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Rescooped by vidistar from Tracking the Future!

A Collection of Essays About What We Should Fear

A Collection of Essays About What We Should Fear | VIM |

Each December for the past fifteen years, the literary agent John Brockman has pulled out his Rolodex and asked a legion of top scientists and writers to ponder a single question: What scientific concept would improve everybody’s cognitive tool kit? (Or: What have you changed your mind about?) This year, Brockman’s panelists agreed to take on the subject of what we should fear. There’s the fiscal cliff, the continued European economic crisis, the perpetual tensions in the Middle East. But what about the things that may happen in twenty, fifty, or a hundred years? The premise, as the science historian George Dyson put it, is that “people tend to worry too much about things that it doesn’t do any good to worry about, and not to worry enough about things we should be worrying about.” A hundred fifty contributors wrote essays for the project. The result is a recently published collection, “What *Should* We Be Worried About?” available without charge at John Brockman’s

Via Szabolcs Kósa
Szabolcs Kósa's curator insight, January 16, 2013 7:36 PM

Read the complete collection of responses here:

Rescooped by vidistar from VI Tech Review (VITR)!

How Self-Sustaining Space Habitats Could Save Humanity from Extinction

How Self-Sustaining Space Habitats Could Save Humanity from Extinction | VIM |

Physicist Stephen Hawking suggests that our ongoing efforts to colonize space could ultimately save humanity from extinction. As it stands, Earth is our only biosphere — all our eggs are currently in one basket. If something were to happen to either our planet or our civilization, it would be vital to know that we could sustain a colony somewhere else.

And the threats are real. The possibility of an asteroid impact, nuclear war, a nanotechnological disaster, or severe environmental degradation make the need for off-planet habitation extremely urgent. And given our ambitious future prospects, including the potential for ongoing population growth, we may very well have no choice but to leave the cradle.

We're obviously not going to get there overnight — but here's how we could do it.

Via Szabolcs Kósa, vidistar
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