Let’s Enable Failure

While overconfidence can be an extremely dangerous thing, the lack of confidence is one of the biggest inhibitors of progress that we face. People who try something and fail have done something extraordinary. Most people don’t try much of anything — out of fear of failure. Tremendous human potential is held back by a lack […]

Post-Scarcity Roadmap

There is good reason to believe that we are heading towards post-scarcity, a new economy in which, basically, anybody can have anything they want. We’ll all be rich: Post-scarcity is a theoretical alternative form of economics or social engineering in which goods, services and information are universally accessible.[1] This would require a sophisticated system of […]

Hallucinogens 2.0

In spite of their reputation as being dangerous and their classification as illicit drugs, hallucinogens may have a lot to offer. Historically, they have played an important role in certain mystical and spiritual traditions, and they have been seriously studied as a potential means of coming to a better understanding of how our minds work. […]

Where the Possibilities Are

Where does the value of big data truly present itself, in the data itself or in the algorithms we use to make sense of it? Bill Franks of Teradata comes down sharply  on the side of the data: …I’m convinced that new information will beat new algorithms and new metrics based on existing information almost […]

Acceleration Prizes

How about a new kind of push prize, one just for making things faster? Just about any process can be improved by being accelerated. Doing things faster means being able to do more. Getting faster means becoming more capable. If you can read faster, you can read more books in the same time. If you […]

The Brain Boost

We already boost our intelligence with external resources, including other people, books, and the Internet. How long before we can start boosting our intelligence inside our brains using implants? If your brain could be made to operate 10-20% faster, if you could completely eliminate mental fatigue or a tendency to become distracted, if you could […]

How Much Data?

Webopedia cites IDC research showing that we — presumably meaning humanity, all of civilization — produced 2.8 zettabytes in 2012. (That’s 2.8 trillion gigabytes, for those who couldn’t remember where “zetta” falls on the scale of hugeness.) In what may be a corallary to Moore’s Law, IDC also says that the total amount of data […]

An Evolutionary Approach

While my recent observation that Data Is Eating Us may have come off as tongue-in-cheek, the reality behind it is no joke. Most people aren’t (yet) transforming their basic bodily functions in order to have more time to analyze data, but there is no question that the fundamental dynamic between human beings and data is […]