The latest issue of Shift profiles their selections of the ten most important “green innovators” – people who are using technology to better the environment. Some of these people are doing some pretty cool projects. And yes, they include Viridian Design founder Bruce Sterling:
Shift: Green Innovators
Andy Baio, a former Getting It
editor resident tech, has an excellent blog called Waxy. He’s recently covered abnormally large kidneys, why the new start-up There.com sounds cool, and Usenet kook Daryl “Shawn” Kabatoff who thinks a person’s name correlates to when they were born.
Business 2.0 has a well written article examining eight near-future technologies that they believe will change the world:
- Biointeractive Materials
- Biofuel Production Plants
- Combinatorial Science
- Molecular Manufacturing
- Quantum Nucleonics
They’ve got a pretty good list, but where are the anti-cancer nano-bots? Cheap solar power? Particle transmitters/teleporters?
Business 2.0: Eight Technologies That Will Change the World
An article in The Economist argues that neuroscience and neurotechnology, from Prozac to electromagnetic stimulation, are more important issues than genetic research. While cloning and stem-cell research has generated extensive debate, neuroscience has been moving ahead unhindered.
The Economist: The future of mind control
The Nature of Time, a workshop gathering of over 50 scientists, took place in the Slovak Republic. They discussed abnormal psychology (such as schizophrenics or Memento style memory loss), psychedelic drugs, near death experiences, and meditation in an interdisciplinary study of the way the mind perceives time.
Wired: Anybody Really Know What Time Is?
Cognitive scientist Johnjoe McFadden’s research indicates that consciousness is a “field effect” resulting from “brain’s electromagnetic field interacting with its circuitry.”
Nerve cells firing simultaneously create powerful waves in the field, which in turn cause other neurons to spark. In this way, the electromagnetic field works as a sort of wireless processor, combining the most important information from the hard wiring of the brain into a wireless signal, which is then transmitted back to the brain as conscious thought.
Why don’t other electromagnetic waves effect our consciousness? Because “… our skull and protective membranes effectively block the radiation. According to his calculations, the fields from these outside sources are far weaker than the brain’s own natural electromagnetism.” I’m really into consciousness theories; anyone have any interesting ones?
Link (Wired article) Link (actual paper).
If you’ve never been to cyberpunk maestro Rudy Rucker’s website, you’re missing out on his free fractal and alife software, artwork, and writing. It’s quite the nifty site.
According to an article on the BBC, the primates from which humans evolved may have originated 85 million years ago – 20 million years earlier than originally estimated and before the extinction of dinosaurs.
BBC: Primate ancestor lived with dinos
The latest issue of Exquisite Corpse (which I’m still slowly working through) has an excellent piece on the relationship between watchers and the watched.
Exquisite Corpse: Voyeurs by Lucy Griffin Appert