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Help Neal Stephenson Engineer Create a New World of Sci-Fi

Help Neal Stephenson Engineer Create a New World of Sci-Fi | foresighting | Scoop.it

 

Last week Arizona State University’s Center for Science and the Imagination, where I serve as director, officially launched the Hieroglyph Project, an effort to get science fiction writers talking with scientists and engineers about the future.  (Disclosure: Future Tense is a partnership of ASU,Slate, and the New America Foundation). The goal is to break out of our dystopian rut and get some ambitious new ideas on the table, and we need your help to do it.

Sci-fi great Neal Stephenson founded Hieroglyph with the idea that we need more optimistic visions of the future—visions that are still grounded in real science and technology. As Stephenson haspointed out, a good science fiction story can save us from hundreds of hours of meetings and PowerPoint presentations by immediately getting everyone on the same page about a potential breakthrough.

 

This sounds great in theory, but the entertainment landscape is crowded with evidence of what can go wrong when you try to substitute idealism for good storytelling. On the one hand, it would be a terrible mistake to try and impose optimism on every idea. That way lies the Kitchen of the Future, Brook Farm, and some of the creepier episodes of the Twilight Zone. At best, true utopias make for boring and implausible stories.

 

On the other undulating, Cthulhu-esque appendage, your standard-issue dystopia isn’t going to help much either. Survival narratives in the post-apocalyptic ashes like The Road generally reinforce the notion that the details of scientific progress are unimportant since the endgame is inevitable and wretched. The more nuanced genre of Orwellian nightmare scenarios (Children of Men, for example) is a little better, since it reminds us of everything we have to lose, but the moral of these stories usually suggests that no uplifting technology can match the destructive power of human folly.

How can we use Hieroglyph to create convincing stories about a better future, tales with conflict and resolution, with believable characters, with a compelling mixture of hope and irony? Well, while we have set of guidelines for our collaborators, there’s no expectation that every story will have a happy ending. A story where people make mistakes and things don’t work out exactly as planned—that’s pretty much every human story worth hearing. Some of the optimism in Hieroglyph might rely on the simple claim that we can build a better world if we set our minds to it, even if our hero dies or the mistakes along the way are painful ones.

 

Second, we aim to draw a few lessons from the golden age of science fiction without succumbing entirely to that worldview, which at its worst imagines every future problem can be solved by chisel-jawed white guys with engineering degrees wielding the weapons of Science. At their best, stories like “Requiem” by Robert Heinlein, and Isaac Asimov’s “It’s Such a Beautiful Day” were technologically optimistic without sacrificing a credible sense of humanity. The spirit of adventure, of boundless promise, was tempered with human conflicts that illustrated the importance of understanding our tools both technically and culturally.

 

A big part of what gives these stories their frisson, the fresh chill of a new future, is the gap between our world and the fictional universe in question. There’s a kind of intellectual vertigo at play: The author has made some kind of grand imaginative leap and asks us to follow along. What distinguishes Hieroglyph is that we seek to radically extend our idea of what is possible in the present, not a distant future, by drawing on real, cutting-edge research.

And we’re doing it online. Of course we’d really like to invite every writer and researcher involved to spend a few weeks at some serene resort with a well-stocked bar, but then we wouldn’t be able to invite the whole world to participate in these conversations. So instead we built hieroglyph.asu.edu, a site for social collaboration based on WordPress and Commons in a Box, a suite of tools designed for just this kind of work.

 

Hieroglyph is an experiment in mapping out the current field of human potential—stuff we could do if we just set our minds to it, but that is so alien to conventional wisdom that it creates that familiar science fiction vertigo.

Through the interactions these incredible thinkers will have on the Hieroglyph site, I hope we will also put a much larger group of people in conversation with different ideas about the future. And that’s where you come in: this experiment is only going to work if we use these ideas to start a bigger conversation. Come on over and help us build this thing.


Via James Keith
Fab GOUX-BAUDIMENT's insight:

please,if your ideas are really innovative, contribute!!! We are suffering such a failure of imagination, here, in old EU....

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Management, strategy, and foresight compared

Management, strategy, and foresight compared | foresighting | Scoop.it
Distinguishing management, strategic planning and foresight. How the “long view” of futurists, which is at the core of foresight, also benefits management and strategic planning.
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What it Takes to Build a Foresight Mindset

What it Takes to Build a Foresight Mindset | foresighting | Scoop.it
For all of us strategic foresight practitioners and trend researchers: How often do you get asked if you can predict the future? Whether you have a glass ball to see the future? Or when looking back on
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24h de notre vie quotidienne en 2025 (selon les experts)

24h de notre vie quotidienne en 2025 (selon les experts) | foresighting | Scoop.it
FUTUR - À quoi ressemblera le monde dans 10 ans? Cet exercice périlleux de prédiction est un classique de la prospective. Et qui de mieux pour y répondre que des spé
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Les Arpenteurs - Le média des générations futures

Les Arpenteurs - Le média des générations futures | foresighting | Scoop.it
Les générations futures ont leur média - Retrouvez toute l'actualité des générations futures
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NASA 2015 . GISTEMP . 2045    , · ' '

NASA  2015                         . GISTEMP                                .            2045           ,     ·   '    ' | foresighting | Scoop.it
미래예측포탈, 국내최초·유일 '미래예보' 뉴스
Fab GOUX-BAUDIMENT's insight:

le futur en Corée... une affaire sérieuse. 

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ENVISIONING DEVELOPMENT FUTURES: CONVERSATIONS ON THE YEAR 2030

ENVISIONING DEVELOPMENT FUTURES: CONVERSATIONS ON THE YEAR 2030 | foresighting | Scoop.it
This Forum wuill launch the Special Edition of the World Future Review
"ENVISIONING DEVELOPMENT FUTURES 2030"
The event also serves as the official Launch of the HOW WE SHARE OUR FUTURE Initiative.
a transmedia story telling initiative aimed at engaging diverse voices in a global dialogue on The Year 2030.  
Speakers include:
Jay Herson, Ph.D. Lane Jennings Sabine O'Hara Ph.D. 
Moderators: James Calvin Ph.D. Claire A. Nelson, Ph.D. 
 
 
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Are there ID requirements or
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Q&A: A Conversation With Tomorrowland’s Director and Writer | WIRED

Q&A: A Conversation With Tomorrowland’s Director and Writer | WIRED | foresighting | Scoop.it
At one time the future was consistently presented as this bright thing where all these problems were going to be solved. I remember that feeling of wow, starvation will be solved and the air will be clean, weapons will be obsolete because we’ll understand that there are better places to put our energy. And gradually that vision has just been nibbled away at until it’s basically not there. And what’s in its place is this very dark, negative version that everyone seems to have accepted. Damon and I kept looking at each other and asking what changed it? And is it possible to get back to it?
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Eclipse Economie Collaborative, Ludique, Intelligente, Positive, Solidaire, Equitable Contribution Du 7 Mai 2015

Eclipse Economie Collaborative, Ludique, Intelligente, Positive, Solidaire, Equitable Contribution Du 7 Mai 2015 | foresighting | Scoop.it
CONTRIBUTION DE CHRISTIAN RIQUELME, CHARGE DE LA PROSPECTIVE AUPRES DU DIRECTEUR GENERAL DES SERVICES 7 MAI 2015 LA TROISIEME REVOLUTION INDUSTRIELLE LA NOUVELLE SOCIETE DU COUT MARGINAL ZERO l'Internet des objets, l'émergence des...
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Technology and the future

Technology and the future | foresighting | Scoop.it
Understanding the symbiotic relationship between humans and our tools fundamentally requires an ability to appreciate and use both the knowable and unknowable attributes of complex emergence. For decision-making this implies not only a greater degree of humility when agency is wielded from within the constraints of probabilistic thinking, but also a paradigmatic leap to non-probabilistic ways of using the future that make it easier to make sense of the previously unknowable. Enhancing our grasp
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Etude prospective STOR'eBOARD sur les magasins de demain signée Dentsu Aegis Network

Etude prospective STOR'eBOARD sur les magasins de demain signée Dentsu Aegis Network | foresighting | Scoop.it
Attachés et frustrés. Les français oscillent entre ces deux émotions lorsqu'ils parlent des magasins. L'étude prospective STOR'eBOARD, signée Dentsu Aegis Network, révèle 3 scénarii pour le point de vente de demain. Découvrez-les

Via Société Française de Prospective
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[10 Décembre 2015] JEX : L’enfant et le futur

[10 Décembre 2015] JEX : L’enfant et le futur | foresighting | Scoop.it
  L’enfant et le futur ? Nos sociétés, nos territoires, ont peut-être plus que jamais besoin de prospective et de futurs habitants qui en seront les principaux acteurs. Pourtant, l’éveil à la …
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ALLIANCY, LE MAG - HS AUTOMNE 2015 - VIVRE ET TRAVAILLER EN 2030

ALLIANCY, LE MAG - HS AUTOMNE 2015 - VIVRE ET TRAVAILLER EN 2030 | foresighting | Scoop.it
HORS SÉRIE - AUTOMNE 2015 - VIVRE ET TRAVAILLER EN 2030 - VIVREEN2030.ALLIANCY.FR
Fab GOUX-BAUDIMENT's insight:

Daneel et moi... tout un programme ! en page 10.

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Study: Carbon Emissions Could Increase Risk of U.S. Megadroughts

Study: Carbon Emissions Could Increase Risk of U.S. Megadroughts | foresighting | Scoop.it
Droughts in the U.S. Southwest and Central Plains during the last half of this century could be drier and longer than drought conditions seen in those regions in the last 1,000 years, according to a new NASA study.
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Future Timeline | Technology | Singularity | 2020 | 2050 | 2100 | 2150 | 2200 | 21st century | 22nd century | 23rd century | Humanity | Predictions | Events

Future timeline, a timeline of humanity's future, based on current trends, long-term environmental changes, advances in technology such as Moore's Law, the latest medical advances, and the evolving geopolitical landscape.
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Scenario confusions | Hinesight....for Foresight

Scenario confusions | Hinesight....for Foresight | foresighting | Scoop.it
attempts to clarify different uses of scenarios as a way to help understand how to use them
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8 Predictions for 2025: The world in 10 years | Impact Lab

8 Predictions for 2025: The world in 10 years | Impact Lab | foresighting | Scoop.it
Peter Diamandis: In accordance with Moore's Law, by 2025 we'll see an acceleration in the rate of change as we move closer to a world of true abundance.

Via Trudy Raymakers, Société Française de Prospective
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Wilcard is a relative term | Hinesight....for Foresight

Wilcard is a relative term | Hinesight....for Foresight | foresighting | Scoop.it
analyzes the role of surprise in wildcards and weak signals
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Ecrivez le hors-série « Vivre et travailler en 2030 »

Ecrivez le hors-série « Vivre et travailler en 2030 » | foresighting | Scoop.it
Alliancy, le mag lance un grand appel à contribution à tous les INNOVATEURS et VISIONNAIRES pour écrire notre hors-série daté de septembre 2030 : " Vivre et travailler en 2030 ",
A paraître en septembre 2015.
Deadline de remise des contributions : 18/05/2015




Comme nous le ressentons tous chaque jour, le monde va de plus en plus vite. L’année 2030, c’est presque demain… Aussi, il faut disposer d’un temps d'avance, le gagner et le garder. C’est pourquoi Alliancy, le mag se livre à cet exerci
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20/20 Foresight: Crafting Strategy in an Uncertain World - HBS Working Knowledge

Fab GOUX-BAUDIMENT's insight:
Yes indeed! welcoming MacKinsey in the world of Foresight!
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L’Etude prospective du secteur forestier en Afrique

L’Etude prospective du secteur forestier en Afrique | foresighting | Scoop.it
L’Etude prospective du secteur forestier en Afrique : L’Etude prospective du secteur forestier enAfrique(FOSA)MarocMonsieur Mohamed BENDAHMANE Juiillet 2001Les points de vue exprimés sont ceux des auteurs et ne peuvent être

Via Société Française de Prospective
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