Insights February 15th, 2021
Each week Nikolas Badminton curates a weekly list of insights and learnings for progressive executives and world leaders – CEO Futures Briefing: From Nano-hospitals to Space Law.
This week we look at building nano-hospitals in every body – a new kind of immuno-strength, new mathematics with the Ramanujan Machine, a structure for ‘space law’, energy futures with The Kardashev Scale, and thoughts on our world as we head towards 2050. Also featured is an insightful interview with Ian Burbidge from The RSA on their ‘Stitch in Time’ report on the Exponential Minds Podcast.
If you have questions about these things we’re sharing, or a challenge with seeing the futures for you and your organization? Reach out to speak with Nikolas today to arrange a time to talk.
Three articles to read
A nano-hospital in every body
“In the future, you will have a whole hospital in your body,” says Professor Kazunori Kataoka, director-general of the Innovation Center of NanoMedicine. “The medical and diagnostic instruments, all working as nanomachines. It’s a concept we call the ‘in-body hospitals’. It isn’t a dream. We think this kind of system will be accomplished by 2045.
“You might have nanomachines made from organic compounds which circulate in your blood, accumulate at disease sites, such as cancer, and treat it. Or a nanomachine will capture chemical information from a disease site and bring it to an implanted chip, where analysis is carried out, and this information is transmitted to doctors outside the body.”
Professor Kataoka is a giant in the world of biomedicine and polymer chemistry; he is the man who developed polymer micelle nanocarriers for targeted drug and gene delivery. The work is now close to being applied in cancer therapy and in 1996 it spawned NanoCarrier, a ¥24 billion company that is spearheading seven nanotech treatments for a host of cancers, including those of the pancreas, lung, breast, stomach, head and neck.
Read more at Nature.com
Machines Are Inventing New Math We’ve Never Seen
A group of researchers from the Technion in Israel and Google in Tel Aviv presented an automated conjecturing system that they call the Ramanujan Machine, named after the mathematician Srinivasa Ramanujan, who developed thousands of innovative formulas in number theory with almost no formal training. The software system has already conjectured several original and important formulas for universal constants that show up in mathematics. The work was published last week in Nature.
One of the formulas created by the Machine can be used to compute the value of a universal constant called Catalan’s number more efficiently than any previous human-discovered formulas. But the Ramanujan Machine is imagined not to take over mathematics, so much as provide a sort of feeding line for existing mathematicians.
Read more at VICE
Department of Defense unveils additive manufacturing strategy
The US Department of Defense (DoD) has released its first-ever comprehensive additive manufacturing strategy which aims to establish a common vision for the use of 3D printing within the nation’s defense program.
The Office of the Secretary of Defense Manufacturing Technology (OSD ManTech) Program Office drafted the strategy in partnership with the US’ military services and other defense agencies, outlining five strategic goals to broaden the adoption of 3D printing throughout its defense sector.
“Additive manufacturing offers DoD unprecedented supply chain agility while enabling our developers to sustain technological dominance for our Warfighters,” said Robert Gold, Director of the Technology and Manufacturing Industrial Base (TMIB) in the Strategic Technology Protection and Exploitation Office (STP&E), and overseer of OSD ManTech.
Read more at 3D Printing Industry
Three videos to watch
The Transformation: A Future History of the World from 02020 to 02050
A compelling case can be made that we are in the early stages of another tech and economic boom in the next 30 years that will help solve our era’s biggest challenges like climate change, and lead to a societal transformation that will be understood as civilizational change by the year 02100.
Peter Leyden has built the case for this extremely positive yet plausible scenario of the period from 02020 to 02050 as a sequel to the Wired cover story and book he co-authored with Long Now cofounder Peter Schwartz 25 years ago called The Long Boom: The Future History of the World 1980 to 2020.
His latest project, The Transformation, is an optimistic analysis on what lies ahead, based on deep interviews with 25 world-class experts looking at new technologies and long-term trends that are largely positive, and could come together in surprisingly synergistic ways.
Space Law Explained
Since the 1960s, United Nations members have worked together to create a framework of treaties, agreements and accords that set the rules for space exploration. Because space law is made up of several different agreements, it can be difficult to understand exactly how it works. In this video, legal scholar Timiebi Aganaba-Jeanty outlines the evolution of space law from the space race era to current commercial space flight missions. Despite space law progress, commercial resource exploitation is still vaguely defined. The private sector is on the verge of making mining activities a reality which could spark the creation of an entirely new economic sector. The international community must come together to create improved legal frameworks and ensure that space resource exploitation benefits all of humankind equitably.
What Do Alien Civilizations Look Like? The Kardashev Scale
The observable universe is a big place that has been around for more than 13 billion years. Up to two trillion galaxies made up of something like 20,000 billion billion stars surround our home galaxy. In the milky way alone scientists assume there are some 40 billion earth like planets in the habitable zone of their stars. When we look at these numbers it is hard to imagine that there is nobody else out there.
A conversation that counts
Each week we dig into the archives of all of the interviews Nikolas has undertaken with the insightful and entertaining Exponential Minds Podcast.
This week we feature Ian Burbidge from the RSA talking about shifting mindsets towards futures thinking and their incredible foresight report – ‘A stitch in time: realising the value of futures and foresight’.
Quote for the future
“You develop an instant global consciousness, a people orientation, an intense dissatisfaction with the state of the world, and a compulsion to do something about it. From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, ‘Look at that, you son of a bitch.”
About Nikolas Badminton, FRSA
Nikolas Badminton is a world-renowned futurist speaker, consultant, researcher, and media producer. He helps trillion-dollar companies, progressive governments and the media shift their mindset from “what is” to “WHAT IF…” The result is empowered employees, new innovative products and incredible growth that leads to more revenues and a more resilient future.
Nikolas advised Robert Downey Jr.’s team for the ‘Age of A.I.’ documentary series, starred in ‘SMART DRUGS – a Futurist’s journey into biohacking’, and features on CTV, Global News, Sirius XM regularly. His mind-expanding research and opinion can be found on BBC, VICE, The Atlantic, Fast Company, Techcrunch, Business Insider, Huffington Post, Forbes, Sputnik and Venturebeat.
Nikolas provides the opening chapter – ‘Start with Dystopia’ in a new book – ‘The Future Starts Now: Expert Insights into the Future of Business, Technology and Society’ for Bloomsbury. He is currently researching and writing a new book that equips executives and world leaders with insights and foresight tools to imagine disruption, strengthen strategic planning, and see unforeseen risks.Nikolas is a Fellow of The Royal Society for Arts, Manufactures and Commerce – The RSA. The organization has been at the forefront of significant social impact for over 260 years with notable past fellows including Charles Dickens, Benjamin Franklin, Stephen Hawking, Nelson Mandela, and Tim Berners-Lee.