Category Archives: Futurism

#SpaceSunday: Indian Moonshot, US-Russia #SpaceRace2.0, #SpaceArt 

A lazy, strong-coffee Sunday is just the right time to muse and dream about our future journey into space from moon shots to Space Race 2.0.

#Masable: An Indian startup could be the first private entity to land on the moon

#ArsTechnica: The United States should surpass Russia in rocket launches for the first time

#ScienceAlert: SpaceX wants to surround Earth with an internet service that’s 200 times faster

#NewAtlas: Art project lets people launch their laugh into space

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AI: Savior? Demon? Or Boring Kubrick Film?

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Credit: nood2708 via DeviantArt

We just can’t trust Artificial Intelligence. At least that’s the claim rampant across Western pop culture.

AI run amuck is a well-worn Hollywood trope — from the eponymous HAL 900 in 2001 or the more recent AI robot Eva in the highly acclaimed film Ex Machina (Oscar-caliber performance by Alicia Vikander – just saying).

You know the story: In the spirit of extreme hubris, a mad and/or self-deluded scientist cooks up a machine that passes the Turing test. The AI entity (usually stuck with some acronym moniker) is declared to be intelligent (a label that many would say is purely subjective). The world rejoices. It’s implied the AI can solve all of humankinds’ maladies.

But then … Something. Goes. Wrong. Through some often unexplained or glossed over glitch, the AI decides humans are not worth serving, leading to wholesale slaughter or enslavement of its homo sapien masters. Only the Keanu-esque action hero  and the sexy PhD can save our species … with explosives. And there is much rejoicing — yea.

But is this vision true to reality? Should we assume that AI would adapt the same Will to Power sickness that has defined our species from Tutankhamen to Trump?

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Cheaper Energy Costs Blowing in the Wind

Bob Dylan was right: “The answer, my friend, is blowin’ in the wind.”

Wind energy costs are expected to fall by up to 30 percent in the next 15 years. That’s according to a freshly published paper in Nature Energy. 

A survey of 163 wind-power experts, the review offers a bullish outlook for renewable energy — a necessity is humanity is to create a cleaner, healthier society.

As the survey details: “Costs could be even lower: experts predict a 10% chance that reductions will be more than 40 percent by 2030 and more than 50 percent by 2050.”

The key components in making this happen will be public support and more advanced tech. Polls conducted by the Wind Energy Foundation show public support somewhere in the 60-70 percent range in various Western nations.

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