For shorter foresight articles, see John's G+
posts and blog, Ever
Rising: Why Evolutionary Developmentalism Will Inherit the Future,
World Future Review, Nov 2015. A 21-page article on evolutionary
developmentalism, a deeply clarifying perspective on the interaction
of unpredictable and generative (evolutionary) with predictable
and conservative (developmental) processes in living systems,
the universe and other complex adaptive systems capable of replication.
The hypothesis of evolutionary developmentalism has considerable
evidence to support it, including convergent evolution, and it
helps us see we are not here as random accidents, but that humanity
plays a critical local role in the self-organization of universal
complexity. Science will remain mute on questions of purpose and
destiny for human civilization until this perspective moves from
systems theory to fully accepted science. That may take several
more generations to occur. Meanwhile, you can consider it now
and gain its deep advantages for personal, organizational, and
universal intuition, foresight, and strategy.
of Technological Change," John Smart, 2012. A read ahead
for some of my talks on technological change. A brief statement
of my current thoughts on opportunities, disruptions, and threats
we can expect over the next ten to twenty years in ten key domains
of technological change. Also a list of a few good general interest
books in each domain.
Hypothesis," John Smart, 2011. Author's draft, submitted
for academic publication. An update of my earlier article, Answering
the Fermi Paradox, 2002, exploring the implications of continual
STEM compression (increasing density and efficiency of use of
Space, Time, Energy, and Matter) in universal complexity development.
One model for the long-term future of universal accelerating change.
This model has many implications for technical-economic progress
and sci-tech and public policy, if true.
Television Will Be Revolutionized: The iPad, Internet TV, and
Web 3.0, John Smart, 2010. A 2-page
summary, a 4-page article, Tomorrow's
Interactive Television, The Futurist, Nov-Dec
2010, and the full 48-page
whitepaper, exploring trends and issues related to the emergence
of internet television and Web
3.0 (The Metaverse), and the critical role that open media
standards and activist consumers can play in democratizing and
empowering American society with this technology platform, and
the major political and economic challenges and opportunities
ahead. The next ten years will be a very exciting time for open
source, open standards web media, and will bring continuing creative
destruction to many sectors of big media. See also my 20
minute video, The Television Will Be Revolutionized,
a talk given at TEDx Del Mar, June 2nd, 2010.
Devo Universe? A Framework for Speculations on Cosmic Culture,
John Smart, 2008. In: Cosmos and Culture: Cultural Evolution
in a Cosmic Context, NASA Press, 2009 (V7.1 Aug 2010). A
54-page overview of three increasingly specific and powerful ways
of understanding predictability and unpredictability
in the universe, and the meaning and implications of accelerating
change for human culture: the Informational Physical Universe
(IPU) hypothesis, the Evo Devo Universe (EDU) hypothesis, and
the Developmental Singularity (DS) hypothesis. If you are pressed
for time and want to get right to the weird stuff, just read the
last 27 pages (pages 26-54), beginning with Processes of Universal
Development. Are these valid systems models or unsupportable speculation?
Time will tell.
Roadmap Overview, John Smart, Jamais Cascio, and Jerry Paffendorf,
2007. A 23 page executive overview of 3D web technologies, applications,
markets, and potential social impacts. Includes the following
(Metaverse) technologies: virtual worlds, mirror worlds, augmented
reality, lifelogging and pervasive web video. See also Metaverse
Roadmap Inputs, John Smart (Ed.), 2007. 75-page in-depth survey
of industry conditions, trends, plans, cycles, scenarios, issues,
and problems relevant to the 20-year future of the metaverse,
and Roadmapping: A Collaborative Foresight
Tool for an intro to roadmaps, an often-useful collaborative
View": Dual Monitor Presentations in PowerPoint,"
John Smart, 2006
A brief guide to doing PowerPoint presentations in Dual Monitor
mode, allowing presenters to have readable onscreen notes to accompany
"Curcumin: A Powerful
Brain Protection Supplement," and "A
Basic Brain Protection Plan," John Smart, 2006
A discussion of recent research regarding curcumin, an affordable
and very potent brain protection supplement, and an argument that
anyone interested in a better brain should be on it today. Accompanying
this article is another outlining ten key strategies (six dietary,
four non-dietary) to consider in a modern brain protection plan.
"Driving Toward an Electric
Future: Natural Gas, Nanobatteries, and PHEV's (Next-Generation
Hybrids)," John Smart, 2006
A discussion of trends pushing us toward Plug-in Hybrid Electric
Vehicle networks in coming years. The new nanobatteries (5X greater
cycle duty and rapid filling ability) can allow battery refilling
in 10 minutes using high-amperage chargers at tomorrow's filling
stations, and tomorrow's power grids will be much more decentralized
than today's gasoline stations, supporting even greater city densities.
"A Practical Wearable Computer:
How to Make Your Own Tummy PC," John Smart, 2005, 2006
A how-to guide for those, including writers, who might benefit
from using a practical and affordable wearable computer today.
Highways (UAH) for High Density Cities: Post-2030 Urban Transportation,"
John Smart, 2005
A framework forecast for one important piece of the future of
urban transportation. It relies on the convergence of several
enabling technologies, such as tunnel boring systems, automated
highway systems, and zero emission vehicle systems, and their
superior efficiencies, safety, and public desirability over other
high capacity transportation options, such as aerial systems.
in an Accelerating World: Review of "A Possible Declining
Trend for Worldwide Innovation," Johnathan Heubner, TF&SC
2005," John Smart, 2005
Consideration of the reasons behind the apparent decline in global
innovation that has been independently observed by a small number
of technology scholars in recent decades.
"Human Performance Enhancement
in 2032: A Scenario for Military Planners," John Smart,
A scenario proposing mild biotechnology and powerful information
technology developments in the coming generation, and an introduction
to the concept of the valuecosm and basic implications for security
"What I Believe But
Cannot Prove: Speculations on Evolutionary Development and the
Cosmic Purpose of Accelerating Change,"John Smart, 2004
1,000 word precis of the developmental singularity hypothesis,
one paradigm for accelerating universal change.
Political-Economic Pendulum: The United States Example"
Activism: Youth Education in the Plutocratic and Unilateral United
States of the Early 21st Century," John Smart,
Creatively in Turbulent Times, Howard Didsbury,
Ed., 2004. The first article makes the case that the degree of
centralization seen in political and economic systems follows
a simple pendular dynamic, and that our recent twenty five year
history of increasing political and economic plutocracy in U.S.
society must swing back toward greater democracy when environmental
conditions are ready, as has clearly occurred at least four previous
times in U.S. history. The second article suggests general strategies
for parents to improve youth education in the present environment.
the Singularity: A Coming World of Autonomous Intelligence,"
John Smart, from 21st
Century Opportunities and Challenges, Howard Didsbury,
A brief introductory explanation of the implication of accelerating
trends in computer autonomy and intelligence.
the Fermi Paradox: Exploring the Mechanisms of Universal Transcension,"
John Smart, from Journal of Evolution and Technology,
Technological Singularity," Vernor Vinge, 1993
The classic article that, in conjunction with the birth of the
world wide web, renewed discussion of accelerating technological
change in the world community.
Possible Cure for Death," Charles B. Olson, 1988
The classic article that makes the first detailed argument that
very inexpensive and validated preservation
of every individual's memories, identity, and mind may soon be
possible with simple chemopreservation (chemical fixation) at
biological death. Inspired ASF's involvement with the founding
of the Brain Preservation
Foundation in 2010, which exists to advance this noble idea
and bring this humanizing, life-affirming, and violence-reducing
technology to all of humanity as soon as possible.
Guide, ForesightGuide.com, 2016. (500 pages,
free online in a page-commentable book-blog form). A 14-chapter
overview of general futures thinking and professsional foresight
practice. Covers the domains of universal, personal, global, and
organizational foresight, across the STEEPS foresight categories.
Includes models, methods, practitioner advice, leader lists, and
resources for foresight development, counterfactuals, startup
ideas, and stories of the 21st century. Over time, I hope the
Guide will become a key resource for students, entrepreneurs,
organizational leaders, academics, and lay thinkers interested
in a Big Picture overview of the field of strategic foresight.
The Guide is one of the curricular texts in my new startup,
and Culture: Cultural Evolution in a Cosmic Context,
NASA Press, 2009 (Free book PDF, 612 pages). Edited by Steven
J. Dick and Mark Lupisella. Contributors are the editors plus
Eric Chaisson, Kathryn Denning, Daniel Dennett, Howard Bloom,
Susan Blackmore, James Gardner, Paul Davies, Seth Shostak,, Doug
Vakoch, David Christian, JoAnn Palmeri, and myself. I contributed
Chapter 6, Evo
Devo Universe? A Framework for Speculations on Cosmic Culture,
John Smart, 2008 (Free article PDF, 54 pages). An
introduction to three powerful frameworks for understanding predictability
and unpredictability in the universe, and the meaning
and implications of accelerating change for human culture:
the Informational Physical Universe (IPU) hypothesis, the Evo
Devo Universe (EDU) hypothesis, and the Developmental Singularity
(DS) hypothesis. If you are pressed for time and want to get right
to the weird stuff, just read pages 26-54 in the article PDF,
or pages 245-279 in the book PDF, beginning with Processes of
Universal Development. Are these valid systems models or unsupportable
speculation? Time will tell.
3000 Seminar 4 Proceedings, John Smart, Aug
21-23, 2003 (PDF, 350 pages)
The fourth Humanity 3000 event at the Foundation
for the Future. Every few years the Foundation invites a group
of multidisciplinarians to discuss and debate big picture issues
for the long term future of humanity, in three time frames (25
years, and a much more dubious 250 years and 1,000 years). Seminar
4 involved Dan Barker, Don Beck, Charlie Brass, Angela Close,
Carl Coon, Peter Corning, Paul Davies, Russell Genet, John Hartung,
Ronald Moore, Adriana Ocampo, Gary Schwartz, Seung-Schik Yoo,
myself, facilitated by Sesh Velamoor, Walter Kistler, Bob Citron,
and other members and observers at the Foundation. I made a case
for the importance, nuances, and challenges of adapting to accelerating