It has been rather depressing to watch people get exactly what they want. In South Africa in March, people begged to "be lead" through the COVID crisis - and they were. Crop-bottom pant regulations, arbitrary prohibition and all. They are now number three on the global misery index. In the UK, people demanded schools were shut down - … Continue reading Be careful what you beg for
Money gets surreal when it becomes untethered from reality; and a lot of strange financial wizardry began decoupling real value and nominal financial money in and around the 1970's. The website wfthappendin1978.com tells the story in pictures, in a series of economic charts that illustrate better than a thousand essays would, what happens when the rules … Continue reading WTF Happened in the 1970s?
From my perspective, all the many trends that I track are linked in one way or a another to four overarching, civilisation-level, end-game "meta trends". Of course, all four of these meta trends are themselves interlinked and interactive, and can be envisaged as four oscillating cyclical waves that pull together, pull apart and underwrite the … Continue reading Meta Trends and Far Future Visions
If you are a futurist, you should be watching the sex industry. The world's oldest industry is full of shiny new ideas and quick to adopt new trends and technologies. It's also very flexible. (Puns all fully intended). I wrote in more detail about this subject here. Enjoy.
Postalgia is a term used by science fiction writer William Gibson to explain the future fatigue plaguing contemporary culture. Postalgia is a hankering after the present; as opposed to nostalgia, which is a hankering after the past. Postalgia is the sense that things right now are as good as they will ever get. It is … Continue reading Postalgia / Prostalgia – Is this as Good as it Gets?
"Your iPhone is all that is left of your once limitless future" ~ Eric Weinstein There is a difference between volatility and dynamism. There is a difference between invention and innovation. There is a difference between technological adoption and technological disruption. There is a difference between technology that accelerates and (re)distributes that future, and technology … Continue reading Volatility is not Dynamism
Are patents still a useful invention to carry forward into the future? Unaffordable price increases in the medical industry (where patent hoarding is a common practice where well-funded firms stock up on pre-emptive patents - i.e. patents for hypothetical future medtech innovations, new drugs, and medical devices) indicate that abuse of patents might be part … Continue reading Have patents outlived their usefulness?
Quentin Tarantino's Once Upon a Time in Hollywood - based, of course (loosely) on the infamous, real-life story of the Manson Family's murder of Sharon Tait and her friends story gives us a glimpse of the dark side of happy hippie culture - and how counter-culture-culture can turn into a cult. Recently, I was asked to co-author … Continue reading On cults, climate and culture
At the end of last year, I was asked to write a few thoughts on the most important, most disruptive technological milestones for each year of the last decade that will continue to have an impact in the future of the decade to come. Here follows the original version of that article, before it was edited … Continue reading Trend retrospective, a decade in the rearview mirror
One of the big trends and socio-economic trajectories I'm focused on right now is the concept of how life is becoming untethered from reality. I'm not just talking about virtual / augmented reality and literal virtual escapism; and fake news and deep fakes either (although that's indeed an important part of it), rather I'm talking … Continue reading Nothing is real, everything is possible