In the future, we will all need to be punched in the face. And not because people in the future are really annoying. From Dvice:
The physical structure of your body is defined almost entirely by your genes. There will be some variation, of course, depending on your age, your weight, how well you take care of yourself, and how many times you’ve gotten punched in the face, but things like the space between your eyes, the height of your cheekbones, and the size of your nose are all preset and encoded in your DNA.
Every step closer they get to creating our face out of a tissue sample, those punches in the face will become more and more important.
This weekend, I experienced the mellifluous genius of John Williams conducting the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl through a series of scores he has composed over his fifty-plus year career. The man responsible for creating the iconic themes to Star Wars, Superman, Indiana Jones, E.T., the Extra-Terrestrial, Jurassic Park, Harry Potter (the list goes on, and on, and on) is now eighty years old and is the living embodiment of having a career versus having a job. Last year, he received two Academy Award nominations for War Horse and The Adventures of Tin Tin and shows no sign of slowing down.
Which got me thinking…what will I be doing when I’m an octogenarian? Will I be living my passion? How many people envision a career beyond “retirement age”?
It wasn’t until I witnessed Williams on stage — the exuberance on his face, the vigor in his voice — that I considered the question.
Warren Buffett is 82 years old and while preparing for his abdication of the Berkshire Hathaway throne, appears amazingly involved. Queen Elizabeth is 86 and spoofing herself at global arenas like the London Olympics. It’s conceivable these magnates will remain actively centered in their vocations well into their 90s.
A couple years ago I made the decision to pursue a career I loved, versus succeed in a job (that started out as a career) I liked. Now, as I draw inspiration and guidance from those living and sustaining their dreams, like Margaret Atwood, who at 72 is working with the online writing community at Wattpad to encourage new writers, I look towards the future with an unexpected optic, one that answers “I hope so” to the aforementioned question: Will I be living my passion at 80 years old?
On Labor Day, as we pay tribute to the contributions and achievements of American workers, it seems appropriate to reflect upon on our laboring futures, with farsighted lenses.
It wasn’t enough for M. Night Shyamalan and Will Smith to create a sci-fi film. For After Earth, they patterned an entirely new world history (or at least paid some really geeky people to do it for them).
The film is set 1,000 years in the future, and most of mankind has moved on to another planet light-years away. “Nova Prime has been colonized by humans for about 200 years,” said After Earth screenwriter Gary Whitta during a Comic-Con panel for the film, which is scheduled for release next year. “Earth is just kind of a memory that is taught in history classes.”
Nova Prime looks a lot like Utah (because it’s filmed in Utah), and that’s where the story starts. Smith plays Cypher Rage, a general in a military unit called the Rangers, while his real-life son Jaden plays his fictional son Kitai. The younger Rage aspires to follow in his father’s footsteps and join the Rangers. When an errant asteroid damages their ship, it causes them to crash-land on the most inhospitable planet in the universe — Earth.
Separated during the crash, Kitai must battle his way across an aggressive and deadly planet to reach his injured father, who is in bad shape. The journey will take Kitai through jungle, desert, forest and probably a few Shyamalanesque plot twists.
Japan’s Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism Ministry will soon embark on a project to realize an “autopilot system” for automatic driving, a system for guiding motor vehicles on expressways without human assistance.
The system is expected to contribute significantly to such goals as alleviating drivers’ fatigue, preventing road accidents and easing traffic congestion. It would be for vehicles referred to as self-driving cars capable of sensing their environment and navigating by themselves, with people not required to perform any mechanical operation besides choosing their destinations.
With a view to making an autopilot system a reality in the early 2020s, the ministry will launch a study panel of experts this year, to start full-scale discussions about a self-steering vehicle control project.
The ministry envisages an autonomous vehicle system in which, after leaving your home, motorists would enter an interchange of a nearby expressway while manually operating their cars.
When pulling into the expressway’s lane exclusively for the autopilot system, the driving mode would change to “automatic driving” and input your destination into the system. Motorists would take their hands and feet off the steering wheel, gas pedal and brake.
The President is set to sign an executive order today (June 13, 2012) that aims to cut the cost of broadband construction across federal roadways and properties by up to 90 percent. The White House is also is looking to improve “next-generation applications and (the) digital experience,” running on networks that are a heady 100 times faster than what’s in use today.
Called – U.S. Ignite – the partnership aims to push the growth of next-generation broadband networks, teaming up with over 100 start-ups, universities and existing tech companies like HP, Comcast and Verizon for the project.
The National Science Foundation has thrown in $250 million to assist the partnership’s creation of a national 1-gigabit network that would connect together academic and developer hubs.
Mozilla has decided to team up with the foundation to offer up a $500,000 prize pot for developers looking to help create the “internet of the future”.
This month, on a barren Wyoming landscape dotted with gopher holes and hay bales, the federal government is assembling a supercomputer 10 years in the making, one of the fastest computers ever built and the largest ever devoted to the study of atmospheric science.
The National Center for Atmospheric Research’s supercomputer has been dubbed Yellowstone, after the nearby national park, but it could have been named Nerdvana. The machine will have 100 racks of servers and 72,000 core processors, so many parts that they must be delivered in the back of a 747. Yellowstone will be capable of performing 1.5 quadrillion calculations — a quadrillion is a 1 followed by 15 zeros — every second.
The sheer speed of Yellowstone is designed to burst through the limits of chaos theory — the difference, allegorically, between predicting the odds of blackjack after playing five hands versus playing a million. The machine is expected to give scientists a clearer image of the state of the planet, and its future, revolutionizing the study of climate change, extreme weather events, wildfires, air pollution and more.
Did you ever dream about a future where your communications device could transcend language with ease?
Well, that day is a lot closer. Over the next few days, everyone who uses Gmail will be getting the convenience of translation added to their email. The next time you receive a message in a language other than your own, just click on ‘Translate message’ in the header at the top of the message:
and it will be instantly translated into your language:
Back when we launched automatic message translation in Gmail Labs, we were curious to see how people would use it.
We heard immediately from Google Apps for Business users that this was a killer feature for working with local teams across the world. Some people just wanted to easily read newsletters from abroad. Another person wrote in telling us how he set up his mom’s Gmail to translate everything into her native language, thus saving countless explanatory phone calls (he thanked us profusely).
Since message translation was one of the most popular labs, we decided it was time to graduate from Gmail Labs and move into the real world.
“Love this tip from +Jake Parrillo - I had no idea you could get notified when there was new satellite imagery for your house. Living in the future is pretty great.” - Rick Klau
The full story from Jake:
Last night, I received an email from the “Follow Your World” application of Google Maps that alerted me that there was new imagery for a “point of interest” of mine. Sure enough, I had entered our home address in the tool back when it launched in October of last year and forgot all about it.
The new satellite images are pretty recent – as there’s a new house being constructed on our block and the image has the roof shingles installed and the driveway in; which are both pretty recent events (within the last month or so).
The Follow Your World tool is a neat little app that gives you a heads up when Google updates their imagery of your house. We’re still not on StreetView (our block) so I’m hoping that one day soon, a note like the one above will arrive that will include the details of how our house is now included in the StreetView collection.
TED Talk from the future – as envisioned by Prometheus director Ridley Scott
“If you will indulge me…I’d like to change the world.”
In the year 2023 Peter Weyland will make a speech in Tokyo about how humanity has become the new gods, with the power to create artificial life that looks like a human. This viral marketing campaign is a smart choice by Fox, and as a fan of the Alien franchise, I could watch this over and over again.
Ridley Scott, director of “Alien” and “Blade Runner,” returns to the genre he helped define. With Prometheus, he creates a groundbreaking mythology, in which a team of explorers discover a clue to the origins of mankind on Earth, leading them on a thrilling journey to the darkest corners of the universe.