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Eric Drexler: Atomically precise manufacturing has implications for everything from medicine to economic development to climate change
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During 2010-12, noted AI researcher and long-time Humanity+ Board member Ben Goertzel conducted a series of textual interviews with researchers in various areas of cutting-edge science — artificial general intelligence, nanotechnology, life extension, neurotechnology, collective intelligence, mind uploading, body modification, neuro-spiritual transformation, and more. These interviews were published online in H+ Magazine, and are here gathered together in a single volume. The resulting series of dialogues treats a variety of social, futurological and scientific topics in a way that is accessible to the educated non-scientist, yet also deep and honest to the subtleties of the topics being discussed.
Between Ape and Artilect is a must-read if you want the real views, opinions, ideas, muses and arguments of the people creating our future.
- Itamar Arel: AGI via Deep Learning
- Pei Wang: What Do You Mean by “AI”? - Joscha Bach: Understanding the Mind- Hugo DeGaris: Will There be Cyborgs?- DeGaris Interviews Goertzel: Seeking the Sputnik of AGI - Linas Vepstas: AGI, Open Source and Our Economic Future - Joel Pitt: The Benefits of Open Source for AGI- Randal Koene: Substrate-Independent Minds- João Pedro de Magalhães: Ending Aging - Aubrey De Grey: Aging and AGI- David Brin: Sousveillance- J. Storrs Hall: Intelligent Nano Factories and Fogs- Mohamad Tarifi: AGI and the Emerging Peer-to-Peer Economy - Michael Anissimov: The Risks of Artificial Superintelligence - Muehlhauser & Goertzel: Rationality, Risk, and the Future of AGI - Paul Werbos: Will Humanity Survive?- Wendell Wallach: Machine Morality- Francis Heylighen: The Emerging Global Brain - Steve Omohundro: The Wisdom of the Global Brain and the Future of AGI - Alexandra Elbakyan: Beyond the Borg - Giulio Prisco: Technological Transcendence - Zhou Changle: Zen and the Art of Intelligent Robotics - Hugo DeGaris: Is God an Alien Mathematician? - Lincoln Cannon: The Most Transhumanist Religion?- Natasha Vita-More: Upgrading Humanity - Jeffery Martin & Mikey Siegel: Engineering Enlightenment
From artificial mammal brains to prosthetics that feel like real limbs, the military’s blue-sky researchers are aiming to bring man and machine closer than ever before.
"DARPA doesn’t just want machines to get smarter; it wants them to work better, together. We’re talking about drones, which have already changed how the U.S. wages war. But the potential of drones is far from untapped and this year’s DARPA budget is brimming with research for new ways to leverage advances in robotics. The $5 million “Swarm Challenge” looks to see if a flock of small drones can all play well together. It involves the development of algorithms that would allow a number of small unmanned systems to work in unison and solve problems. Darpa envisions the drone hive-mind could be useful supporting troops in air, ground and maritime operations and could even help out in obstacle-clearing and search and rescue operations."
Rapid advances in artificial intelligence now threaten the jobs of educated white-collar workers
The use of AI's are becoming a lot more common within the office. With the AI you can essentially eliminate the more "boring" aspects of an office job, but it can also take away jobs. The AI's more modern use is to predict and collect data, often getting better answers than a worker could produce. They mention in the article how there could be two outcomes when having an AI in more offices. One way could either be that the AI simply takes over the (again)boring aspects of the job, or it will take jobs altogether, not only those of a lower ranking job but of higher paid staff as well. I find the second outcome to be more likely, people tend to misjudge projects such as this and do't consider what the consequence will be.
A new study from the IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission) and the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research ISI has found that nanotechnology will bring significant benefits to the energy sector, especially to energy storage and solar energy. Improved materials efficiency and reduced manufacturing costs are just two of the real economic benefits that nanotechnology already brings these fields and that’s only the beginning. Battery storage capacity could be extended, solar cells could be produced cheaper, and the lifetime of solar cells or batteries for electric cars could be increased, all thanks to continued development of nanotechnology.
For sure it Will be a role in storage!!
Brèche radicale ! Nos autos seront-elles plus légères ?
A qualitative change in our information environment that is every bit as seismic as the meteor that marked the end of the dinosaurs. Deity-scale information capability. Complexity driving cognition to ever more competent techno-human networks. Perceptual, conscious, and subconscious processing increasingly outsourced to technology systems. Fragmentation of self across avatars in various increasingly engaging virtual realities. But any such list is misleadingly simplistic. The technological evolution impacting the self is not simply a case of interesting but isolated case studies but, rather, represents profound and accelerating evolution across the entire technological frontier. And the conscious self is where these must be integrated, or at least collated.
An augmented reality game has helped an amputee suffering from phantom limb pain (PLP) enjoy a good night's sleep for the first time in 48 years.
The system, which works by translating muscular electrical signals picked up by electrodes at the site of the amputation into movements onscreen, was developed by a team at the Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg and nearby Sahlgrenska University Hospital. It is an offshoot of work done by Max Ortiz Catalan, who in 2012 developed and trialled a groundbreaking technique for implanting thought-controlled robotic arms and their electrodes directly to the bones and nerves of amputees. He says the idea for the AR phantom pain system came from listening to the struggles of amputee patients at his own clinic. When he decided to trial it, there was one individual whose case was known to be particularly difficult.
The effects of the trial, have been transformative for that individual.
Dr. Gabor Forgacs is a theoretical physicist turned tissue-engineer turned entrepreneur. His companies are pioneering 3D bio-printing technologies that will produce tissues for medical and pharmaceutical uses, as well as for consumption, in the form of meat and leather.
Expect Labs, makers of the MindMeld app for dynamically suggesting content in response to the topics in a spoken conversation, is opening its artificial intelligence engine to the world via the new MindMeld API. It’s the latest example of just how powerful APIs are becoming and offers yet another glimpse into how intelligent we will expect applications to be in the years to come.
This API can enable automated curation and should be considered as a real advantage in some dev projects.
When three continents witnessed food riots in 2007 and 2008, we saw the international food system is not as stable as it looks. There’s unprecedented competition for food due to population growth and changing diets. Experts predict that by 2050, if things don't change, we will see mass starvation across the world.
In this documentary, George Alagiah travelled the world to unravel the complicated web of links that binds the world's food together, bringing it from farm to table. It reveals a growing global food crisis that could affect the planet in the years ahead. What can we do to avert this?
BBC doco link below regarding overconsumption on the one hand and inability to maintain the enormous variety and stocks of food that the recent food markets have enjoyed into our future. I'm a meat eater BTW. I'm not advocating everyone stop eating meat, although some do. But I do think its a worthy problem to help solve. There will be so many solutions already being developed, how to cultivate and develop a long term plan to develop diversification of crops not reliant upon heavy oil and water production and use, that sustain populations through unpredictable climate changes with responsive agility to markets? In my mind a plan that doesn't rely on super farms, but responds to the small farmer and the local market as much as to export demand is preferable and more resilient. On that note I know the robots cometh. How to factor all of those exponential technological leaps in, to include them but not at human expense.
My notes here. Earth Policy Institute Lester Brown foresees food security as the number one challenge for affluent and non affluent countries. He's been an environmental and agricultural analyst for 50 years.
Todays modern farming techniques wont feed us by 2050 unless we double productivity/yield. The finite arable land wont support this. In addition changing weather is destined to reduce all crop yields world wide which will increase food prices. -Richard Warburton head of Bidwells Agribusiness predicts food and water wars.
-Maasai Chief Saamy Ole Terakuai states weather has changed. He cant use his cattle for sale, for food, nor for milk, nor use their hides. Based upon Kenya, Australia in particular is at risk.
-Waitrose Farmer UK recounts volatility in grain market in part due to climate changes. -Oil is used in intensive agriculture for fuel, fertilisers, pesticides, packaging, processing. 100g of cheese requires 140ml of oil. One tomato grown in a greenhouse uses more than a third of a litre of oil. Oil prices inflate food prices let alone affect food production. Cuba's economy collapsed due to their reliability upon oil. A fuel shock fuels a food shock.A very important part of this discussion documents that fuel crops (biofuels) are replacing food crops! At huge cost to locals, workers and future food security. Demonstrating that competition between fuels (cars) and food (for people) needs monitoring, especially as it is further exacerbating the divisions between rich and poor, developed and undeveloped worlds.
-Water is then tackled as a diminishing resource. Obviously essential for food production.
-Overfishing is next. World stocks of seafood could collapse by 2048. 90% of bottom fish (bottom trawls) are already gone! 80% of UK fish species are under threat. Meanwhile the market demand for fish in the UK is greater than ever, sourcing from outside including poorer countries such as Senegal, who themselves have food shortages. Senegalese are forced to share their waters with modern european fleets-Trawlers. Actionaid who monitor overfishing, observe the unlimited trawling by europeans who are profiteering from and at the expense of the Senegalese. 3/4 global fish stock are overexploited.
-Milk and meat consumption are expanding unsustainably as developing world's incomes rise. The film states that there's not enough land to produce the meat that both the developed and developing world require. 2.3kg of grain to produce 1 kilo of chicken, 15kg of grain to produce 1 kilo of beef.
The ultimate goal of nanotechnology-enabled drug delivery, especially with regard to cancer therapy, is to ferry most of the administered drug to the target, while eliminating the accumulation of the drug at any non-target tissues.Nanomedicine applications with targeted nanoparticles are expected to revolutionize cancer therapy. The use of such nanoparticles to deliver therapeutic agents is currently being studied as a promising method by which drugs can be effectively targeted to specific cells in the body, such as tumor cells.
Scientists with the National Ignition Facility (NIF) at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory announced today that they have achieved a critical step in fusion research: For the first time, their hydrogen fuel has given off more energy than it took in.
¿Sería bueno? Sí pero.....
Videogames, digital pens, holograms and tactile learning platforms could all become the norm as education looks set to change dramatically over the next 30 years. With technology dominating in and outside the classroom, interconnectivity is likely to play a key role in helping students adapt to the changing world around them
Imagine a ribbon roughly one hundred million times as long as it is wide. If it were a meter long, it would be 10 nanometers wide, or just a few times thicker than a DNA double helix. Scaled up to the length of a football field, it would still be less than a micrometer across — smaller than a red blood cell. Would you trust your life to that thread? What about a tether 100,000 kilometers long, one stretching from the surface of the Earth to well past geostationary orbit (GEO, 22,236 miles up), but which was still somehow narrower than your own wingspan?
The idea of climbing such a ribbon with just your body weight sounds precarious enough, but the ribbon predicted by a new report from the International Academy of Astronautics (IAA) will be able to carry up to seven 20-ton payloads at once. It will serve as a tether stretching far beyond geostationary (aka geosynchronous) orbit and held taught by an anchor of roughly two million kilograms. Sending payloads up this backbone could fundamentally change the human relationship with space — every climber sent up the tether could match the space shuttle in capacity, allowing up to a “launch” every couple of days.
Think I will pass on this
Science fiction may be coming true.
Hundreds of challenges remain to be solved but as even NASA struggles to maintain an edge, the pay-off of a Space Elevator has never been clearer. The original idea of Konstantin Tsiolkovsky which Arthur C. Clarke turned into a novel could be the revolution space exploration needs.
Better than Borg in an Age of Enhancement Science, Technology & the Future - By Design http://scifuture.org
Craig Venter, the U.S. scientist who raced the U.S. government to map the human genome over a decade ago and created synthetic life in 2010, is now on a quest to treat age-related disease.Venter has teamed up with stem cell pioneer Dr Robert Hariri and X Prize Foundation founder Dr Peter Diamandis to form Human Longevity Inc, a company that will use both genomics and stem cell therapies to find treatments that allow aging adults to stay healthy and functional for as long as possible."We're hoping to make numerous new discoveries in preventive medicine. We think this will have a huge impact on changing the cost of medicine," Venter said on a conference call announcing his latest venture.
Physicists led by ion-trapper Christopher Monroe at the JQI have proposed a modular quantum computer architecture that promises scalability to much larger numbers of qubits. The components of this architecture have individually been tested and are available, making it a promising approach. In the paper, the authors present expected performance and scaling calculations, demonstrating that their architecture is not only viable, but in some ways, preferable when compared to related schemes.
John Martinis visited Google LA to give a tech talk: "Design of a Superconducting Quantum Computer." This talk took place on October 15, 2013
Following up on the success of cochlear and retinal prostheses for people who have lost sensory function, neuroscientists see a limitless horizon for related devices that are able to read electrical and chemical signals from the nervous system to stimulate capability and restore quality of life in persons suffering injury and disease.
In the future, according to researchers, the devices – known as neural prosthetics – will help epileptics, persons with treatment-resistant depression and chronic pain, victims of Alzheimer’s disease, wounded war veterans suffering post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury, persons with speech disabilities, and individuals who have sustained spinal cord injury and loss of limbs, among other applications in the research pipeline.
But before neural prosthetics can advance, engineers will be called on to make innovative use of materials to design and fabricate devices that allow sustained electronic functioning in the harsh environment of the human body, without causing tissue infection and other serious adverse conditions. Research efforts have focused on enhancing the performance of various types of materials used in neural prosthetics, in addition to developing interface technologies that enable the micro devices to be safely implanted in human tissue for long periods.
Very interesting wearable - on the inside of the body, - their big issue is having to solve the contradiction of stiff and flexible, turns out it is what is known as Physical Contradiction based on time. Numerous inventive principles for solving that problem.
Engineers like to make things that work. And if one wants to make something work using nanoscale components—the size of proteins, antibodies, and viruses—mimicking the behavior of cells is a good place to start since cells carry an enormous amount of information in a very tiny packet. As Erik Winfree, professor of computer science, computation and neutral systems, and bioengineering, explains, "I tend to think of cells as really small robots. Biology has programmed natural cells, but now engineers are starting to think about how we can program artificial cells. We want to program something about a micron in size, finer than the dimension of a human hair, that can interact with its chemical environment and carry out the spectrum of tasks that biological things do, but according to our instructions."
Pretty interesting, while I am sure this is still a very long way off, being able to print a cure for a disease could be the ultimate medical advancement.
As technology speeds forward, humans are beginning to imagine the day when robots will fill the roles promised to us in science fiction. But what should we be thinking about today, as robots like military and delivery drones become a real part of our society? How should robots be programmed to interact with us? How should we treat robots? And who is responsible for a robot's actions? As we look at the unexpected impact of new technologies, we are obligated as a society to consider the moral and ethical implications of robotics.
With each new generation of microchips, transistors are being placed closer and closer together. This can only go on so long before there’s no more room to improve, or something revolutionary has to come along to change everything. One of the materials that might be the basis of that revolution is none other than graphene. Researchers at the University of California at Berkeley are hot on the trail of a form of so-called nanoribbon graphene that could increase the density of transistors on a computer chip by as much as 10,000 times.
Moore's law may continue ...
Interesting stuff - wonder what could this mean for computing capacity 10 years down the line?
The advances we’ve seen in the past few years—cars that drive themselves, useful humanoid robots, speech recognition and synthesis systems, 3D printers,Jeopardy!-champion computers—are not the crowning achievements of the computer era. They’re the warm-up acts. As we move deeper into the second machine age we’ll see more and more such wonders, and they’ll become more and more impressive.
How can we be so sure? Because the exponential, digital, and recombinant powers of the second machine age have made it possible for humanity to create two of the most important one-time events in our history: the emergence of real, useful artificial intelligence (AI) and the connection of most of the people on the planet via a common digital network.
Either of these advances alone would fundamentally change our growth prospects. When combined, they’re more important than anything since the Industrial Revolution, which forever transformed how physical work was done.
Andrew McAfee argues that we are advancing so rapidly that our progress is no longer about a difference in degree, but a difference in kind. Along with Erik Brynjolfsson, Andrew is the co-author of The Second Machine Age: Work, Progress, and Prosperity in a Time of Brilliant Technologies
Fair 4.5 minutes video address ( 30% information 70% inspiration) on our step up to new progress levels - rather than just mulitplication etc, and the new shapes of progress building upon progress. Not a revelation, but good to be supported and reminded that we are moving on!
Over the last decade, as DNA-sequencing technology has grown ever faster and cheaper, our understanding of the human genome has increased accordingly. Yet scientists have until recently remained largely ham-fisted when they’ve tried to directly modify genes in a living cell. Take sickle-cell anemia, for example. A debilitating and often deadly disease, it is caused by a mutation in just one of a patient’s three billion DNA base pairs. Even though this genetic error is simple and well studied, researchers are helpless to correct it and halt its devastating effects.
Now there is hope in the form of new genome-engineering tools, particularly one called CRISPR. This technology could allow researchers to perform microsurgery on genes, precisely and easily changing a DNA sequence at exact locations on a chromosome. Along with a technique called TALENs, invented several years ago, and a slightly older predecessor based on molecules called zinc finger nucleases, CRISPR could make gene therapies more broadly applicable, providing remedies for simple genetic disorders like sickle-cell anemia and eventually even leading to cures for more complex diseases involving multiple genes. Most conventional gene therapies crudely place new genetic material at a random location in the cell and can only add a gene. In contrast, CRISPR and the other new tools also give scientists a precise way to delete and edit specific bits of DNA—even by changing a single base pair. This means they can rewrite the human genome at will.
In little more than a year, CRISPR has begun reinventing genetic research.