Each week Nikolas Badminton, Futurist Speaker, summarizes the top-5 future looking developments and news items that I find to be inspiring, interesting, concerning, or downright strange. Each day he reads through dozens of blogs and news websites to find those things that we should be aware of.
In Future Trends – Banks abandon poor countries we look at the trends that we should be aware of today, July 22nd, 2016. How smaller, poorer countries are being abandoned by big banks, filament muscle
Banks abandon the Caribbean, local bitcoin exchange experiences 33% increase in users every month since February
Smaller, poorer countries are being abandoned by big banks in an exodus commonly referred to as “de-risking” or “de-banking.” In the Caribbean, where many small countries with poorer populations reside close to each other, the problem is getting so bad that local businesses regularly have a hard time receiving remittances and paying suppliers outside of their own country, even when their trading partner is just the next island over.
I am concerned that all is not well in this world of small countries with small financial systems. In fact there is a risk that they become more marginalized.
Madame Lagarde, Director IMF
Musculoskeletal Robot Driven by Multifilament Muscles Resembles a Human’s Movements
Researchers at the Suzumori Endo Robotics Laboratory at the Tokyo Institute of Technology have a different take on robotics in the form of a musculoskeletal robot that moves like a human.
Essentially, a fake skeleton covered in a bunch of cables, the musculoskeletal robot is powered by artificial multifilament muscles that function like real human muscles when electrical current flows through them.
Basically, the fake muscles can contract and expand similar to a real human’s movements thanks to the electrical current, even enabling the skeleton’s head to move around realistically.
At the moment, the Suzumori Endo humanoid can’t support itself, but the robot’s legs do contain the exact same number of muscles that a real human being’s legs use to walk.
The researchers hope that as technology advances and the musculoskeletal robot progresses, it will eventually be able to walk on its own and self-balance, similar to the ATLAS robot.
Meet Kasita: The Micro-Housing Start-Up That’s About To Revolutionize Real Estate
You can tell immediately that Jeff Wilson, the 42-year old founder of Kasita, an Austin-based micro-housing start-up, has been courting venture capital. He has his sales pitch nailed—which is pretty impressive for a former university dean and professor who used to live in a dumpster.
When I ask Wilson what fundamental problem his company is solving he tells me without flinching: “Kasita is on the verge of disrupting the urban housing market in ways not seen in real estate and development in 150 years.” Wilson’s confidence may just be spot on. And perfectly timed.
Most nights I’d just stare at the dumpster ceiling. And one night I had the first of two ‘a-ha’ moments. The first was realizing that smaller spaces could mean better lives. My stuff didn’t own me anymore. I had more income. I could pick up and move my dumpster to another great part of town any time I wanted.
A half-built futuristic ‘eco-city’ is sitting abandoned in the Arabian Desert
Abu Dhabi officials had big plans for Masdar City.
When they broke ground on the development in 2008, it was slated to be the world’s most sustainable city, with zero carbon emissions, zero waste and zero cars. But construction, which was originally scheduled to wrap up this year, has been much slower than expected. And the city has not achieved full carbon neutrality — according to the Guardian, current plans suggest that only half of the city’s power will be renewable.
As of now, the city sits mostly empty — only around 300 people live there, and the completion date has been pushed back to 2030.
French photographer Etienne Malapert became interested in Masdar City while studying at ECAL, a Swiss school of art and design. He visited Masdar City last year and documented its buildings, streets and plazas.
THE FUTURE OF ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE – Kevin Kelly on London Real
Via London Real
Nikolas Badminton is a world-respected futurist speaker that researches, speaks, and writes about the future of work, how technology is affecting the workplace, how workers are adapting, the sharing economy, and how the world is evolving. He appears at conferences in Canada, USA, UK, and Europe. Email him to book him for your radio, TV show, or conference.