It was an honor to be part of Sarasota TEDx 12-12-12. The theme of the event was “Creativity Matters”. Throughout the day creativity was manifested by talks, performances and creative interactions. Held in the Ringling Museum and the historic Asolo Theater it was a wonderful event.
The talk I gave at the end of the day was entitled “The Concept of Place Has Changed Forever”. You can view it here http://www.futurewow.com/wow/
The Concept of Place Has Changed Forever is one of the Five Contexts of the Shift Age. The Five Contexts of the Shift Age are:
-The Earth Century
-Retrofitting the 20th Century
-The Concept of Place Has Changed Forever
-Biology and Technology Merge
-An Evolutionary Shift in Consciousness
Any aspect of the future in the Shift Age –education, energy, communication, medicine and health care, technology, the arts, anything- will to some degree, be viewed through one of these contexts.
All of them are fully introduced in my new book “Entering the Shift Age”. If you want to immediately read about these Five Contexts you can download the mini-eBook about them here.
It was seven years ago that I first said that while the true cliché of the Information Age was “content is king”, the true cliché of the Shift Age is “context is king”. So understanding the contexts that will shape our lives, our thinking and our future will help us all to navigate the next 15-30 years.
I will write about this context here in the future. For now, I hope you enjoy the video and perhaps the mini-eBook.
January 12th, 2013 A New Super Computer of Incredible Power
Recently, I toured the high speed computing facility at the University of Illinois and got to take a look at an incredible new computer called “Blue Water”. This new computer, developed in collaboration between the University of Illinois and Cray Computing, is simply amazing for the power, capacity and speed it will have.
Here is the description from the University of Illinois Blue Water website:
“Blue Waters is designed to meet the compute-intensive, memory-intensive, and data-intensive needs of a wide range of scientists and engineers. It will deliver sustained performance of one petaflop (one quadrillion calculations per second). The Blue Waters team will demonstrate sustained-petascale performance using eight scientific applications—codes used in everything from earthquake prediction to the study of how a virus enters a cell to modeling severe storms and climate change.”
This new high speed computer is housed at the National Petascale Computing Facility http://www.ncsa.illinois.edu/AboutUs/Facilities/npcf.html which is as LEED Gold certified facility. This means that the significant energy use needed for cooling such a large computer has be greatly lessened, a not insignificant achievement.
The Blue Waters computer has more that 3,000 NVidia GPUs, more than 50,000 AMD processors and more than 380,000 AMD x86 cores. The external bandwidth connectivity with the computer is 100 Gbs scalable to 300 GBs, and the Integrated Near Line Environment is scalable to 500 petabytes. This amount of power, speed and bandwidth will have transformative capabilities on modeling and projections.
While on this visit I was invited to view, with 3-D glasses, a data generated visual recreation of the winds and dynamics of Hurricane Katrina, with an ability to see the actual movement and power of that historic storm. Blue Waters will be used to better able to predict and portray the significant changing weather patterns due to climate change. It will also allow for incredibly data dense modeling of future events.
Here are some photos I took with my phone while on a tour of the facility. It was a bit cold inside, something necessary for compensating for the heat such computing power generates. This is the latest in the future of computing. It truly is Future Wow!
October 5th, 2012 Burning Man and the Future
There is so much about Burning Man 2012 that is relevant to the future of humanity. Many of the ten principles of Burning Man are applicable to our species as we enter the Shift Age, the 21st century and the new millennium.
Burning Man will take you down to who you are, let you see who you are not and then give you the opportunity to alter the trajectory of your personal future. This clearly happens to many burners. There is so much letting go at Black Rock City. While there, people are letting go of ways of thinking, ways of acting, judgments, identities, ego constructs, psychological issues, there is just so much release going on it is palpable. Then, after leaving Burning Man, many burners come back to the default world and give a lot of physical stuff away. Almost everyone I have spoken to who has attended Burning Man has gotten rid of stuff, let go of things and decided to live a bit more simply.
This of course is part of America’s legacy. Emerson wrote “Self Reliance” in the 1830s and Thoreau wrote “Walden” a couple of decades later in the 1850s. Burning Man brings this American philosophy back and radicalizes it showing us how we can face the future with a lighter load of legacy stuff and thinking.
At the same time we are letting go we are creating so much beauty with all the art, structures and vehicles you can see here.
That is one of the many metaphors Burning Man gives us as we move to our Future Wow! Letting go of the constraints and legacy thinking of the past and at the same time creating a beautiful future.
September 23rd, 2012 Future Wow! Goes to Burning Man
Future Wow! was at Burning Man 2012. The seven person strong FW! Team went to Burning Man not only to experience it but to also shoot a documentary. The team was a very creative team, with five members having graduated from the Ringling College of Art + Design.
As you may know, I am Futurist in Residence and Guest lecturer at RCAD so it was a “Ringling” team. Sarah Victoria McCauley RCAD/BOAD ’12 was Chief Creative and Operating Officer of the team, Devin Lee Ostertag RCAD/BOAD ’12 was Director of Communications, Stephanie Rischard, RCAD/Film 11’ was/is Director of Cinematography, Max Pressmen, RCAD/CA ’09 was lead artist, John Steelman RCAD ’02 was the one experienced burner and Evan Glantz, though not an RCAD graduate was the lead fractal artist. A creative team with cameras dropped into the most creative place on the planet for nine days. [The goal is to have the documentary completed by the end of this year]
As anyone who has been to Burning Man knows, it is somewhat hard to explain to someone who has never gone. I would say that it is one of the most significant gathering of humans on the planet and is certainly one of the most important events in the world. It is full of creative artists, musicians, speakers, visionaries, healers, and people who just want to collectively have some serious artistic fun. It is the modern day Renaissance. It is the modern day Resonance.
Click here for some visuals.
Much more to come, so stayed tuned to Future Wow! Burning Man IS a Future Wow!
May 17th, 2012 The Future Wow! Of Media
Media as we know it was largely shaped in the 20th century. Prior to 1900 media as we know it was just books, newspapers and magazines. In other words, print. Then in historically quick order we had radio, movies, recorded music, television, cable television and, in the last decade of the century, the Internet.
What this meant was that we were serially introduced to different media. Each on had a different physical distribution system. In our homes we had bookshelves, radios, TV’s the newspaper delivered, magazines in the mail, a set top box for cable and a computer not connected. So we developed a sense of separation with all media forms. This separation created a sense that we ‘consumed’ media separately. Now of course, all of these media can be viewed, consumed and stored on our electronic digital devices.
It was Marshall McLuhan that first saw that we didn’t really consume media, but that media had become our environment; that we lived in it. He called it the electric village and the global village, and of course he was totally, prophetically correct. That said, most people still felt they were choosing to consume media rather than living in it. Well, now in the 21st century it is clear we are living in a broadband world, getting ever more connected, becoming ever more social with each other and actually living in what I have called the “screen reality”
In the 20th century, media was produced and distributed by media companies. In the beginning of the 21st century, companies outside traditional media started to produce media. Now in the Shift Age every individual with a high-speed connection or a cellular connection has become a media company. Each of us is now a media company.
Welcome to Future Wow! where each of us creates content all the time for all the world. This is something that would have been incomprehensible 50, even 25 years ago.
Welcome to Future Wow!
April 17th, 2012 Future Wow! begins in 2012
2012 will be a threshold year, a year of significant change and the beginning of Future Wow!
Of course we have all heard of the Mayan Prophesy of 2012 occurring on 12/21/12. We will look at that through the filter of Future Wow! here on line as we move toward that date.
We know that this year is also a quadrennial election year in the U.S. and this will bring about much thought of change regarding the country and its’ tired and dysfunctional political system.
We know that we are in the 21st century yet many of the political leaders, institutions and vested interests are still operating on the legacy thinking of the 20th century. 2012 will be the year when those that think this legacy thinking still has value will come up against those that see that this new century needs new thinking. I have been saying for almost two years that 2010-2020 is thefirst decade of 21st century thought as we have propelled ourselves through 2011 on the thinking of the past century and it is now time to turn and face this century.
2012 will be year of probable demonstrations in the streets in the US and other developed countries where poverty is increasing, the middle class is shrinking, frustration and hopelessnessis spreading and many question the direction their societies and countries are heading.
Civilization is a process, not a place. The creative destruction of the old order always precedes the birth of a new order. What 2012 will be about is this process. All around I see the creative destruction of old ways of thinking, of old ways of doing things, of old industries that are slowly dying. This is to prepare for the newness that will follow, the new ways of thinking and ways ofdoing business and living that will be transformational in scope.
2012. Face it! Embrace it! Future Wow!
August 30th, 2011 We Live in a Time of Future Wow! – Mobile Phones
We live in a time of Future Wow! It seems like almost every week we see something, read about something or in some way are exposed to something new that makes us say “Wow!” A lot of times this occurs because of the stunning revolution in what used to be called cell phones and now are really hand held mobile communications computers. It might be watching a video on our handheld device, using GPS on our phone to navigate a new place, or having a video chat with someone on our iPhones. Not only can we look at each other, we can point the camera the other way to actually share a live video of what we are watching. Wow!
As Arthur C. Clarke so famously said, “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.”
We have gone from land line phones, tying us to places when we talked, to cell phones which freed us from place, to smart phones that allowed us multiple forms of communication to the current App phone which has become a filter through which we view the world. What we do and can do with our App phones is simply transformative, nothing less. If I could go back to the mid-90s, when both my well educated, well informed and relatively technologically savvy parents were still alive and show them my iPhone 4 they would not be able to comprehend it. They would react in a way that speaks to the above quote, as their inability to comprehend what I had in my hand could only conceptually be put into the realm of magic. They would not have had the 15 years since then to be conditioned to our current reality of Future Wow! that all reading this have experienced
In the Wow! part of this web site is a wonderful visual of a rotating earth from 1980 to 2020 that shows the incredibly rapid growth of cell phones. A higher percentage of humans alive today have cell phones than have electricity in their homes. Electricity first came into the general marketplace 125 years ago; cell phones 30 years ago. Please look at this great graphic by Max Pressman to get a dynamic sense of this incredible technological transformation.
There are 6.9 billion humans on earth. There are now almost 5.25 billion users of cellphones. This means that for the first time in human history there is no time, distance or place limiting human communication. Please read that sentence again, out loud. Humanity, for the first time, no longer has to be restricted by place or distance when communicating with another human.
June 15th, 2011 Shift Age Forecasts
In the past I have written that as a futurist, it sometimes feels like I live in a state of déjà vu. I spend a lot of time researching and looking into the future to develop the forecasts and trends that I write and speak about. I experience them, see them, and have varying degrees of certainty when I publish or present them.
Since 2011 began, so many of the forecasts and trends I predicted over the last four years are coming true, I feel as if I’m in an almost constant state of déjà vu. Now, as I spend some 22 hours traveling from Chicago to Singapore, scanning stacks of periodicals from around the world, this feeling is amplified. Read More
June 14th, 2011 Context is King
In the Information Age, the phrase was “Content is King” While that may still be true, in the Shift Age, “Context is King”
June 13th, 2011 The Power of Accelerating Electronic Connectedness
As anyone who has read my book The Shift Age or has heard me deliver a presentation of the same name knows, Accelerating Electronic Connectedness is one of the three fundamental forces of the Shift Age. Since 2007, I have consistently stated that this force will not only create a global connectivity that will empower developing countries by lessening ignorance and challenging institutional authority, it will also create an extension of McLuhan’s electric global village.
In a recent column titled “Shift Age Forecasts,” I discussed the déjà vu type of reality I live as many of my forecasts come true. I stated that I would review some of the ones listed in that column to provide deeper examination of why they have become reality. In that column, I stated:
- The Concept of Place Has Changed Forever – My TEDx Talk
- A New Super Computer of Incredible Power
- Burning Man and the Future
- Future Wow! Goes to Burning Man
- The Future Wow! Of Media
- February 2013 (1)
- January 2013 (1)
- October 2012 (1)
- September 2012 (1)
- May 2012 (1)
- April 2012 (1)
- August 2011 (1)
- June 2011 (8)