The Center for Human Imagination – new research institution from the Arthur C. Clarke Foundation

Imagination — one of the least understood but most cherished products of the mind and brain — will become the focus of wide-ranging study at a new center jointly founded by UC San Diego and the Arthur C. Clarke Foundation.

The two institutions have created the UCSD-based Center for Human Imagination, which will involve thinkers from fields as different as technology, sociology, politics, medicine and literature, especially science fiction.

“We are changing the world so fast right now and the level of transformation is profound,” said Sheldon Brown, the UCSD media arts professor who was named director of the center. “This is the outcome of imagination. We need a more thoughtful, deliberative approach to understanding how it works.”

The perils and positives of imagination were a defining theme for Clarke, the British futurist and science fiction author who wrote such acclaimed books as “2001: A Space Odyssey” and “Rendezvous with Rama.”

“Every couple of years, we are literally doubling our understanding of how the brain functions,” Brown said. “We can ask specific questions about how imagination works.

 

Keep reading – UCSD creates Center for Human Imagination

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Gasoline use drops to 2001 levels – recent data shows

The following chart shows U.S. petroleum and gasoline usage for the same three-month period (Dec-Feb) going back to 1992.

Note that petroleum usage is back to 1995 levels, and gasoline usage is back to 2001.

Chart via Global Economic Analysis – (thx to Steven Witt for the tip)

 

This graph highlights a continuing U.S. trend where oil imports have also dropped to 13 year lows, and we are importing less than half of our oil.