Archive: Business & Economy

May 1st, 2013 | By Glen Hiemstra | Posted in Art & Society, Business & Economy, Environment & Energy, Innovation, New at Futurist.com, Science & Tech | Comments Off

Fast Co.Exist welcomes Glen to their Futurist Forum

FastCo Futurists

I was pleased this spring to join 5 other leading futurists as resident advisers on the future for Fast Company and their online endeavor FastCo Exist. We are called The Futurist Forum and our task is to imagine the future. The image above is a page from the May 2013 edition of Fast Company Magazine introducing the 6 experts to the magazine’s readers.

We each will be contributing articles periodically and participating in webcasts and online conversations. You can find my initial piece here, on the future of transportation. I highlight the prospects for solar roadways and a magnetic induction system for buses from the Wave company.

Check out the other’s in this forum, as they have very interesting things to say.

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April 16th, 2013 | By Mallory Smith | Posted in Art & Society, Business & Economy, Environment & Energy, Science & Tech, Space | 5 Comments

Top 10 Future Careers: 2050 and 2100

iStock_000005407395LargeIn 2001 Glen wrote a blog called Top 10 Future Careers.  Now here’s what we’re thinking about future employment.

Popular Careers in 2050:

• Dental Hygienist
• Human Resources Specialist
• Pharmacist
• Biotechnology Salesman
• Biomedical Engineer
• Entrepreneur
• Programmer/Software Developer
• Network and Computer Systems Administrator
• Lawyer
• Nuclear and Solar Power Engineer

Popular Careers in 2100:

• Gene Programmer
• Food Engineer
• Bioengineer
• Brain Augmenter
• Weather Controller
• Spaceport Traffic Control
• Human-related Spacecraft Maintenance
• Nature Conservationist
• Ethics Lawyer- for memory augmentation, genetic programming, etc.
• Domestic Robot Programmer

What do you think jobs will look like in 2050 or 2100? Let us know in the comments.

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January 2nd, 2013 | By Mallory Smith | Posted in Art & Society, Business & Economy, Innovation, Science & Tech | Comments Off

Starting the New Year off right with Arthur C. Clarke

“The only thing we can be sure of about the future is that it will be absolutely fantastic.” -Arthur C. Clarke

In 1964 Arthur C. Clarke made some wild assumptions about the future in  this clip below from BBC’s Horizon programme.

In this clip Clarke barely touches on the future of communication and its effect on cities, “The traditional role of the city as a meeting point for man will have ceased to make any sense—men will no longer commute, they will communicate.”

Interested in hearing more accurate predictions from Clarke? Watch the full version of this episode, parts 1 & 2, below.


And just for fun check out Clarke’s 2008 discussion about the Space Elevator.

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December 13th, 2012 | By Mallory Smith | Posted in Art & Society, Business & Economy, Environment & Energy, Innovation | Comments Off

Women: Spend consciously this holiday season, you’re in control of what gets sold in the first place

Women have enormous purchasing power, which is expected to reach $28 trillion by 2020, according to BCG. Why, then, do we continue to purchase products that are harmful to us and the environment? Why do we buy from companies that are only interested in money, and not the  well-being  of the people they are serving?

Perhaps it’s because 91% of women surveyed believe that advertisers do not understand them. Maybe we  are not  hearing about any products that we can truly get behind, so we just buy from the limited list of what’s available. Well, that won’t work much longer. If we want to see a better world, full of healthy people and conscious products, we need to buy products that reflect those qualities. We can only make a real change if we determine what’s getting sold, rather than just buying what’s out there because we think it’s the only option. It’s not!

There are many problems in the world that can be solved by showing marketers that you don’t want to be a part of the status quo anymore.   Talk to your friends and neighbors about what they are buying and who they are buying from; start a conversation in your community.

In addition to getting your voice heard, focus on buying from companies that would seriously listen to you as the consumer. Buy from companies whose mission statements include creating a safe, healthy society through eco-friendly practices. Nike, Johnson & Johnson, and Dell have all been praised for their sustainable practices, and Toms Shoes, Seventh Generation, and Project 7 all sell products with a social mission in mind.

Some say that “citizens’ real source of power to make change on the scale we need is through transforming the policies, business practices and structural context in which production and consumption happen.” This means lobbying for taxes on junk food, and tax incentives for green products.

And then there’s focusing on what you’re buying now. This holiday season is a great time to reflect on what you’re buying.  The National Retailers Federation forecast that during this time of the year 586.1 billion dollars will be spent on gifts. This is a perfect opportunity to be conscious of what you buy. For instance, you could buy fewer toys, since they will inevitably just end up in landfills or the ocean, and instead buy gifts that promote activity and encourage social experiences. And remember a gift doesn’t have to be physical- you can simply promise to babysit someone’s kids twice that month, which is a great gift for the parents and a fun, new social experience for the children.

The bottom line is, we are capable of changing what is getting sold to the public, but we must be conscious buyers and get active about supporting companies whose mission aligns with our own.

 

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November 25th, 2012 | By Mallory Smith | Posted in Art & Society, Business & Economy, Environment & Energy | Comments Off

Living Without Technology

What if, in some post-apocalyptic world, technology is lost or corrupted and we have to live without it? Here are 10 things you should know how to do without technology:

1) Basic self-defense.

Stay in shape. Lifehacker tells you all the most detrimental places to hit a person and gives demonstrations on some basic self-defense moves that everyone should know. Watch videos on the best ways to maximize damage: Leverage your weight, use everyday objects, and use your elbows, knees, and head. And as always, heed these special instructions in case of a zombie apocalypse.

2) Tend to wounds.

Check out the best ways to dress a wound and learn how to perform CPR on various types of people.

3) Make fire.

According to the U.S. Army Survival Manual, a fire can provide both physical and psychological comfort and security.” Besides the obvious uses of fire: warmth that prevents cold-related injuries, cooking, and signaling rescuers; fire can also purify water, sterilize bandages, and make tools and weapons.

Read about 7 different ways to start a fire here or watch Bear Grylls make a fire with friction.

6) Find Shelter.

This could mean learning to make a lean-to that protects you from the elements, or finding a hat that shelters your face from the sun.

5) Identify edible materials in nature.

Find out which plants, bugs, and mushrooms you can eat without harming yourself.

6) Stay safe during natural disasters.

Learn what to do in case of a hurricane, tornado, lightning storm, forest fire, flood, blizzard, earthquake and in an ocean wave.

7) Find clean drinking water.

Learn what to look for in clean drinking water and what to expect in certain areas.

8) Learn to cook.

In case of emergencies it’s always good to know less conventional cooking methods like rock oven baking and pit cooking.

9) Signal for a rescue.

From fire to shiny objects to Morse code. This list gives you every method of signaling for help you could ever think of.

10) Build weapons.

Watch this series of videos on how to make primitive weapons, like spears.

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