In this talk, Social Media strategists and developers Rome Viharo and Maf Lewis reveal the likelihood that Google’s search algorithm may already be sentient, what it means, and what it represents as a metaphor for collective problem solving. Social media will be evolving very quickly to a new form of social administration and discussion that is more likely to produce win-win optimal outcomes for any citizen who chooses to use it. Just like e-mail replaced the letter, we will eventually see social media replace government as we know it today. And government as we know it today will be considered irrelevant.
Perhaps the most interesting consequences of the self-tracking movement will come when its adherents merge their findings into databases. The Zeo, for example, gives its users the option of making anonymized data available for research; the result is a database orders of magnitude larger than any other repository of information on sleep stages. Given that the vast majority of our knowledge about sleep—including the idea that eight hours is optimal—comes from highly controlled studies, this type of database could help to redefine healthy sleep behavior. Sleep patterns may be much more variable than is currently thought.
The key to the technology is zinc oxide (ZnO) nanowires. ZnO nanowires are piezoelectric — they can generate an electric current when strained or flexed. That movement can be virtually any body movement, such as walking, a heartbeat, or blood flowing through the body. The nanowires can also generate electricity in response to wind, rolling tires, or many other kinds of movement.
Transferring files from one computer to another is a major pain. Even cloud-based storage like Dropbox is still irritatingly complicated. Now Pranav Mistry of the Media Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology has the solution. He gets that what we really want is to just pick up stuff from one machine and put in the other, as we do with a physical object. Mistry has designed a system to make this as simple as it could possibly be. “The user touches a data item they wish to copy from a device, conceptually saving it in the user’s body,” he says. “Next, the user touches the other device to which they want to paste the saved content.”
Open Source Ecology is a network of farmers, engineers, and supporters that for the last four years has been creating the Global Village Construction Set – an open source, low-cost, high performance technological platform that allows for the easy, DIY (Do It Yourself) fabrication of the 50 different Industrial Machines that it takes to build a sustainable civilization with modern comforts.
More broadly, the biggest change that I think will come is the ability to grow new tissues and organs, combined with the ability to implant machines in people. That’s something we’re seeing already, with people getting deep brain-stimulating implants to deal with epilepsy and with the installation of heart defibrilators. This combination – advances in biological tissues and further integration of humans with machines – has the potential to really change things over the next few decades. It could transform the way people look at life and aging.
More and more our phones are becoming who we are, and beginning to become the only interface for interacting with the world. Near-field communication is a low-power technology that beams and receives wireless information from up to four inches away. This will be present in stickers on storefront windows and restaurants as well. The NFC stickers interact with a person’s phone, giving them information about the establishment and also at some point (maybe not right away) giving the merchant information about the person. This technology will enable people to make payments just by waving their phones at an establishment. In the near future you will receive very targeted ads because of technology like this, and merchants will collect info about their clients.
Working at the speed of e-mail is like trying to gain a topographic understanding of our daily landscape from a speeding train — and the consequences for us as workers are profound. Interrupted every 30 seconds or so, our attention spans are fractured into a thousand tiny fragments. The mind is denied the experience of deep flow, when creative ideas flourish and complicated thinking occurs. We become task-oriented, tetchy, terrible at listening as we try to keep up with the computer. The e-mail inbox turns our mental to-do list into a palimpsest — there’s always something new and even more urgent erasing what we originally thought was the day’s priority. Incoming mail arrives on several different channels — via e-mail, Facebook, Twitter, instant message — and in this era of backup we’re sure that we should keep records of our participation in all these conversations. The result is that at the end of the day we have a few hundred or even a few thousand e-mails still sitting in our inbox.
“Bird strikes to commercial aircraft pose both a financial and safety risk. Safety engineers at Boeing are interested in ways to minimize both. This often involves understanding the most damaging strikes. Anytime an object collides with another object, there is kinetic energy. It follows that this is true when birds strike aircraft. Visualizing the kinetic [...]
From H20 Cooler Genius: Bacteria normally make energy-rich fatty acids (oil) for their own use. Specialized microbes called cyanobacteria use photosynthesis to convert sunlight into energy, just like plants. Researchers at The Biodesign Institute at Arizona State University (who said ASU was just a party school?) found a way to utilize this process as a source of [...]