Nine Tough Questions 1

The Warsaw School of Economics is the oldest, most prestigious, and top-ranked business school in Poland. Dr. Piotr Turek received his PhD in Economics there and went on to become a fellow futurist and new media expert in Warsaw where he works as a journalist, lecturer and mobile/web services expert. In early January, Piotr contacted me and asked if he could interview me for a series of publicatio…Read More

Future of Cruise Industry 3

My wife Deb and I recently got back from a 10-day Princess Cruise through the Panama Canal, a fabulous experience, but one that could have been greatly enhanced with better technology on the part of the cruise line. To illustrate this point, on the 2nd day of the cruise we ran into some people who thought it would be great if I could give a talk on the ship. So I sent a message to Susan the cruise…Read More

Fixing-Sales-Tax-4

At a recent visit to our local hairdresser, my wife and I were informed by the enterprising young lady that she was no longer selling her line of retail hair products. Filling out the monthly sales tax reports had simply become too onerous, and the profits too small to justify the time. This was not the first time I’d heard of someone “throwing in the towel” on their plans for selling produc…Read More

Futurist-Hall-of-Fame-1af

Over the coming months the DaVinci Institute will be unveiling the world’s first Futurist Hall of Fame. As with other “hall of fame” efforts, this one will be dedicated to drawing attention to those who have contributed the most to our thinking about the future. To be sure, the first iteration of this Hall of Fame will be meager. It will be a hall with photos and videos not sculptures, homeg…Read More

Super-Scalability-1

It was a monumental event that no one noticed. Just before 1800 the number of people on earth had climbed to what was then believed to be an astronomically large number – 1 billion. While this was indeed a landmark event, the occasion passed without fanfare. The combination of too few demographers and disjointed communications between countries caused the entire planet to miss the occasion. Unti…Read More

Man-vs-machine-11

Will humans soon be battling for their survival against robots? Even though this has become a favorite Hollywood theme, the likelihood of that happening is nearly zero. Yes, we will have many clashes with human-controlled robots doing battle with other humans or human-controlled robots, but not without people in the background. The age-old idea of man vs. machine is far more nuanced and complicate…Read More

Social-Media-Polarization-1

Wael Ghonim was a young computer engineer working for Google in Egypt when he became a central figure in the events leading up to the Arab Spring in 2011. In early 2011, Wael created a Facebook page titled, “A Revolution against Corruption, Injustice and Dictatorship,” and the number of followers quickly mushroomed. On Jan 14th he posed a question to the 300,000 followers of the page:…Read More

Thousand-Income-Lifestyle-4L

In his famous poem, William Shakespeare begins with the lines, “All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players.” But what if that were true in more than just an allegorical sense? No, I’m not talking about the philosophical underpinnings of divine intervention or manifest destiny. Rather, what if we found ourselves caught up inside an actual “game-of-life” game…Read More

Ignorance-7

In 1901, Dr. Duncan MacDougall set out to discover if the human soul weighed anything. Working in the local old age home, he conducted a series of experiments where he weighed six patients on a precision scale both before and after they breathed their last breath. Comparing variations in the patient’s weight, he declared his findings, that the human soul weighed, on average, 21 grams. To undersc…Read More

Future-Skills-2

In the early 1990s, psychologist Robin Dunbar studied the social connections within groups of monkeys and apes. He theorized that the maximum size of their overall social group was limited by the size of their neocortex. Based on our neocortex size, Dunbar calculated that humans should be able to maintain relationships of no more than roughly 150 people at a time. He also found that many businesse…Read More