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Foresight Update 23.31: Saving the Earth by leaving it - July 30, 2009

Discuss these news stories at http://foresight.org/nanodot and http://www.opensourcesensing.org/blog.

Top News of the Week

Saving the Planet

…Are we going to have to pave over the Earth after all? I can see but one solution that really works, in the long run: get them off the Earth. And by them of course I mean us all, or all but a few percent.

There is billions of times more energy available in space than on Earth — and energy is the basis of wealth…

In this issue:

From Open Source Sensing:

Foresight Events – Lectures
Foreseeing Future Technologies - Join Foresight
More Events
Contact Foresight

Solar Sailing

So suppose we get into space — by space pier, new private launch capabilities, or whatever. Then what? LEO is halfway to anywhere, but only halfway.

Unlike the Earth, which is matter rich but energy poor, the inner solar system is the opposite — energy rich but not much matter. This ought to be a recipe for going fast…

AI and space travel

It's really amazing that Armstrong and Aldrin actually landed on the Moon. Not that they survived the trip in the huge rocket, nor the rigors of space travel, the radiation, the vacuum, the meteors.

It was the software…

Foreseeing the next paradigm shift

The evolution of science moves, in Kuhn's famous theory, not in a smooth accretion of knowledge but in a series of punctuated equilibria. This means that before a paradigm shift happens, there is an overhang where the majority of scientists believe something that the majority won't a scientific generation later…

CCC / CRA Robotics Roadmap

The CCC/CRA, a consortium of academic computer science departments (essentially), has a roadmap to future robotics that has some implications for the Feynman Path.

Some highlights (from the chapter on manufacturing)…

—Nanodot posts by J. Storrs Hall

From Open Source Sensing:

Quick intro to Ubiquitous Sensor Networks

For a 25-minute slide-show-and-lecture intro to this topic from an industry perspective, check out Ubiquitous Sensor Networks: The benefits of smart dust and mesh technology by Joy Weiss of Dust Networks. Her presentation helps get across why these systems are arriving so fast…

Tracking the sensor revolution, for big bucks or for free

Tracking what's happening with sensors today is an intimidating task. If you have US$2700 you can get a big report on Wireless Sensor Networks from Bharat Book Bureau, which appears to be based in India. If you don't have this amount to spare, you can get a feel for what's happening by just reading the long ad for the report, including the detailed table of contents…

—Open Source Sensing posts by Christine Peterson

Foresight Events – Lectures

Foresight Lectures

August 20-22, 2009
Gnomedex: a technology conference of inspiration and influence
Seattle, Washington
Christine Peterson will speak on life extension.
Click here for conference details

Foreseeing Future Technologies

Advancements in technologies such as nanotech, robotics, and biotech are promising to make major differences in our lives in the not-too-distant future, as the Industrial Revolution did to the agrarian world — to do for the physical world what the computer and Internet have done to the world of information.

Since 1986, the Foresight Institute has been in the forefront of a worldwide community of visionaries who work to help shape these possibilities into a positive, beneficial reality. If you would like to help us understand the potential of these technologies, and influence their direction, please consider becoming a member of the Foresight community. With your support, Foresight will continue to educate the general public on these technologies and what they will mean to our society.

To join:
http://foresight.org/members/index.html

More Events

Converging Technologies for 21st Century Security
Organized by the Institute of Nanotechnology
November 25, 2009
The Royal College of Physicians, London, UK

Organised crime, terrorism, civil conflict, and natural disasters are sadly commonplace in global society and have developed increasingly complex dimensions. To counter such threats, civil security and emergency response teams are looking towards new technologies that offer more sensitive, rapid, and accurate detection methods; that provide the means to neutralise or effectively deal with the outcomes of such incidents; and that provide greater protection to personnel.

NanoManufacturing Conference & Exhibits
Looking to understand what nanotechnology means for you?
April 14, 2010 to April 15, 2010
Hilton Phoenix East/Mesa, Mesa AZ USA

Call for Speakers, Abstract deadline: October 7, 2009

This conference will highlight the current, near-term, and future applications of nanotechnology and how they are transforming the way we manufacture products. Peer networking, information sharing, and technology exchange among the world's nanomanufacturing leaders will be a key feature of the event.

Contact Foresight

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