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 I read through dozens of blogs and news websites to find those things that we should be aware of.
Top-5 Futures for December 11th: Bacteria Unlocks Immortality features how bacteria that could unlock longer life, storing data on DNA, the VR market is growing, the ‘Asshole Economy’, and hi-tech urban farms.
This Ancient Siberian Bacteria Could Hold the Secret to Immortality
After injecting himself with ancient bacteria found in Russian permafrost, Anatoli Brouchkov says he feels healthier than ever before. But the geocryologist admits that his self-administered treatment was a stunt; the real science happens in his lab at Moscow State University, where he analyzes strains of bacteria to tease out the keys to longevity. We caught up with Brouchkov while he was in Canada recently, investigating Arctic permafrost, to talk about everything from everlasting life and whether ancient bacteria could be the key to longevity to 3.5 million year old bacteria-infused martinis.
Via VICE Motherboard
Data Storage on DNA Can Keep It Safe for Centuries
Computer data has been depicted as microscopic magnetic smudges, electric charges and even Lilliputian patterns of dots that reflect laser beams. It may ultimately move into the fabric of life itself — encoded in the organic molecules that are strung together like pearls to form strands of DNA.
In two recent experiments, a team of computer scientists at the University of Washington and Microsoft, and a separate group at the University of Illinois, have shown that DNA molecules can be the basis for an archival storage system potentially capable of storing all of the world’s digital information in roughly nine liters of solution, about the amount of liquid in a case of wine.
Via NY Times
Virtual Reality Could Generate $70 Billion in Real Money by 2020
Market researcher TrendForce said Thursday that the total value of the virtual reality market, including both hardware and software, will reach $70 billion by 2020.
That would be a tenfold increase from the $6.7 billion that TrendForce expects the industry to generate next year. But even that understates the market, TrendForce insists.
“The development of the VR industry is not solely based on wearable devices launched by major hardware vendors such as Sony, Oculus and HTC,” Tsai said. “Much of the growth drive also comes from independent developers that contribute innovative apps to the VR industry. Their market value is not often reflected in the data. Since making apps does not have a high entry barrier, there has been a proliferation of non-commercial software made by students, independent developers and content providers.”
The Asshole Factory, by Umair Haque
The economy doesn’t make stuff anymore. That much you know. So what does it make?
It makes assholes.
The Great Enterprise of this age is the Asshole Industry.
And that’s not just a tragedy. It is something approaching the moral equivalent of a crime. For it demolishes human potential in precisely the same way as locking someone innocent up, and throwing away the key.
6 incredible high-tech urban farms
Farm life typically calls to mind sprawling fields of plants in neat rows, dotted with bent-over bodies and heavy diesel-guzzling equipment. The world is rapidly changing, though, and so too is the face of agriculture. As the world’s population booms and many people move to cities, a new generation of farms are sprouting up in bustling urban centers. New agricultural techniques are bringing crop yields indoors and, in some cases, underground in an effort to produce more food on a faster timeline with less energy and space. Read on to learn about some of the world’s coolest indoor farms that are taking over the agricultural landscape leaf by leaf.
See the last 4 week’s Top-5 Futures here:
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.