Help more people understand more about our digital future options


March 2017

Great Read on Transhumanism: Your animal life is over. Machine life has begun. The road to immortality (Mark O’Connell)

Here’s what happens. You are lying on an operating table, fully conscious, but rendered otherwise insensible, otherwise incapable of movement. A humanoid machine appears at your side, bowing to its task with ceremonial formality. With a brisk sequence of motions, the machine removes a large panel of bone from the rear of your cranium, before carefully laying its fingers, fine and delicate as a spider’s legs, on the viscid surface of your brain. You may be experiencing some misgivings about the procedure at this point. Put them aside, if you can…

Source: ‘Your animal life is over. Machine life has begun.’ The road to immortality | Science | The Guardian

Scientists Can Now Store Digital Data in DNA With 100 Percent Accuracy (Farnia Fekri)

All the digital data we’re creating – 44 trillion gigabytes by 2020 – has to go somewhere. The “where” of the near future, many researchers believe, will be on DNA strands, which can store thousands more gigabytes than the best iPhone on the market. Millions of years of evolution have perfected this form of biological information storage…

Source: Scientists Can Now Store Digital Data in DNA With 100 Percent Accuracy – Motherboard

An absolute Must-Read: Will Democracy Survive Big Data and Artificial Intelligence? (Scientific American)

The digital revolution is in full swing. How will it change our world? The amount of data we produce doubles every year. In other words: in 2016 we produced as much data as in the entire history of humankind through 2015. Every minute we produce hundreds of thousands of Google searches and Facebook posts. These contain information that reveals how we think and feel. Soon, the things around us, possibly even our clothing, also will be connected with the Internet. It is estimated that in 10 years’ time there will be 150 billion networked measuring sensors, 20 times more than people on Earth. Then, the amount of data will double every 12 hours. Many companies are already trying to turn this Big Data into Big Money…

Source: Will Democracy Survive Big Data and Artificial Intelligence? – Scientific American

AI & Automation: The rise of the useless class (Yuval Noah Harari)

Historian Yuval Noah Harari makes a bracing prediction: just as mass industrialization created the working class, the AI revolution will create a new unworking class. The most important question in 21st-century economics may well be: What should we do with all the superfluous people, once we have highly intelligent non-conscious algorithms that can do almost everything better than humans? This is not an entirely new question…

Source: The rise of the useless class |

Great Long-Read: The Myth and Magic of California Style (Eliza Brooke) 

Everyone’s got a California. Mine starts at birth, in San Diego. It carries into the Bay Area through age 7, after which my family relocated to the suburbs of Boston. That’s where it took on greater force.
California became the site of family vacations just as I was plugging into pop culture. Whereas before it was a place to live, now it became a haze of leisure-distorted observations and fictionalized renderings: Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen’s spunky, freewheeling antics in the Venice Beach–based Billboard Dad, Marissa Cooper’s unfazed rich-girl style on The O.C. California now came with a soundtrack, and it was by Phantom Planet…

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