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April 29, 2010

Soylent Twitter talk

My talk from Social Business Edge is embedded below (Flash required).

About a minute of set-up, but then I get going. No slides.

Some nice phrases pop up here: "continuous partial attention means continuous partial empathy" is probably my favorite.

April 24, 2010

What I've Been Up To Recently...


My talk at UC Santa Cruz went well. Video may be available at some point.

My talk at Social Business Edge went very well -- I'll have video as soon as it's available.

2010-04-19 21:35:15: @cascio just said like five excellent things in 2 sentences and i can't keep up. #sbenyc #smartpeoplerule via randomdeanna (Deanna Zandt)

IFTF Ten-Year Forecast meeting starts tomorrow evening.

I speak at LIFT10 in less than two weeks, and have been asked to speak at Activate2010 in London on July 1.

Fast Company

Earth Day post at Fast Company: "Earth Day 2020" -- a set of four scenarios of what we might be doing in 10 years...
Scenario #2: "Signs of Desperation"
Unlike scenario #1, in this world the signals of looming environmental chaos are unmistakeable, and the sense of desperation is palpable. Unfortunately, what results is even greater political and social friction, as the dynamic changes swiftly from denial to blame. There are more Congressional hearings on the role that energy and transportation companies played in suppressing debate about the climate than there are hearings to figure out what to do. Environmental scientists are regularly attacked by TV pundits for not doing enough to make people believe that a crisis was at hand. Advocates for a wide variety of quick-response schemes come out of the woodwork, trying to take advantage of a fearful society.

Also, Futures Thinking: A Bibliography at Fast Company.

Other Articles

"Bouncing Back: Building a Resilient Tomorrow," for the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich, International Relations and Security Network.
At the core of the resilience concept is a simple argument: Failure happens, so we need to be ready. Yet strategies that depend upon complete, ongoing success – and that collapse under pressure – are distressingly common. We saw it in Iraq war planning that paid insufficient attention to the potential for post-war instability and in financial models that assumed that home prices only go up; we see it now in environmental arguments that assert that our only option is an immediate, complete cessation of carbon emissions. This way of thinking – call it the “aspirational” model – has us ask one big question: “What can we do to maximize our results?” When everything works as desired, this approach can be quite efficient and sometimes enormously successful.

But what if things don’t go as planned?

"The Potential and Risks of Geoengineering," for The Futurist (World Future Society) -- part of the "20 Forecasts for the Next 25 Years" series.

It’s hard to exaggerate the sheer complexity of the situation. If the great obstacle to our continued survival and prosperity as a species were “just” global warming, achieving success would be tricky but doable. The challenge we face is global warming plus resource collapse plus pandemic disease plus post-hegemonic disorder plus the myriad other issues.

Nonetheless, there are reasons for optimism.

(Some of the essay might sound familiar; I was encouraged to go ahead and re-use bits to streamline the process of writing it.)


April 15, 2010

Yes, I'm Alive

This month has proven to be hellaciously swamped, but that's no excuse for disappearing like that.

I'm still on the hellaciously swamped clock until the end of April, however. One of the things on my checklist is a very short trip to NYC to speak at the Social Business Edge conference. My topic:

    Soylent Twitter: Why the Future is Made of People

Now to figure out what that means...

If you can't make it to NYC, you can still follow the livestream of the Social Business Edge conference here. It's a good set of speakers, and I'm really looking forward to hearing what everyone else has to say.

I've also been asked to speak at the Activate Summit 2010, in London. It's put on by The Guardian, and looks to be an effort to put together a UK-based TED-type event. It's definitely a TED-class set of speakers on the roster this time around, so it should be quite fun.

It turns out that I was in NYC a bit over a week ago, filming an interview for "Sci-Fi Science: Physics of the Impossible," a show on the Science Channel in the US, and ITV in the UK. My bits won't run until the Summer. It seems to be broadly similar to the "That's Impossible" show I popped up in last year, only this one is hosted by an honest-to-goodness scientist: Michio Kaku.

With Michio Kaku

While Dr. Kaku didn't conduct the interview, he was there for it, and he and I had an informal lunch afterwards. Let me say, talking about the Fermi Paradox, the origins of the universe, and boiling spacetime(!) with one of the leading thinkers in string theory was pretty damn cool.

Jamais Cascio

Contact Jamais  ÃƒÂƒÃ‚ƒÃ‚ƒÃ‚ƒÃ‚¢Ã‚€Â¢  Bio

Co-Founder, WorldChanging.com

Director of Impacts Analysis, Center for Responsible Nanotechnology

Fellow, Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies

Affiliate, Institute for the Future


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