and discipline for accommodating the changing
pace of the world more easily and gracefully. The most difficult
area that I find challenging and would like to discuss with the
group is the changing moral structure of our society.
written a series of articles called "The Human Strategist",
available online at www.virtualstrategist.net,
dealing with some of these issues and pontificating on our need
to remain human through it all. For business/world perspective,
I recommend reading a non-US source, such as The Economist,
for a more complete grounding on basic politial, financial and social
changes going on around the world. My personal webpage, including
a recommended reading list, is www.baranessventures.com.
Boswell, Concept Development Manager, Business Futures Group
Trying to understand
what the future could be like and explaining it to others not only
fascinates me but absorbs by working life. I am a great believer
in Alan Kay's quote, "The best way of predicting the future
is to invent it." However, you can't invent everything! So
what are the implications of things you don't yet understand? I
find it hard to believe Moore's Law will continue for 30 years but
see no obvious signs that it won't in the foreseeable future. So,
to which mast should your colours be nailed? The implications of
continued acceleration will have a massive impact on Inclusion /
Exclusion – who will be taken along, who will be left behind?
Should priority be on inclusive technology to limit social backlash?
My main challenge
is to understand the dynamics of exploiting change in different
marketplaces and when to apply new solutions. What will be the next
big cultural / behavioural / inspirational technology and how will
it change us? On a personal basis, dealing with information overload
and the pace of life impacts social relationships. How can you 'get
out' without 'getting off' and find time for relaxation and enjoyment?
Some of the
web sites, news and information sources I use are:
Clemens, Monterey Peninsula College
My passion is
teaching and positively affecting students’ lives. I devised
a literature/film class that engages some of the issues of human
destiny (and human definition) in terms of the way Hollywood has
depicted them (such as Blade Runner, 2001, Gattaca).
The next 30 years are filled with conflicting potential—I
would like to see the human race focused on exploring the universe
but I realize we could also become omphaloskeptics, cowed by indifference
of cosmic nature.
risk is continuing erosion of human dignity from further redefinition
of when and what a human being is—that is, technology proceeds
blindly providing expanding opportunities for control and supposed
perfectability. I would not want to live in the world of Gattaca,
and I hope that sensitizing students to such a possible future will
cause them to seek humanizing avenues for change rather than “inhumanizing”
Finally, I think
that to be human involves encountering and coming to terms with
mortality. In 30 years I expect to be dead, but, as Heinlein’s
character says when going into battle, “C’mon you apes!
What do you want to do, live forever?”
Primarily educational—I’m trying to
put my “robot class” online even though I find online
education a shadow of real education. As Martin Pawley once said,
all technology acts as insulation against human contact. Futurist
issues need to be more infused into the schools so that students
have some sort of mental construct about the potentials inherent
in the developments around them. Most students have no image of
the future at all, or the past either, for that matter; they are
ahistorical and cocooned . What sort of government eventuates from
the ahistorical and cocooned?
(http://www.angelfire.com/realm2/singularity) I am affiliated with
the Association of Literary Scholars and Critics, the National Association
of Scholars, and the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education.
K. Davis, Independent Contractor
I am fascinated
by all emerging technologies. This is manifested in the gadgets
I use, the ways that I spend most of my time, the products and services
that I offer and the spiritual calling I pursue.
The world will
be radically different in 30 years. New technologies will continue
to emerge at an accelerating pace. Dangers and benefits will expand.
Our priority should be to move quickly toward the future with transparency,
distributed systems of security and control, and compassion for
My mission is
to assist people to cope with accelerating change. Over the past
year this has meant offering Scopeware (a simple, elegant knowledge
management system) to business customers. I want to embellish my
technology advocacy by adding new products and services to my portfolio.
Visit my blog
at http://johnkdavis.net to
learn more about Scopeware and the many interests I have concerning
Frazier, Principal, Cognovis Group, LLC
I am fascinated
by the growth of ubiquitous connectivity and its impact on society,
groups, and individuals. I believe the greatest challenges of the
next 30 years are human rather than technological. We will be living
longer and must have new ways to be productive and add value to
society. The greatest risk is that our technology outstrips our
ability to deal with it -- that we fail to address the massive shifts
in culture, politics, and economics that will accompany the science.
To the best of our ability we must understand what technology will
bring, and then we must focus on preparing our society to make best
use of it.
For the past
20 years I have been involved in the creation, distribution, and
management of information products. Today I work in three areas
where accelerated change is needed to survive and prosper.
Publishing - I work with executives in both these industrial-age
industries to help them develop strategies for survival. From newspapers
to magazines to the music industry -- change is slow despite the
We're beginning to understand that when a whole society must be
retrained in perpetuity it cannot be done with traditional educational
methods or institutions, but that e-learning is far more than just
e-books for text and a web browser. Much more experimentation, recombination,
and innovation is needed to find the best blend of on-line, off-line,
and traditional learning.
- Mastering the information flows within a company -- from customers,
employees, competitors, and vendors -- is the fastest way to know
what's happening before it happens. Ubiquitous connectivity combined
with emerging, grass-roots publishing technologies is bringing this
closer than ever, yet few companies are taking advantage of this
web page is www.terryfrazier.com where I track many of the issues
that affect the projects listed above. I also work with the CRM
Association (http://www.crm-a.org) which is the only non-profit,
user-centered organization aimed at helping businesses improve their
relationships. Resources I use regularly include the A-OK
Network (http://www.kwork.com) for excellent knowledge work
discussion and news, Dave
Pollard (http://blogs.salon.com/0002007/) for insightful business
innovation, Weblogg-ed News
(http://www.weblogg-ed.com/) for educational and e-learning insight,
Oligopoly Watch (http://www.oligopolywatch.com)
for tracking the ever-growing impact of MNCs on our society, and
Dr. Lynn Kiesling
(http://knowledgeproblem.blogspot.com) for economic analysis.
John Geis, Director Center
for Strategy and Technology; Ted Hayles, Deputy Director, CST
As a representative
of the Air University Center for Strategy and Technology, our passion
and mission is to research the strategic implications of emerging
technologies and advise the Air Force leadership on the long-range
impact of technological choices. The Center is already the premier
research institution within the U.S. Air Force, and by some measures,
the U.S. government, on strategy and technology related issues.
The Center is funded almost entirely from outside sources. Thirty
years from now it is our hope that the Center will continue to be
a valuable contributor to the national debate on how best to invest
scarce taxpayer dollars to ensure the best possible defense for
the United States and freedom-loving peoples everywhere.
The Center for
Strategy and Technology has a working relationship with Headquarters
Air Force Directorate of Plans and Programs; conducts research supporting
the Air Force Scientific Advisory Board; advises the Commander,
United States Special Operations Command on future technologies;
and occasionally conducts studies for the Defense Advanced Research
Projects Agency. The Center is currently involved in the design
of new wargame simulations which the Air Force will use to model
various future force structures to determine the optimum mix of
new systems to achieve the best value for the taxpayer dollar. The
Center teaches courses at the Air War College and Air Command and
Staff College in emerging technologies and their
consequences. To these ends, we have an ongoing need to understand
technology trends and future ramifications and to cultivate relationships
with others who study these issues.
for Strategy and Technology web page is accessible to the general
public, where many of our publications are available for free download.
The web site address is: http://www.au.af.mil/au/awc/awcgate/awccsat.htm
Malo Girod de l'Ain
What fascinates me most are 2 things:
-- the low level of general awareness regarding the ineluctable
acceleration of change -- the high level of needed implication of
governments and citizens worldwide to cope with the impressive evolutions
I am currently
working on the 2010 Saga, a multi media development including a
book, a novel, a community web site, a film... to analyze and play
with the idea of our evolution towards a more and more virtual world
with our increasing ability to "live" virtually. More
info at: http://www.2010virtual.com/en/saga.shtml
In the course
of my research and writing, I come across new concepts, ideas and
products, some just fun to write about and some real products or
services able to generate very large businesses (one concept alone
has the potential to generate a multi-billion$ industry). I am interested
to discuss with members of the group wanting to participate, team,
invest... in such new developments.
New community site with an open wiki to freely discuss
evolutions to come:
of "Vigilants" (in French only) http://www.clubdesvigilants.com
William Grosso, Author and
I have no idea where I, or the world,
will be in 30 years. I do expect that, unless we develop ways to
augment human intelligence, that the growth of knowledge will, for
all intents and purposes, cease by 2020. By which I mean, the current
fragmentation of knowledge, and the ever-more-microscopic areas
of specialization will have rendered most fields of study completely
without application to the real world (and hence, sterile and pointless).
Therefore, I would assert that the
single most important priority for development is working on devices
that augment human intelligence. From memory and recall aids to
devices that help us learn to ... without these devices, human knowledge
will grind to a halt.
See above. The most interesting thing
we can do right now is figure out how to build software better,
and build better software. In much the same way that "augmenting
intelligence" is the bottleneck for the development of knowledge
and the integration of the sciences, software is the bottleneck
for augmenting intelligence. We need to get to a point where true
experimentation is possible and where ideas can be implemented,
tested, and discarded in a matter of days, not months. Until we
make it easier, and cheaper, to develop software, we're going to
I spend a fair amount of time volunteering
at SD Forum, http://www.sdforum.org,
and running Emerging Technology SIG, http://www.sdforum.org/sigs/emerging.
In my spare time, I also built a fairly nice application to help
people find web pages they've already seen. You can download the
beta for free at http://www.seruku.com.
Past that, I think the web is too fluid
to make it worth mentioning specific sites by name.
Presently, as a professional with nine years of
progressive management experience in the operational areas of Supply
Chain, Manufacturing, Distribution, Procurement and Research and
Development, I’m passionate about simulations and anticipatory
design science for the purpose of improving direction, decisions,
As a digital media artist, new technology and its
capabilities are my raw material in the process of extending technology
to applications other than originally intended and exploring the
impact of that technology. New technology also allows me to mine
the gap between new and antique technology to create something of
Social networking is a core interest of mine. (See
below) One future challenge includes managing the degrees of separation
with the right people while remaining unfound by the rest in an
era of telepresence, nanoswarms, and personal information broadcasting
devices such as the Lovegety service offered in Japan.
I have researched and presented the impact on socio-economic class
of occupational dreams and goals in a capitalist society. Currently,
my digital media work is focused on social networking. The first
project concerns dynamic representational methods for an individual’s
network as it grows from person to person interactions… a
sort of trip map with a trajectory and a past present and future.
Ants leave a decaying pheromone trail. These power structure networks
should also have contact reminders triggered at a certain decay
level. The second project concerns diagramming power structures
of corporations based on social networks rather than organizational
design and structure both similar to the work that Marc Lombardi
does in that it shows the interrelationship of things and similar
to www.theyrule.com but for all individuals in the corporation rather
than just the board members. Thirdly, my mine the gap project includes
combining digital and antique photographic processes to comment
both on the digital and the film worlds.
Websites: http://www.jennifer-henderson.com for resume, exhibits,
a website about the handmade
in the era of the digital.
of books on social networking, technology, science, social culture
and politics see http://www.jennifer-henderson.com/id77.htm
issue on Interface: Software
as Cultural Production: http://switch.sjsu.edu/~switch/nextswitch/switch_engine/front/front.php?o=mp&cat=44&show=
Tom Huffman, Foresight Senior
that brought me here comes through early encounters with Disney's
Tomorrowland visions, books by Wernher von Braun and Willy Ley,
and the 'juvenile' sf novels by Robert A. Heinlein. That trajectory
also led through attempts to build a positive vision of the future
in the very pessimistic days of the 70's; R. Buckminster Fuller
and the late, Dr. Gerard K. O'Neill were major influences here.
I actually started a chapter of the old L-5 Society in Tulsa, OK,
in the late
1970's; I must admit that was a resounding failure. Currently, my
only involvement with the space movement is taking part in the Pro-Space
Foundation's yearly "March Storm" – you can get
more information on March Storm at the www.Pro-Space.org
In 1986, I attended
the International Space Development Conference in Seattle, where
I first heard K. Eric Drexler mention the concept of molecular nanotechnology.
I was hooked – I could easily relate molecular nanotechnology
to my earlier interest in space, and to the Bucky Fuller's inclusive
vision of the future. It also offered the possibility of life extension
– an idea I've liked ever since first hearing about it.
For the past
few years, I've been a Senior Associate of the the Foresight Institute;
I joined because I wanted to take part in the dialogue on the uses
of molecular nanotechnology. I've attended the Foresight Senior
Associate Get-Together where I've taken part in seminars on: Building
dialogue with religion, preventing polarization (between nanotech
advocates and environmentalists), and spreading the benefits of
nanotechnology. That last issue is what concerns me most at present:
I still associate nanotechnology with Bucky Fuller's vision of "Advantaging
all – while disadvantaging none."
Kaplan, CEO, iQ Company
I am actively
researching the subject of Collective Intelligence – the idea
that many minds can be linked over the internet using special software
so that they can function as a group mind.
Along with Vernor
Vinge and others, I believe that in 30 years individual human beings
will no longer be the most intelligent beings on Earth. Instead,
I expect there to be a number of superintelligences – intelligent
networks composed of human minds, AIs, and hybrid bio-mechanical
systems – smarter than any single human. With luck, these
superintelligences may combine in a network of networks resulting
in planetary intelligence.
continually accelerate forever. At some point we will get an S curve
– or perhaps some other more abrupt curve. The only question
Risks and opportunities
will reflect our inner selves. If we seek power and domination,
then we will likely create superintelligences that have these same
values. If we seek to help everyone, then perhaps superintelligences
will take their value cues from us – especially if humans
are part of the superintelligent networks. Basically the risk and
opportunities are the same as with any power tool. You get more
results faster – for good or evil – depending on how
you use the tool.
reflect our inner values, so the first thing is for each of us to
know him or herself and to try to act with good intentions toward
My company consults
on the invention, design, and implementation of Distributed Work
System technology. The value proposition is a 50% cost savings with
high quality and faster cycle time than many businesses get with
their current temporary or contract workforce.
iQ is also conducting
R&D in the area of collective intelligence in general, and in
using collective intelligence to make financial forecasts in particular.
The PredictWallStreet project is one example of a Collective Intelligence
project that is represented at this conference.
I enjoy meeting people who have ideas about the future and the future
iQ company website:
experiment in Collective Intelligence for those interested in the
stock market: http://www.predictwallstreet.com
There is an
international group that has put on conferences on the topic of
the Global Brain. More at: http://pespmc1.vub.ac.be/GBRAIN-L.html
Lewin, MD, CEO, California Medical Association
As a physician
leader and CEO of the California Medical Association, I am interested
in how barriers to already-demonstrated technological innovation
can be reduced to allow improvements in the quality of health care,
particularly in reducing an estimated 100,000 serious or fatal medical
errors annually, and in reducing the estimated 20% of health care
costs that are attributable to paper transactions. But, the true
forefront of health care innovation relates to the frontiers of
life extension, genetics, bionics, nanotechnology, and biotechnology
in general –
we are vitally interested in what to expect in these regards.
We am working
on designing and promoting a consumer-driven health care future
that will allow individuals to work with physicians as partners
in individualizing health care goals and strategies, involving all
of the above technological frontiers. Such a future will likely
be organized around sophisticated decision-support-oriented personal
health records, owned and maintained throughout one's lifetime by
each of us, rather than by our hospitals, physicians, or health
plans. Sophisticated non-invasive annual scans using next-generation
safer scanning technologies, along with concomitant biotechnological
blood chemistry analyses covering many 100s of disease detection
and monitoring factors, may become available in the near future.
Privacy and financing strategies related to such innovation will
be challenging considerations.
CMA has launched
MEDePass, a PKI digital internet ID system for physicians and other
health professionals. Doctors of tomorrow need to have a medical
license, a DEA number, and a spoof-proof digital identity to practice.
MEDePass takes care of the latter newest essential license need...
I'm interested in molecular
nanotechnology, idea futures, uploading, cryonics, life extension,
open source software, anarchocapitalism, and pan critical rationalism.
a stock market speculator. I've worked as a programmer in the past,
and have been part of a nanotech startup (see http://www.molecubotics.com).
My home page:
Miller, Researcher, Demos
been fascinated by the leading edge of science, amazed by the people
and ideas that can repeatedly blow apart our view of the universe
and create a new one in its place. I'm also fascinated by how governance
is changing in an increasingly interconnected world. As a researcher
at Demos I get the chance to explore both.
Over the past couple of years I've been wondering
quite a lot about the role of openness in technological development.
There's the obvious example of open source software development
but can we apply similar principles to the development of government
policy on technology for instance?
putting the final touches to a book on the future of regulation
that proposes a new model of regulating based on principles from
complexity science and systems thinking. It's due out in November.
I'm also working
on a project that will explore new methods of public engagement
in the development of nanotechnology in the UK funded by the UK
Economic and Social Research Council.
co-editing a collection of essays bringing together thinking about
networks from a number of disciplines including sociology, political
science, biology and physics. Contributors will include Fritjof
Howard Rheingold, Mark Buchanan and Larry Lessig. It's due out in
More info about
Demos available at www.demos.co.uk
The Demos weblog is www.demosgreenhouse.co.uk
My personal weblog is www.paulmiller.org
I am specially interested
in the long term future of the human race. Are we capable of becoming
a space faring race? Is our intelligence, embedded in a very slowly
developing biocomputer, capable of accelerating and carry us to
the stars or is our brain so limited that we will be left behind
on earth (and/or die out) while the machine intelligence we created
expands into space after the singularity?
intelligence be benevolent or get out of control? Are we smart enough
to manage spaceflight and machine intelligence? The distances and
vacuum of space is unforgiving: if you make a mistake you are dead.
I want to participate
in discussions related to the above and generally broaden my horizon
speculating on the future of accelerating technologies.
My bio is at:
My latest interest:
Victor J. Stenger:
Where Did the Laws of Physics Come From?
Victor J. Stenger:
Is the Universe Fine-Tuned for Us?
H. Pang, Bio-Imaging Engineer, Aureon Biosciences
and nanotechnology fascinate me the most. The global capitalism
will retreat and an unknown new world order will emerge in the next
30 years. I expect continual acceleration of technology. The risks
are the misuse of nanotechnology and the mass unemployment due to
the acceleration of technology and the opportunities are in the
synergy of nanotechnology, biotechnology, and information technology
and in the commercialization and the colonization of space. Nanotechnology
and quantum computing should be our development priorities because
they will enable the advancement of other technologies.
I would like
to work on the software tools for nanotechnology and quantum computing.
Areas of collaborative opportunity are quantum computing, nanotechnology,
and business. I want to discuss the impact of accelerating change
on entrepreneurship, global capitalism, and high skilled labor market
in the group.
I am affiliated
with Optical Society of America, http://www.osa.org,
and Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, http://www.ieee.org.
Pecavar, Thermal/Mechanical Engineer, Sun Microsystems
things, I do package level qualification work on various Sun products.
My interests include: (1) better understanding the path to the "singularity";
(2) development of "conscious" artificial intelligence;
and (3) human enhancement technologies.
An issue that
concerns me greatly is the probability of a catastrophic event occurring
during the coming decades due to error/failure/accident of advancing
technologies. What are some proactive measures we can take to improve
chances of this not happening?
How will advanced
"conscious" artificial intelligence change the way we
feel about what it means to be human? Is it even possible for an
artificial machine to fully relate to human experiences?
Peterson, President, The Arlington Institute
1. I believe
that we are living in an era of global transition, to a degree that
our species has never seen before. The exponential increase of human
knowledge, and the acceleration of its application through technology,
is propelling humanity towards a new era of thought and endeavor.
Society, science, ecology and commerce are converging at the intersection
of danger and opportunity. A complexity and unpredictability that
is beyond our past experience characterize the challenges at hand.
If humanity's preferred future is to be realized, new tools for
strategic planning and problem solving must be invented and combined.
We must think differently.
At The Arlington Institute,
it is our priority to facilitate this transition, and to connect
and associate with like-minded people so that we may together embrace
the opportunities of this future.
2. Existing Project:
The Arlington Institute’s Large Integrated Search and Analysis
(LISA) tool is an information collection, storage, extraction, and
analysis capability for tracking global trends that we believe is
unequalled outside of the intelligence community. It brings together
a variety of innovative components to provide an "information
and knowledge engine" that can globally track emerging ideas
around any selected topic from thousands of sources.
Potential Project: The
River to the Future is a breakthrough visualization system that
allows analysts and futurists, in real time, to assess the significance
of ongoing incidents in relation to the wider global system. It
also allows the analysts to create and consider, through a database
of scenarios, a wide variety of futures that may arise from these
Potential Project: The
Arlington Institute and the Global Future Forum will host the Zero
Harm Technology Conference in April of 2004 in Washington DC. With
world-renowned speakers, this conference will explore – at
a systems level – the positive, negative and interconnected
impacts of rapid technological change so that solutions can be forged
which do not further exacerbate conditions for humanity and the
planet, even as they attempt to ameliorate them.
The Arlington Institute – www.arlingtoninstitute.org.
alliances and networks: Mr. Petersen is a network member of the
Global Business Network and a number of other professional and interest
J. Rothfuss, Vice President, Business Development, KAYWA Ltd.
I am interested especially
in nanotechnology and artificial intelligence. I expect the rate
of change to increase in the next 30 years as various previously
unconnected technologies begin to interesect. I hope that the world
will see the first pre-singularity technologies being put to use
within 30 years, and hope that I can be a part of the ride by learning
and teaching about these changes. The risks and opportunities have
been written up cogently elsewhere, let me add that I consider the
creation of friendly AI to be key.
One of the
biggest problems facing us today is for society to adapt to change.
The collective intelligence of society has to grow much quicker
than it does today to tackle the complex problems of today and the
future. I hope that social software and weblogs can be a first step
in that direction. I design and promote weblog software.
Personal web page, if
any. Groups you are affiliated with or promote. Web community and
other info sources you use and recommend (e.g., sites you regularly
read/participate in, news sources, magazines, tools, techniques,
courses, other "conversations" you value).
O. Samuel, CEO, Invent Corporation
I am fascinated
by the PC, the Internet, and nanotechnology.
The PC was born
in 1981 when IBM introduced it's first personal computer. Since
then, humanity has never been, and will never be, the same. The
pathway into the known and unknown world was paved. Today, PCs are
not really personal. Tomorrow, they will be so profoundly personal
that they'll be in everything and everywhere, yet will appear to
disappear as they become embedded in everything from our clothing
and eyeglasses to our bodies and brains. "Wearable" PCs
will soon become common place.
is still at it's infancy and will metamorphize soon. We're just
a short while away from the 'big bang,' the Evernet, the
always-on, high-speed, ubiquitous, mutiformat Web. When this occurs,
downloading a 100GB high speed motion picture movie will be like
changing a channel from your remote control. How long does that
keeps me in awe when I ponder over it. The part that makes me dread
is the impact of molecular electronics: the science of manipulating
matter at the atomic level. Around 2030, we will be building machines
that are a million times more powerful than today's PCs.
The mere thought
of where the world will be in the next 30 years is enough to make
most reasonable people feel as though their heads might explode.
Where we will be is going to shake the very foundations of our faiths
and beliefs. In the next 30 years, everything about us will have
changed from the way we think to the way we compute. We will have
more power and ability to enhance our living style, comfort, safety,
and environmental friendliness. There will be continuous acceleration.
Computing power will ignite extraordinary revolutions that will
transform our world and make all of this possible…for better
or worse. The risks are as great as the opportunities, but we're
curtailed not to pursue a particular kind of knowledge.
I suggest ASF
should work on the Human Genome Project. It involves proteomics,
cloning, and developmental biology. This is one area that can never
be ignored. The other area is distributed clean power, transportation,
and water for the tens of millions of people globally who live on
less than a dollar a day. I believe that each of these sets of technologies
could be as important as the Net and maybe more profitable.
Right now, I'm
working on two core projects: Mobile Electricity and BioMode.
This is aimed at solving the pressing problem of every mobile device.
According to The Global Mobile Commerce Forum, the mobile device
has become the era's defining personal technology. Mobile technology
is bringing about fundamental changes in how we do business, and
even in how we live.
Silicon Valley, Wireless mobile access to the Internet is expected
to exceed access from fixed PCs by 2004. But all this may fail without
an always-on mobile device. This is a great problem chip makers
are facing because as they put more and more transistors down and
flip them at higher frequencies, they dissipate more and more power,
which means that PCs running with a P4 will exhaust their power
faster than PCs running a P3. My device uses almost less then one
tenth lithium ion battery than a normal laptop battery, so environmental
risk and emission is minimal. I still need to seek expert advice
to perfect it, and believe ACC2003 is a great opportunity for me
to do that.
is aimed at making e-commerce easier. BioMode is a fingerprint device,
like a mouse for verification and authentication. I would prefer
to not go into this further because the principle behind it is simple,
unlike any other fingerprint device.
that I want to discuss with the group: I have a strong interest
in discussing nanotechnology and Artificial Intelligence with attendees.
and it's affiliates, http://wfs.org/
and http://www.wired.com/, so
please see their web sites. Right now, my web site is under construction,
but I'll provide the link to ASF as soon as it's up.
As we go into
the world of the inevitable, I pay great tribute to the men and
women who have gone ahead of me, and to the speakers at ACC2003.
See you in Palo Alto.
Sententia, Director, Center for Cognitive Liberty and Ethics
in cognitive technologies & neurochemistry are further accelerating
our ability to manipulate and enhance the brain. In the next few
decades we will see even more intricate breakthroughs in neurotechnologies
& neurochemistry. How will society respond to new options, new
possibilities for treating, improving, or modifying the mind? What
sorts of freedom to benefit from these advances will we have, what
sorts of limitations should/will there be?
Just as environmental
diversity is a requirement for maintaining and fostering a healthy
ecosystem, so too, mental diversity ensures creativity and flourishing
open social systems by encouraging a multiplicity of approaches
to thinking about, and solving, problems.
Today, new drugs
and other technologies developed for augmenting, monitoring, and
manipulating cognition require social policies that will promote,
rather than restrict, free thinking. Applications of these technologies
can benefit from forward-looking principles that ensure cognitive
I am a co-director
of the Center for Cognitive Liberty & Ethics (CCLE), a nonprofit
law and policy institute working to advance sustainable social policies
that protect freedom of thought. I will be happy to meet with fellow
ACC2003 attendees who have a personal interest, professional focus,
or expertise in fields that intersect with cognitive liberty issues.
Here are three
core principles the CCLE team works to ensure:
What and how you think should be private unless you choose to
share it. The use of technologies such as brain imaging and scanning
must remain consensual and any information so revealed should
remain confidential. The right to privacy must be found to encompass
the inner domain of thought.
Self-determination over one's own cognition is central to free
will. School boards, for example, should not be permitted to condition
a child's right to public education on taking a psychoactive drug
such as Ritalin. Decisions concerning whether or how to change
a person's thought processes must remain the province of the individual
as opposed to government or industry.
The capabilities of the human mind should not be limited. So long
as people do not directly harm others, governments should not
criminally prohibit cognitive enhancement or the occasioning of
any mental state.
For more information,
or to participate and support the CCLE's work, visit: Center for
Cognitive Liberty & Ethics, http://www.cognitiveliberty.org.
To receive "Top Cognitive Liberty News" e-mails, sign-up
"Brain Waves" is an informative and thoughtful column
on emerging neurotechnologies and their social implications: http://www.corante.com/brainwaves
d'Souza, Student, University of Waterloo
I am most enthralled with include quantum physics, linguistics,
machine learning, and genetic engineering.
from now, I foresee widespread use of quantum computers that can
pick up new abilities by observing them in practice. These machines
will be able to hold conversations with human beings with sufficient
fluency to pass the Turing test.
Barring some major international
disaster that sets us all back technologically or culturally, I
expect the pace of change to continue accelerating for the next
The main risk
is that we might do something stupid and dangerous in the quest
for short-term gain and that this will destroy our lives.
Offsetting this is the
opportunity to create a new generation of machines that will be
able to do for modern society what the slaves did for the ancient
Greeks, thereby enabling us to focus on higher pursuits like philosophy.
priorities should be to encourage the public understanding of the
technologies that we use so much on an everyday basis.
been thinking about a lot recently is the creation of a genetically
programmed neural net that can learn how to make sense of human
vocal utterences using fuzzy pattern recognition. Because humans
do not learn through auditory input alone, a way of simulating multiple
physical senses will need to be developed. The machine will need
to interact with a wide variety of people to provide it with a useful
range of input data. However, any results from such a project are
likely to prove invaluable to automatic translation services.
Steele, ASF Supporter
of artificial intelligence. What will be the legal status and responsibilities
of AI's as they emerge, and how do we demarcate their passage from
"childhood" to "adult" legal status? How do
we motivate and enforce responsible behavior in AI's?
a science fiction novel involving AI and singularity issues. Currently
participating socially with ASF members and looking for a more productive
involvement with this community. Wondering how to apply my professional
skills (predominantly writing/editing/copywriting/web-content/usability)
to help advance the cause. I would welcome opportunities to consult
in these areas.
I'm a newcomer
to these disciplines, so I think I have more to learn than to offer
in this area.
Theiler, Director Consultant, Futurity Fitness
As I am writing
the script for a Documentary on Women in Accelerated Change I would
be very interested to talk and perhaps video some conversations
with people on their views on this topic. Personally, I have a fascination
with the leaky body' concept in feminist philosophy and its relation
to matters trans-human. There seem to be some fascinating links
to be made.
I am also passionate
about new ways of thinking in an era of Accelerated Change. I have
a longstanding admiration for Gilles Deleuze, a continental French
Philosopher, and his take on thinking that is beyond signification
and representation. I think his philosophy has a lot to offer in
a world of accelerating change.
I am also fascinated
with the window of opportunity that a singularity may present us.
I feel this could be the moment to be ready with a whole new set
of tools based on new principles for a much more egalitarian and
enjoyable life for all.
I am currently
setting up an organization in Australia that attempts to bring together
Accelerating-, Changing- and Trans-Humans in Australia, New Zealand
and the Pacific and beyond. We hope to set up a conference/gathering
in Australia for the Pacific and beyond making an opportunity for
all accelerated and trans-human folk to meet regionally. Please
contact me if you are interested: Theiler@bipond.com.
I am looking for funding
to make a film on Women and Accelerated Change.
I am writing
a Phd/book on Women, Singularity and Change.
I have set up
an organization called FUTURITY FITNESS, http://www.futurityfitness.com,
that aims to be a psychological resource for people in accelerated
change and transiting to post-human stages of development. Sooner
or later I will have to make a living from this work. I am very
keen to talk and share with other psychologists developing their
expertise in matters future, change and the trans-human. Please
contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Valikangas, Managing Director, Woodside Institute
is managing director at the Woodside Institute. Previously, she
was the director of research at Strategos, a management consulting
company. A researcher and consultant for the past 15 years, she
has explored world competitiveness at IMD in Switzerland, leadership
and organizational change at Keio Business School in Japan, organizational
learning at Stanford University, and innovation and knowledge management
at SRI Consulting in the U.S. She has published widely in the areas
of strategic management and organization design and consulted for
many of the leading companies in the United States, Europe, and
Asia. Dr. Valikangas is also a cofounder of a research project on
regional and organizational knowledge networks at Stanford University
and a member of the editorial board of the Journal of Knowledge
Management. The Strategic Management Society recently awarded her
a prize for integrating theory and practice. She holds a PhD in
business administration from Tampere University in Finland.
van Stelle, Ph.D. Student, Stanford University
interested in social networks, networks of organizations, etc. –
I’ve been inspired by Mark Granovetter, Duncan Watts, and
others. My current work (more on this below) involves trying to
understand the changes network structures go through during economic
crises – and how networks of organizations can best weather
fascinated by team dynamics – my partner is a team-building
trainer who uses team-based treasure hunts as the vehicle for lessons
about organizational dynamics, collaboration, innovation, you-name-it.
I enjoy helping him organize the treasure hunts and then sitting
back and watching what happens… :)
about cutting-edge biotechnology and nanotechnology; I love speculative
(science) fiction that goes into detail about possible near-future
technologies and their uses (more on this below).
I think that
while the development of technology may continue to accelerate,
it will take a serious shift in global culture – a transformation
of the way we deal with (accept/use) technology – in order
for such technology to be introduced effectively at anywhere near
the rate at which it is/will be developed. So I think that one of
our priorities should be to work towards a more technologically
educated global population. Greater openness to new technologies
will (arguably) only come when they are not such a mystery to the
average world citizen.
My current (dissertation)
project involves understanding the venture capital industry’s
evolution over the course of the past 30 years, particularly the
impact of economic crises on this industry’s network structures,
patterns of investment, and economic performance. I’m taken
with applying the concept of robustness, or resilience, to network
structure and seeing what bearing it might have on networks’
survival/success in such crises. I’m also interested in understanding
how and why regional differences in network structures exist.
I’m working on a study of the evolution of managerial control
systems in high tech organizations. We are hoping to identify the
best practices in each phase of the organizational life cycle, in
an effort to provide entrepreneurs with a better blueprint for organizational
My two research
My partner owns
the team-building training company that I referred to earlier: http://www.drclue.com.
His experiential programs draw participants’ attention to
facilitating innovation, cross-team collaboration, and improved
communication in their organizations.
Duncan Watts’ 2003 book on networks, entitled Six Degrees,
extremely interesting and think it would be useful to network novices
and experts alike. Additionally, I suggest that anyone interested
in multidisciplinary collaboration in the various sciences (physical/
biological/ social/ computing) visit the Santa Fe Institute’s
web site: http://www.santafe.edu.
On the lighter
side, in the realm of speculative (science) fiction I highly recommend
Neal Stephenson’s work (particularly The Diamond Age
with respect to nanotechnology, and Cryptonomicon with
respect to encryption and privacy issues). I also recommend Donnerjack
by Jane Lindskold and the late Roger Zelazny, for a (somewhat) fanciful
look at virtual reality. Enjoy!
Voss, Founder, Adaptive AI Inc.
include: Artificial General Intelligence (AGI), philosophy, ethics,
futurism, technology, and psychology. All indications are that in
less than 10 years we'll hit the singularity, and who knows what
things will be like... AGI is the key – it will happen before
full-blown nanotech, bioengineering, or radical life-extension –
it will make these other advances possible.
(a2i2) is building an AGI system: http://adaptiveai.com/.
We are always looking for additional team members & collaborators.
Our AGI engine
is based on a specific theoretical model of high-level intelligence
developed over the past decade. Our immediate goal is the creation
of a fully functional, proof-of-concept prototype of all the foundational
elements of General Intelligence.
have seven full-time members on our team, who in a short period
of time have created a significant framework of core functionality
and tools for our AGI engine. For more information about a2i2, see
Vyff, Nutritional Student, LR Society
Other than mapping
out where the Earth will be in 4 dimensional space in 30 years,
I'm going to wish that society and technology has grown as my neural
map, life experiences, ideas of morality can now portend. The emergence
of cyber beings, the world's economy switched from the 548 billion
now spent by the U.S. and Allies on Military Spending -- when 31
billion is spent on education here in America and a mere 13 billion
would provide food for the world's poor -- to something more rational,
with the balance and bulk of resources going towards science...
our ever lasting, since we became aware of our existence, quest
for the meaning of it all.
An issue for me is education/awareness.
To learn about our world, to understand others, to share the need
and knowledge with others.
I read New
Scientist for its weekly digest of new science, Mother
Jones for investigative reporting, Discover, Nutrition
Action Health Newsletter, Harvard Health News Letter,
University of CA Berkley Health Newsletter, Scientific America,
Discover, Newsweek, Mothering magazine, New Beginnings
(the La Leche League publication) I am a member of the CR society
(calorie restriction with optimal nutrition) I read those digests
on-line and those of the cryonics group. I am planning on being
cryogenically frozen when I de-aminate.
Watson, Software QA Engineer
fascinate you most?
Space travel and colonization. The meeting of virtual reality, artificial
intelligence, and psychology (for example, as they could be applied
for rehabilitation of criminals or for reacclimatization of reanimated
cryonics patients). Biomedical technology (neural regeneration and
the world, and you, be in the next 30 years? Most of the world,
particularly the third world, may be held to approximately its present
state by political inertia and the slow diffusion of ideas across
linguistic, cultural, and ideological boundaries. For those in developed
countries, death from aging and disease will be greatly reduced,
as will unplanned procreation. Other than that, I really don't know,
which is part of the point.
Do you expect continual
acceleration of technology? Yes, although I don't know what
that will look like.
the risks and opportunities? Risks include that technology
will be used for violence and destruction, or that it will push
humans out of their accustomed niches without giving them time to
adapt to new ones. Opportunities include that it will be used to
free up the creative energy of billions who are currently unable
to use it effectively due to poverty and disease.
be our development priorities? A general priority, not connected
to any particular technology, should be safety. Many technologies
are in the works or on the horizon that have the potential to get
out of control, or to be purposely developed and used, to the detriment
of millions or even billions.
in AI-assisted psychology and education. Think The Diamond Age:
or, A Young Lady's Illustrated Primer. I have long thought
that grades (in both senses) should be done away with in schools;
now I think that schools themselves (as we have come to know them)
should be done away with. I'd like to hear others' views of how
those brought up in the 20th century will deal with an economy turned
topsy-turvy by coming developments, and how our social structure
will integrate people who live much longer and healthier life spans.
Will people retire much later? Much earlier? Not at all? Will they
even have to (or be able to) work as we know it?
Groups you are affiliated with or promote:
Foresight Institute, Alcor Life Extension Foundation, Extropy Institute,
Libertarian Party. Other info sources you use and recommend:
The only one that comes immediately to mind at 5 AM is http://www.feelinggood.com,
particularly the Tutorials section.
James Wilsdon, Head of Strategy, Demos
I work as head
of strategy at Demos, one of the UK's leading nonprofit think tanks.
Over the past decade, the relationship between technology, society
and public policy has been a central focus of our work. Demos is
strongly pro-innovation, but our research tries to help policymakers
navigate the complex webs of economic, social and environmental
risks and opportunities that new technologies create. Issues of
accountability and governance are particularly important to us.
For any new technology, we tend to ask questions about whose technology
it is, whom it would benefit, who bears the risks, what purposes
are driving R&D, and how it might change our society.
We have several
projects underway that relate to the themes of the Accelerating
a) New technologies
and progressive governance - Demos led the research and policy input
for the technology strand of this year's Progressive Governance
Summit, hosted by Tony Blair in London in July 2003 (http://www.progressive-governance.net).
The summit, which was attended by a dozen world leaders and around
400 policy experts, was based around seven themes, one of which
was emerging technologies, risk and the environment. Our paper -
"From Bio to Nano and beyond" - was debated by ministers
from the UK, Germany, Sweden and South Africa.
and sustainability - We have recently embarked on a two-year study
of the social and environmental implications of nanotechnology,
with the aim of moving the site of public debate and dialogue on
these issues further upstream within R&D processes. This work
is funded by the UK's Economic and Social Research Council, and
is being carried out in partnership with Lancaster University's
Institute for the Environment, Philosophy and Public Policy.
c) Open source
democracy - In October, we will be publishing a pamphlet by Douglas
on the lessons that progressive politics can draw from the open
source movement. This is the latest in a series of Demos reports
on the ways that open source models of innovation can help to transform
politics and the delivery of public services.
I am currently
most interested in learning about potentially world changing technologies,
such as superhuman intelligence (either computers or human augmentation),
nanotechnology, and biotechnology. I am also interested in the sociology
of technology development, international military relations, and
the politics of technology, war, and freedom.
I don't know where things
will be in 30 years. I do expect technology to keep accelerating.
Risks and opportunities are too many to mention. Development priorities
for me would be inevitable technologies with dramatic effect or
top project is learning potentially dramatic technologies and keeping
up on them. Methods for tracking technology are interesting to me.
Current health and productivity is also a big interest for me -
teaching and applying what is known, stimulating interest. My main
focus for now is learning and teaching (mostly by writing) technology
and ways to avoid death. Technology with high, near-term profit
potential and long term value is also interesting to me.
I like Foresight
Institute. I generally hang out with a life extension, future oriented
crowd but I have few novel recommendations. I have a good knowledge
of general life extension topics.
Annissimov, Volunteer, Singularity Institute for Artificial Intelligence
Given the continuous
improvement of computing power and cognitive science knowledge across
the world, I believe it’s only a matter of time before we
flesh out the essential algorithms of intelligence, instantiate
them on a silicon substrate, and watch those algorithms conduct
improvements to themselves at milions or billions of times the human
rate. When this novel form of intelligence gains the ability to
conduct architectural, recursive improvements to itself –
obtaining built-to-order proteins from a custom synthesis lab, and
using those proteins to bootstrap Drexlerian assemblers –
then we have every reason to expect that intelligence will go “FOOM”
(what some have called a “hard takeoff”). The possibility
of this event occuring in the next couple of decades makes it incredibly
important that the top-level goal of a nascent general AI be complex
enough to value life, and help other entities in the ways they want
to be helped. Some call this top-level goal “Friendliness”,
and the thinking behind it "Friendliness research".
in the transhumanist community by volunteering for the ASF and the
Singularity Institute. I’d be happy to explain the Singularity
Institute’s work to the best of my ability to anyone who is
interested. I co-direct the Immortality Institute, a nonprofit organization
to spreading information regarding extreme life extension. My goal
for the remainder of this year is to get a strong San Francisco
Bay Area Transhumanists organization going. I’m interested
in all topics related to accelerating change.
I am fascinated
by the human brain, the organ of our consciousness, emotions, subjective
experience and identity. I am fascinated by computers, the fast
evolving artificial brains which will soon become sentient and surpass
their nature-made counterparts. I am fascinated by
the symbiotic relationship that these two brains have already begun
to develop. I eagerly, boldly, curiously, and excitedly look ahead
to the merging of human brains with computers. I want to augment
my intelligence and expand my consciousness. I want to create worlds
and visit the worlds that others have created. I want to explore
the unimaginable and imagine the
unexplored. I stride forward toward the Singularity at full speed
and without hesitation, because for many people the singularity
may come too late. Death takes it's toll every day; Extropy succumbs
to Entropy, ashes to ashes, dust to dust. However, I must do everything
within my power to ensure that nobody is left behind. For this I
must increase awareness and education about the accelerating progress
of technology. Many, many people have are unaware that their entire
world is drastically changing right before their eyes. We must increase
awareness, so that as a society, we will all be prepared.
One of the great
things that will come from the increasing knowledge of the workings
of the human brain and the accelerating progress of technology is
the ability to use technology to monitor and influence the human
brain's functions. In the near future, when technologies such as
portable PET (Positron Emission Tomography) scanners become available,
we will be able to monitor our brain function in great detail and
in real time, without having to go to a hospital or enter a large
chamber. This technology, in conjunction with biofeedback techniques,
will allow a
person to exert conscious control over many brain functions which
are at present controlled unconsciously. These functions includes
alertness, attention, time perception, and pain sensation, to name
a few. It is interesting to note that some people can achieve some
level of control over these functions through meditation, however,
biofeedback techniques will allow people to achieve this control
in a much shorter time and with much less effort. We do not yet
have portable PET scanners. However, another method of using technology
to monitor brain function exists: EEG (Electroencephalogram) Biofeedback.
EEG biofeedback uses electrodes
placed on the scalp to monitor brainwaves. Different brainwave frequencies
are associated with different states of consciousness and attention.
With EEG biofeedback, one can train oneself to consciously control
many aspects of their brain function. I am currently involved in
the OpenEEG project (http://www.OpenEEG.org),
an open source project which makes it possible for a layperson such
as myself to build an EEG biofeedback machine from scratch. Professional
Biofeedback machines and professional biofeedback therapy are at
present prohibitively expensive (thousands of dollars), especially
for college students. However, the OpenEEG project makes it possible
to get an EEG machine up an running for around $200. You can find
my own "Project Beta Wave" EEG Biofeedback project at
I am a member
of LA Futurist Reading Group:
helped set up our first Accelerating Change BBS. Look for me, my
is Nebson. http://www.accelerating.org/bbs/
Page: "Operation Beta Wave" http://www.csulb.edu/~bbush
OpenEEG project: http://www.OpenEEG.org
SingularityWatch.com, KurzweilAI.net, Transhumanism.com (World Transhumanist
Association), SingInst.org (Singularity Institute), Extropy.org
(Extropy Institute), for the latest news, discussions, and social
implications of technological breakthroughs and accelerating
on the internet is a growing trend that is quickly allowing people
to meet other people with similar interests, organize themselves
in mass, have important discussions, and form business partners.
I currently use and recommend four such personal networking
The latest Scientific
American issue (September 2003) is a special issue titled "Better
Brains." It includes lots of wonderful, surprising information
on the latest trends and discoveries in Neuroscience. I highly recommend
it to everyone.
C. Hill, Co-Director of the Institute for Applied Creativity, Texas
My first exposure
to the future was in 1968 when I and another graduate student were
hired to teach the first undergraduate course in Futures at UC Berkeley.
Since that time I have incorporated creativity and future studies
into my courses.
my always changing creativity/futures class have to produce knowledge
rather than reproduce knowledge. They sign a non-disclosure statement
to get into the class and are expected to create hybrids for the
the currency of the new Millennium and the ability to produce knowledge
will accelerate. I worry that most university curriculums deal with
the past and present and rarely, if ever, explore the future. Since
a third of the jobs that will be available in ten years have not
been invented yet, universities should be more open to experimental
curriculums that deal with fields of the future. If Intellectual
Property is the coin of the realm, can we avoid a depression in
I wonder about the recent developments of extending life to 120+
years when the earth is reaching it's limit on food and water supplies.
Who decides which life is extended?
When the time
comes that birth defects and diseases can be corrected in the womb,
can insurance companies deny insurance to the non participants?
Can your DNA limit your job possibilities when you have a questionable
Will we be a
totally transparent society at the hands of Homeland Security? Who
will control who?
Over the next
thirty years my interest will be captured primarily by the advances
in neuroscience, and more importantly, the integration of those
advances into our society, economy, and our bodies.
While I differ
with some 'Singularitarians' on inevitability of accelerating change,
I do expect it. The changes occurring over the next 30 years do
pose some risks, but we have been on the same technological curve
for centuries now and we can expect a continuation of the same ratio
of risks to opportunities. My feeling, and one shared by many, is
our world is better than it was a hundred/two hundred/et cetera
years ago. The future is likely to hold in this phenomenon, there
will be drawbacks, but they are very likely to be heavily outweighed
by the improvements.
priorities should be in nanotech. Every advance in nanotech will
result in numerous advances in AI, neuroscience, computing and so
to the standard technological advances I am interested in the human
issues surrounding accelerating change. Currently I am working on
projects dealing with death in the face of accelerating change.
sophistication is leading to a blurring of the once fine line surrounding
death. Society is grappling with death, arguing over persistent
vegetative states and abortion. I am currently involved with two
projects involving death and accelerating change. I am an assistant
researcher for the Alcor Life Extension Foundation, a cryonics organization.
I am working to help people who want to fully experience the benefits
of accelerating technological change. I am also working with Arizona
Death with Dignity organization, helping create a packet of information
for families and patients struggling with decisions surrounding
death. Technology is progressing faster than many people realize,
and the dying are faced with complex and difficult decisions regarding
In two years
I will be leaving Alcor and going to medical school or graduate
school (in neuroscience). I am currently in the process of exploring
how I want to contribute to our society in the future. On one hand
I am drawn towards focusing on human interests, helping individuals
integrate technology into opportunities. On the other hand I want
to directly contribute to scientific knowledge.
The LA Futurists
group was an important resource to me over the last few years. Since
I moved away from LA I have become fond of betterhumans.com.
For more general information regarding technological progress I
rely on Slashdot and other news feeds.
every other important aspect of human existence, is rapidly changing
in the face of technological development. I cannot recommend specific
communities, because I have assembled a distributed community across
thousands of miles using a hodgepodge of technological devices.
What I am currently using to maintain my community: friendster.com,
livejournal.com, AIM, cell phone, e mail, and soon my website www.vim-vigor.net.
For real time interaction we meet at events such as Burning Man,
LA Futurists, and the Accelerating Change Conference.
Welton, Senior Research Analyst, C J Corp
passion is to find the fulcrum where humanism, journalism, law and
science converge. My background is anthropology; my day job is spent
reading and researching journal and mass communication; my hobbies
at night are Nichiren Buddhism and peace studies. The next 30 years
is happening now. We need to create and live by an entirely new
set of ethics. If we are already cloning pets, what next?
is my quest to discover the global baseline; in other words, what
parts of which cultures are going to be the standard/compromise/compendium/benchmark?
Intercultural communication has been and is a given, but what do
we hope to achieve from all the talk? In order to answer these questions,
I have been fortunate to find and volunteer at the Boston Research
Center for the 21st Century (www.brc21.org)
to arrange dialogues among world citizens and intellectuals. I am
also writing a book to be called “Enlightened Democracy.”
Two other organizations
I have found very helpful in answering my questions about the future
are the Toda Peace Institute (www.Toda.org)
and the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation (www.wagingpeace.org)