The Asymptotic Leap
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The Asymptotic Leap
Technology and the experience of what it means to be human are evolving at an exponential rate, entering the steep of an asymptotic curve. If we don't destroy ourselves first, it is likely in a few decades we may not even recognize ourselves as what we are today. Hang on, we're embarking on one helluva ride and the outcome is a real nail biter.
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Satellite Photos of Earth - A 30-Year Time Lapse Presentation

Satellite Photos of Earth - A 30-Year Time Lapse Presentation | The Asymptotic Leap | Scoop.it
Exclusive timelapse: See climate change, deforestation and urban sprawl unfold as Earth evolves over 30 years.
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Printable 'bionic' ear melds electronics and biology

Printable 'bionic' ear melds electronics and biology | The Asymptotic Leap | Scoop.it

Scientists at Princeton University used off-the-shelf printing tools to create a functional ear that can 'hear' radio frequencies far beyond the range of normal human capability. 

 

The researchers' primary purpose was to explore an efficient and versatile means to merge electronics with tissue. The scientists used 3D printing of cells and nanoparticles followed by cell culture to combine a small coil antenna with cartilage, creating what they term a bionic ear.

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The Milky Way Galaxy

The Milky Way Galaxy | The Asymptotic Leap | Scoop.it
The Galaxy
by Mike Gottschalk
The Asymptotic Leap's insight:

I mean, really, doesn't this put things in perspective?

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Occupy Love - The Film

Occupy Love - The Film | The Asymptotic Leap | Scoop.it

Occupy Love, a film by Velcrow Ripper (Scared Sacred, Fierce Light) connects the dots in this era of rapidly evolving social change. Featuring interviews with some of the world’s key social and economic visionaries along with captivating insider scenes from the Egyptian Revolution, the Indignado uprising in Spain, Occupy Wall Street, the climate justice movement, and beyond, Occupy Love shows that love can unite as much as greed can divide.

 

A moving, transformative, heartfelt film, featuring stunning visuals and rich soundscapes, Occupy Love is a powerful cinematic experience that will leave audiences inspired.

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Window Socket – Solar Energy Powered Socket

Window Socket – Solar Energy Powered Socket | The Asymptotic Leap | Scoop.it

The Window Socket offers a neat way to harness solar energy and use it as a plug socket. So far we have seen solutions that act as a solar battery backup, but none as a direct plug-in. Simple in design, the plug just attaches to any window and does its job intuitively.
Read more at http://www.yankodesign.com/2013/04/26/plug-it-on-the-window/#BLtkEMRsHlKmDI5O.99

The Asymptotic Leap's insight:

Simple. Brilliant.

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John McWhorter: Txtng is killing language. JK!!! | Video on TED.com

Does texting mean the death of good writing skills? John McWhorter posits that there’s much more to texting -- linguistically, culturally -- than it seems, and it’s all good news.
The Asymptotic Leap's insight:

Fascinating take on texting and how it is really just an extension of, or rather, evolution of, spoken language. 

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Why We Could All Use a Heavy Dose of Techno-optimism

Why We Could All Use a Heavy Dose of Techno-optimism | The Asymptotic Leap | Scoop.it
We're on the cusp of a bio-tech/nanotech/artificial-intelligence revolution that will open up new worlds of exploration. And we should open our minds to the limitless, mind-boggling possibilities.
The Asymptotic Leap's insight:

An older article, but the points are as relevant as ever.  

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"Homo sapiens, the first truly free species, is about to decommission natural selection, the force that made us... Soon we must look deep within ourselves and decide what we wish to become."

- E.O. Wilson, American biologist, theorist, and author.

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Charles Eisenstein: The Space Between Stories

Charles Eisenstein: The Space Between Stories | The Asymptotic Leap | Scoop.it

Civilization's transition mirrors that of many individuals: an old world falls apart and eventually we step into a new. As that happens, much that was once certain disintegrates, and our old ways of making choices and effecting change become obsolete. Vast new possibilities arise, even miraculous possibilities, yet we may also go through periods of loneliness and doubt. Let us ground ourselves more solidly in the new world, so that we may more fully believe - and enact - what we know in our hearts. Learn more about the theme of this talk in a recent article by Charles entitled, 2013: The Space Between Stories http://www.realitysandwich.com/node/166725

 

David Korten, author of When Corporations Rule the World, called Eisenstein “one of the up-and-coming great minds of our time.” Eisenstein graduated from Yale University in 1989 with a degree in Mathematics and Philosophy, and spent the next ten years as a Chinese-English translator. He currently lives in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania with his wife and four sons. For more information about Charles Eisenstein, visit http://charleseisenstein.net/

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Implanted into Bacteria, Synthetic DNA Functions as a Diagnostic Computer

Implanted into Bacteria, Synthetic DNA Functions as a Diagnostic Computer | The Asymptotic Leap | Scoop.it

In the movie Fantastic Voyage, a submarine and its crew were shrunk and injected into the body of a sick man in an attempt to save his life. Despite the fictional nature of this story, in the near future miniaturized, organic “computers” may roam our bodies, detecting early-stage diseases and treating them on the spot. There are already 10 times more bacterial cells than human cells in our bodies – so why not add a few more?

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Electronic Tattoos Will Control Machines Via The Mind

Electronic Tattoos Will Control Machines Via The Mind | The Asymptotic Leap | Scoop.it

A group of scientists led by Todd Coleman at the University of California at San Diego is developing wireless flexible electronics one can apply on the forehead just like temporary tattoos to read brain activity. Electronic tattoos are almost invisible on skin, cause they’re about 100 microns thick. They are made of a circuitry embedded in a layer or rubbery polyester that allow them to stretch, bend and wrinkle. The tattoos can detect electrical signals linked with brain waves; they include solar cells for power and antennas that allow them to communicate wirelessly or receive energy. Todd Coleman claims that, If placed on the throat, these gasgets could act as subvocal microphones through which people could communicate silently and wirelessly. This noninvasive means of controlling machines via the mind might in future enable people to fly drones with only thought and talk seemingly telepathically without speech over smartphones.

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New Interface Allows Humans to Move a Rat’s Tail With Their Thoughts

New Interface Allows Humans to Move a Rat’s Tail With Their Thoughts | The Asymptotic Leap | Scoop.it
In what might be the first documented case of technologically-assisted interspecies telepathy, an international team of researchers has successfully created a non-invasive brain-to-brain interface that allows humans to make a rat move involuntarily.
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The Talk TED Banned: The War On Consciousness - Graham Hancock Talks Ayahuasca, Shamanism, Society, Consciousness

Recently Graham Hancock discovered that his TEDx Whitechapel presentation, "The War on Consciousness," was censored by the TED leadership -- removed from the TED YouTube page and criticized for reasons which TED later admitted to be unfounded. An outraged grassroots campaign led to TED reposting the video, though on an obscure blog page rather than on their popular YouTube site.  Clearly Graham's provocative talk about visionary plants and consciousness struck a nerve. Was it his frank discussion of the Amazonian brew ayahuasca? Or his consideration of a spiritual world view that challenges core assumptions of the materialist paradigm? Before its removal from YouTube, the video had received 130,000 views. What is it about Graham Hancock's message that so many find inspiring, but TED felt it must distance itself from?  Here is a video of the talk the TED took down.

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Hidden Money Hoards Revealed...and Other Transparency News

Hidden Money Hoards Revealed...and Other Transparency News | The Asymptotic Leap | Scoop.it

You may have heard that a consortium of journalists, working on a cache of 2.5 million recently spilled files, has cracked open the secrets of more than 120,000 offshore companies and trusts, exposing hidden dealings of politicians, con men and mega-rich the world over. If preliminary reports prove to be true, it would be a revelation ten times larger than last year's WikiLeaks Affair and vastly more important. Indeed, it could portend the start of a worldwide radical movement for transparency that I forecast (including - for dramatic effect - a world war on Switzerland) in my 1989 novel Earth.   


Via DBrin
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Building a digital life form: OpenWorm, Open Source

Building a digital life form: OpenWorm, Open Source | The Asymptotic Leap | Scoop.it
(Phys.org) —The worm Caenorhabditis elegans is one of the most widely studied creatures. Scientists consider the worm a model organism for exploring animal development including neural development.
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Live Streaming of the Earth From the International Space Station Set to Begin in December

Live Streaming of the Earth From the International Space Station Set to Begin in December | The Asymptotic Leap | Scoop.it

Urthecast says that two high-resolution cameras, one for video and one for stills, will be launched into space in October on a Russian rocket and bolted to the International Space Station's hull by the end of the month. Then, a few months later, they'll be turned on and start streaming content live to the Earth.

The Asymptotic Leap's insight:

A 24x7x365 look into the mirror...

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Another simple technology for powering the Global Brain (and bringing light to dark places)

Another simple technology for powering the Global Brain (and bringing light to dark places) | The Asymptotic Leap | Scoop.it

Millions of people around the world use charcoal and wood-fueled stoves on a daily basis. VOTO (above), developed by the company Point Source Power, converts the energy these fires release as heat into electricity, which can power a handheld light, charge a phone or even charge a spare battery. The company initially designed VOTO for backpackers and campers in wealthy countries so they can charge their devices during trips, but is also trying to find a way to make it accessible to residents of the developing world for daily use.

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Watch what happens when you wring out a washcloth in space

Watch what happens when you wring out a washcloth in space | The Asymptotic Leap | Scoop.it
This is just excellent. ISS Commander Chris Hadfield was recently asked by high school students Kendra Lemke and Meredith Faulkner to demonstrate what happens when you wring out a waterlogged washcloth in space.
The Asymptotic Leap's insight:

An amazing, perception-changing demonstration of weightlessness.

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"In the future we'll look back on the past and laugh about the so-called distinction between the real and the virtual worlds."

- William Gibson, science fiction author

The Asymptotic Leap's insight:

Perhaps there really is no difference, each is only a construct of the mind.

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1993 vs. 2013

1993 vs. 2013 | The Asymptotic Leap | Scoop.it
The Asymptotic Leap's insight:

Sometimes we don't realize how amazing and fast the evolution of technology is. Oh, and you can add these to the first photo too: portable voice recorder, radio, guitar tuner, flashlight, drawing tablet, dog whistle, compass, altimeter, ruler, car finder....the list goes on. 

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Web 4.0: The Ultra-Intelligent Electronic Agent is Coming

Web 4.0: The Ultra-Intelligent Electronic Agent is Coming | The Asymptotic Leap | Scoop.it

The evolution of the Web today is happening faster than the transition from Web 1.0 to Web 2.0 due to processing power, bandwidth and storage, "creating a curve of exponential change.

 

Web 4.0 is about the ultra-intelligent electronic agent. This agent will "recognize you when you get in front of it because all of your devices are getting a little camera. And with facial recognition, they’ll know it’s you." Burrus says you will be able to give your agent a personality. It will say to you things like this:

 

"Good morning. You're flying to Boston today. Take a raincoat, it's raining. By the way, that fight you were taking, it’s already been canceled. Don't worry about it. There was a mechanical. I've already booked you on a new one. I'll tell you about on the way to the airport. But remember you’re going to exercise every day and I’m here to remind you that you’re going to exercise."  And you might say, “I don't know if I want to exercise today,” and It'll show you a nude profile of yourself.  And you’ll say, “You know what, I think I'm going to exercise today.”


Via Pierre Tran
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Pierre Tran's curator insight, March 28, 2013 6:19 AM

Ah, je suis has-been avec mon Web 3.0...

Baptiste Vannesson's comment, March 29, 2013 6:33 PM
On est deux, alors... Le Web 3.0 commence seulement à s'installer, et on parle déjà de son successeur. C'est un peu comme le W3C qui travaille sur CSS4 alors que CSS3 en est encore au stade de développement. Du coup, je me demande si je ne devrais pas élargir ma veille parce que ce n'est pas la première fois que je vois un article sur le "Web 4.0". Je viens même de voir une conférence sur le "Web 5.0", c'est dire...
Baptiste Vannesson's curator insight, March 29, 2013 6:45 PM

Le Web 3.0 n'est pas encore tout à fait là, mais qu'à cela ne tienne ! Le Web 4.0 montre déjà le bout de son nez, et promet d'être encore plus intelligent...

A priori, le Web 4.0 sera marqué par l'apparition d'un agent numérique capable de nous identifier et d'interagir avec nous. Ange gardien ou démon familier ? L'avenir nous le dira...

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New Form Of Computation Mimics The Human Brain

New Form Of Computation Mimics The Human Brain | The Asymptotic Leap | Scoop.it

The next frontier for the robotics industry has always been to build machines that think like humans. Scientists have pursued that elusive goal for decades, and some now believe that they are now extremely close to achieving the goal.

DARPA's Physical Intelligence program represents a potential major advance in artificial intelligence research, as the “physical intelligence” device would not require computer programming or the use of human controllers to provide directions, as with traditional robots. Instead, the device operates via nano-scale interconnected wires that send signals through synthetic synapses, just like the human brain. Such a system is capable of remembering information, meaning that robots might be able to act like humans in the foreseeable future.

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IBM’S WATSON: INTERFACING WITH GOD

IBM’S WATSON: INTERFACING WITH GOD | The Asymptotic Leap | Scoop.it

IBM’s Watson is like nothing we have ever seen before.

 

While humans use neuronal networks to store information  in the brain, Watson has the ability to use the Internet and internal data as its extended mind. When asked a question, it creates a statistical average based upon the information gathered, and gives a confident probabilistic answer.

 

Yes, I said confident. Let me give you an example to explain my meaning.

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World’s Smallest Microprocessor to Be Swallowable

World’s Smallest Microprocessor to Be Swallowable | The Asymptotic Leap | Scoop.it

KL02 and other miniature chips like it will invisibly enliven virtually everything we interact with on a daily basis. Richard York of Embedded Processor Products says the Internet of Things ecosystem could “range from tiny sensors helping to monitor crops and deliver irrigation, to microcontrollers that enable entire buildings to be more energy efficient.”

But that’s just version one—the next iteration would place these tiny microchips in the human body to release medicine, perform diagnostics, fight cancer, or provide a digital  interface between brains and machines. Freescale’s Steve Tateosian told Wired, “We are working with our customers and partners on providing technology for their products that can be swallowed but we can’t really comment on unannounced products.”

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$80 Android Phone Sells Like Hotcakes in Kenya, the World Next?

$80 Android Phone Sells Like Hotcakes in Kenya, the World Next? | The Asymptotic Leap | Scoop.it
It seems like just yesterday when only the slickest kid on the block had a smartphone, but now, this revolutionary gadget is selling like hotcakes in the developing world.
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