Benefits of Membership
Please see our weekly newsletter collection below. Our own staff and members contribute bits and bytes of interesting news and articles. They say that futurists make funny historians but we do our best to bridge that divide by illustrating our past themes and speakers as they develop and evolve. We hope that you enjoy reading these communications as much as we enjoy creating them for you. And if you have any news to share, please contact any member of our staff.
MIT traffic researchers have found that if drivers stopped tailgating they could reach their destination twice as quickly (Tim Landgraf, Washington, D.C., Sep 2015). In other news, world hunger would end if everyone limited themselves to 1800 calories per day.
Have you ever let your browser store your address and other personal details to save time in future logins? Watch out. According to Arvind Narayanan (Washington, D.C., Sep 2017) and his colleagues at Princeton University’s Center for Information Technology Policy, a third-party script may be capturing your username and password.
In other browser news, a team of grad students won a Yale University hackathon with a Chrome extension that flags biased stories and fake-news sites (Giovanni Luca Ciampaglia, Boston, Apr 2017, and Washington, D.C., Sep 2015; Douglas Guilbeault, Washington, D.C., Sep 2017).
Bina48, the robot that has spoken at a TEDx and been a panelist at SxSW, now has a certificate of participation from Notre Dame University after completing a “Philosophy of Love” course there. Now maybe Bina48 could turn around and teach that class to Rodolphe Gelin’s emotive robots (Brooklyn, July 2016).
Good news: The Arecibo Planetary Radar is back, providing data about near-Earth asteroids after having been damaged by Hurricane Maria (Dennis Wingo, San Francisco, Dec 2014).
TTI/V member Georgia Tech will host the National Academic 3D Printing Conference (Construct3D) on October 5–8, 2018.
Metalenses—flat surfaces that use nanostructures to focus light—just got a lot better. (Ren Ng, Seattle, Dec 2012)
With 2018 marking the 50th anniversary of Doug Engelbart’s (Phoenix, Oct 1999) mother of all demos (David Smith, San Francisco, Dec 2017), the Computer History Museum (Gordon Bell, San Jose, Feb 2012) will be releasing the source code of the Apple Lisa—the first commercially available GUI-enriched PC. In the meantime, emulations are available from the Internet Archive (Brewster Kahle, San Francisco, Feb 2005, Jun 2016, and May 2016), demonstrating the value of retaining the ability to peek into the past (Stewart Brand, San Diego, Feb 2000).
And yet, the Library of Congress will no longer be archiving all public tweets, presumably to free up space for more cat videos.
From self-driving cars to space travel, Rodney Brooks (Atlanta, Dec 2004) has published a wide-ranging list of predictions—with specific dates and date ranges, all the way out to 2050. We expect Gordon Bell to agree with Rodney’s approach, but will he be betting with or against him on specific questions? (And when will an AI be able to properly parse who’s who in the prior sentence (Doug Lenat, Pittsburgh, Oct 2012)?)
“Having ideas is easy. Turning them into reality is hard. Turning them into being deployed at scale is even harder.” —Rodney Brooks