Much of last night was a pleasant blur. The Xerps and Evil Genius parties were the best by far.
The Next 50 Years – Tom Easton, John Cramer, Greg Benford, Larry Niven – Tom suggests that the poor record of predicting the last 50 years doesn’t bode well for predicting the next 50 years. Tom suggests that surveillance will become increasingly prevalent, Brin’s idea of the transparent society. Also, the acceleration of an arms race between privacy and transparency.
Regarding the singularity, not a lot of buy in amongst the panelists. Quantum computing will even more greatly accelerate computing evolution. Benford suggests that humans will eventually have to take control of the planet’s ecology in order to survive. Earth will be the first planet to be terraformed.
Easton asks about the discovery of the carrier particle for gravity and suggests it as a possible physics advancement in the next 50 years. He also brought up the fellow who grew a replacement jawbone under the skin of his back and that he’s the harbinger of the future.
Benford suggests that the next 50 might bring about near universal or universal prosperity and that this wealth of wealthy could be a problem.
He suggests that bored people bicker. The audience brings up the graying of the earth’s population. One thing that won’t occur, the end of ingenuity (predicted by another audience member (roundly disputed)).