"What if tools of the past no longer fit the economy of the future? Economic growth, as we have known it, is being constrained by an unprecedented slowing of growth in world oil supply. America’s path to future prosperity needs to recognize and confront this new energy reality, and adapt our economy to run on a lot less oil."
Augmentation always requires the individual human brain, the technological extension and the methods, language, and training that support use of the technology, and social communication among populations of individuals. In this extended e-book, I try to situate augmentation in the historical progression of human biological and cultural evolution and project a vision of where it might go in the future. -- Howard
"Mind Amplifier: Can Our Digital Tools Make Us Smarter? examines the origins of digital mind-extending tools, and lays out the foundations for their future. In it, Rheingold proposes an applied, interdisciplinary science of mind amplification. He also unveils a new protocol for developing techno-cognitive-social technologies that embrace empathy, mindfulness, and compassion — elements lacking from existing digital mind-tools."
For the past three or four years media sources in the U.S. trumpeted the “game-changing” new stream of natural gas coming from tight shale deposits produced with the technologies of horizontal drilling and hydrofracturing.
Not all computers are made of silicon. By definition, a computer is anything that processes data, performs calculations, or uses so-called logic gates to turn inputs (for example, 1s and 0s in binary code) into outputs. And now, a small international community of scientists is working to expand the realm of computers to include cells, animals, and other living organisms. Some of their experiments are highly theoretical; others represent the first steps toward usable biological computers. All are attempts to make life perform work now done by chips and circuit boards.
Maker Faire ® season is here. It is all year long, actually. Thousands of people turn out for large and small events around the world that are oriented at inspiring and enabling makers, hackers, inventors, small business owners, and entrepreneurs.
Robin Good: Few people today are aware of how much scientific knowledge is being restricted and not made accessible to everyone, thanks to existing business model and the exorbitant subscription prices that scientific journals and magazines charge to their subscribers.
Since such journals are the key medium through which scientists can get their work published and distributed widely, the least accessible are these journals, the greater the amount of people who will not be able to read what such research documents contain.
Nick Shockey and Jonathan Eisen provide an in-depth explanation of why "open access" in the case of scientific papers is so critical for our future.
Andrew Simms: Cutting household costs is vital, but that can only be part of a much wider approach to how we keep the nation going...
Then there is the climate question. The UK and the EU are committed to a course of action that will prevent temperatures rising by more than 2°C. And the latest science tells us that to meet that we can only afford to burn around one-fifth of the available, and economically recoverable, fossil fuel reserves between today and 2050.
There must be a strong sense of deja-vu in households bewildered by how their energy costs float up against a backdrop of rising international fuel prices but don't seem to float down when they reduce. Several factors explain why. The market is over-concentrated, with too few, too large self-interested energy companies that regulators either cannot or won't regulate in the public interest. Second, it is precisely because Britain has failed aggressively to diversify its energy supply, so that it remains highly vulnerable to changes in the prices of fossil fuels. Equally, the economic opportunity to invest at scale in energy efficiency and the insulation of Britain's old, draughty building stock would more than pay for itself bringing jobs, lower fuel bills, warmer homes in winter and boost the overall economy.
As it is, we suffer an uncompetitive market, with too little diversity of supply and a clean, renewables sector crying out for the investment conditions to expand, which is further hampered by a government too hidebound by economic doctrine to see the one policy – a green new deal – that could solve all these problems. So here is that rare political thing – a win-win situation. It's the sort of thing that great legacies are made of. With so many other problems around, wouldn't any politician want to grab it with both hands?
Ever wondered how to explain the converging crises we face to someone in hurry?
"By the 1980s, electrification and car-buying had reached a point of diminishing returns in the industrialized world. Since then, spectacular new technologies have led to minor rates of economic expansion. This suggests that rapid oil/electricity-based growth was a historic one-off. Will we see more new inventions? Of course. Will they result in a booming economy? Not necessarily."
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