Posts Tagged 'futures studies'



This Just In: Robots Can Read Our Minds

…taking a break from the Future Headlines for a moment. This one is real.

Hark! The Singularity Is Near!

(Guess we’re living in an age of spiritual machines…)

HeadSpace Virtual Commute adds Lunar Line

Continuing a series of “What If” futures incasting headlines for the world of 2043…

HeadSpace Virtual Commute adds Lunar Line

Top-Traded Immaterial Office Firm Now Lands on Moon

NEW DEL SOL—Virgin Milky Way avatar Richard Branson (III) announced a landmark deal with virtual holoconference provider Headspace today, a 3.5 year exclusive contract to extend their telecommute line to Virgin’s New Del Sol base on the expanding ‘dark side’ of the moon. This came as welcome news to the sagging HeadSpace, who, after their 2018 near-monopoly on virtual workspace solutions, has sagged behind upstart Virtual Kosmos these past twenty months. “They just couldn’t compete with virtual time uplinks,” an NBC Knowbot told us. “But one thing V.K. has never been able to do is transmit to the moon. That HeadSpace has been able to do this is—if you’ll excuse the pun—a Thoth-send.” [Continued, C.381]

 

 

 

Google Government Launches Today

Kicking off a week of “What If” futures incasting scenarios for the world of 25 years from now; the good, the bad, and the ugly…

 

Google Government Launches Today

EasyGov startup application one of many facets replacing outmoded bureaucracy

Google U.S. GovGENEVA—After passing unanimously in the UN Committees for Better Governance and Clean Tech last year, government.google.com initiated governance interfaces globally this morning at 12:01 GMT. “We are grateful for the trust engendered from the global community,” Google Chancellor David C. Drummond said via YouTube hololink today. “For years we have worked tirelessly to improve the processes of voting, emergency response, law enforcement, and legislation. Today, we are able to bundle all of these services and offer them, without cost, to governments and citizens everywhere.” The efficiency and technological boost was enabled by Google’s acquisition of the Coca-Cola company in 2014, quickly supplanting its trademark drink with Google Gulp, the neuron-organizing, protein-reading potable version of Google Desktop… [Continued, A.428]

Foresight in a Nutshell

Well not everyone thinks I’m a “lazy out-of-work crazy” like my self-loathing alter ego, but I do get a lot of questions from friends and family wondering just what it is I’m studying and planning on doing with (an aspect of) my life. Sometimes even strangers get in on it.

https://i1.wp.com/plus.maths.org/issue18/features/hawking/images/nutshell.jpg

Last week I was reading Foundations of Futures Studies in Chapel Hill’s Café Driade, arguably the highest-quality coffee shop I’ve ever been to. While two of us were waiting for our drinks, another patron asked me: “Futures Studies? What is Futures Studies?” As near as I can reconstruct, here is how I responded (so be ye instructed, dear reader):

“Futures Studies the mirror-side of history. It’s using what we know about our past and present, and extrapolating it into possible, probable, and desirable future scenarios for tomorrow.”

“So it’s like consulting?”

“Yes. Futurists help humanity navigate the waters of change and articulate our best futures out of a range of potential futures. We work with non-profit organizations, businesses, churches, and even governments.”

“Wow. Sounds interesting.”

“It is!”

I don’t know if he was just being kind, but it is terribly interesting. A multidisciplinary range of inquiry involving systems thinking, sociology, anthropology, history and even science fiction! (And I’m only in my second semester) A little later this year my mentor Jay and I should be hosting some videocasts unpacking some of the delights of Foresight@Regent. Stay tuned.

My View of the Future Now

…is considerably more complex. While not dogmatic about eschatology, I tend to resonate with a perspective known as Transmillennialism, which tries to frame the Old and New Testament apocalyptic discourses in the prophetic, symbolic framework that would have been comprehensible to their original hearers. Doing this has the effect of seeing most (if not all) apocalyptic warnings and promises as being fulfilled, no later than 70 CE. This is, of course, quite different than the “Left Behind” perspective that tends to dominate our novels and video games these days…I still don’t know if my parents are aware that I’m no longer waiting for Jesus to pull an invasion of the body snatchers move!

My thoughts in eschatology tend to flow with my more general conviction regarding the future: It is an open book, and humanity has a vital role to play in it. Our decisions matter. Spiritually speaking, God does not want us to remain children forever; we are intended to grow and mature, becoming co-creators with God in every area of creation. This goes against a certain fatalism in American Christendom’s dominant guiding story, as well as our throw-away American psyche, that lives for momentary gains and little else. This is why I’m in the degree program I’m in: to meaningfully initiate change, and show others how appealing and beneficial this is.

The Future, Through the Eyes of Childhood

As many of you know, I am enrolled in a most unique gradate program: A Masters in Strategic Foresight under Jay Gary. Yesterday began a new semester, and two new classes: LMSF 602, Survey of Futures Studies, and LMSF604, Systems Thinking. Both are shaping up to be awesome classes for navigating (and leading!) change in our postconventional world. For 602, we are encouraged this week to share our thoughts regarding our evolving views of “the future.” I’m going to share them with you, too.

My Childhood View of the Future

When I was a kid, I thought of the future often. Chalk it up to a love for science fiction, particularly time-travel stories. When I was ten years old, I celebrated the New Years switch from 1989 to 1990 with my parents and grandmother, at my grandma’s house. While I was sitting on the floor, playing with a New Years toy I had received, I tried to imagine—in detail—what my future would be ten years hence. I would be 20, I thought…it would be the year 2000. I can’t say it was a very astute prediction: In my mind’s eye, I was still celebrating New Years with mom, dad, and grandma.

I was raised in a very spiritually attuned household, which for me meant happy Baptist-then-Pentecostal fundamentalists. So whatever thoughts I had on a day-to-day basis of the future informed by speculation like the above, or taking the long view of macro-history (inspired by Isaac Asimov’s Foundation series) was somewhat schizophrenically fractured in my mind by the sense that Jesus was going to come busting through some clouds at any moment. “They’ll Call You Gone,” was a rapture T-Shirt I owned as a kid. When I was about 11, a lady in my church stood up and said “The Lord told me that Jesus is coming back before my grandmother dies,” which was met by applause and approval by the pastor. And every sermon, Sunday School lesson, and Youth Group bible study reinforced this dominant picture of the future: “Jesus is coming soon, so the best way of preparation for the future is to make sure you’re in God’s good graces, and getting as many other souls saved as possible.”


Check Out This Free Book Club

Tweetlie-Dee

Error: Twitter did not respond. Please wait a few minutes and refresh this page.

Abolish Slavery – Join the Movement Today!

  • Friend of Emergent Village

    My Writings: Varied and Sundry Pieces Online

    Illumination and Darkness: An Anne Rice Feature from Burnside Writer's Collective
    Shadows & Light: An Anne Rice Interview in MP3 format from Relevant Magazine
    God's Ultimate Passion: A Trinity of Frank Viola interview on Next Wave: Part I, Part II, Part III
    Review: Furious Pursuit by Tim King, from The Ooze
    Church Planting Chat from Next-Wave
    Review: Untold Story of the New Testament Church by Frank Viola, from Next-Wave

    a