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Monthly Archives: July 2015

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We Can Shuttle Mind-Boggling Gobs of Data Worldwide in an Instant—But We Want More

“I have heard articulate speech produced by sunlight. I have heard a ray of the sun laugh and cough and sing.” – Alexander Graham Bell The speed of communication was once constrained by geography and...

Which Way Next? A New Singularity Hub Channel to (Re)Imagine the Future

Every moment is a crossroads. Every day we make countless seemingly unimportant decisions, which linked together over weeks, months and years make up the fabric of our lives. This is true from the micro...
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Is Bitcoin the Largest Ponzi Scheme of All Time? Find Out in the Latest Ask an Expert [Video]

People sure are abuzz about bitcoin — after all, it's not every day that a new currency pops on the scene. But the buzz has more to do with what you can do with bitcoin then...

The Artist Who’s Making Cybernetic Slime Mold Sing

Slime mold is fascinating. I like it for the same reason I like ant colonies—it’s made up of very simple (single-celled) creatures that collaborate when food is scarce to form a kind of collective...

How Stem Cells May Save Your Life—and Even Extend It

You are a collection of over 30 trillion human cells. Every one of these cells, those in your brain, lungs, liver, skin, and everywhere else, derives from a single pluripotent type of cell called a...

When Machines Can Do Most Jobs—Passion, Creativity, and Reinvention Rule

Not long ago, schoolchildren chose what they wanted to be when they grew up, and later selected the best college they could gain admission to, spent years gaining proficiency in their fields, and joined...

How Tiny Lab-Grown Human Brains Are Giving Big Insights Into Autism

First came lab-grown mini-hearts. Then came 3D printed skin. Now scientists have taken “body on a chip” to a whole new level. Starting with skin cells from patient biopsies, scientists transformed them back into stem...

This Week’s Awesome Stories from Around the Web (Through Jul 25)

ROBOTICS: Mother Robots Build Children Robots to Experiment With Artificial Evolution Evan Ackerman | IEEE Spectrum "Overall, 'a fitness increase of more than 40 percent over 10 generations was observed in all experiments,' which is pretty good,...

Combating Scarcity With Abundance: New Impact Challenge to Tackle California’s Drought

Have a big idea about how to use technology to tackle California’s drought? Applications are now open for the 2015 Singularity University Impact Challenge. The top three ideas will win $5,000, access to SU’s...

Watch This Swarm of Simple Robots Do Surprisingly Complex Things

Hero worship is deeply engrained in the human psyche. From King Arthur to Luke Skywalker, we long for an unlikely leader to arise, pull sword from stone (or ignite lightsaber), and heal the land. It’s...

Are MOOCs the ‘Digital Albums’ of Education? From Standard Education to ‘Marginal Learning’

“Once upon a time, there were physical CDs. The order of each song mattered, for the album was often played as an uninterrupted piece. Then came the computer and music became digital. You could...
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Episode 3 of Ask an Expert Now Online: Will Robots Take Our Jobs? [Video]

Ready or not, another episode Ask an Expert is already here...about as fast as robots are showing up in the workplace. This episode, in fact, is all about robots and how they will affect humans. Walking us through the implications of the...

As Nations Hack Each Other, Protecting Personal Information Must Become National Security Priority

The nation with the most powerful military in the world suffered a major strategic loss — and for several months not a single person even noticed. That’s because that attackers didn’t use traditional weapons...

GSP 2015 Closing Ceremony: Meet 20+ Startups With Revolution on the Brain

Join Singularity University August 20 at San Jose’s California Theatre for the 2015 Graduate Studies Program Closing Ceremony—a night of inspiration, impact, and exciting pitches for 20+ new startups aiming to tackle the world’s biggest challenges....

What the Next Generation Needs to Thrive in Exponential Times

How do you raise kids today during these exponential times? Should they learn a second language… in a world of instant translation? Should they ever memorize any fact… in a world of ubiquitous Google? Will college even...

How Technology Is Crash Landing in Our Public Schools

Do we have an adequate system for sorting through the ten thousand plus different educational technology materials and programs available for integration into our public school systems? No. In fact, we do not have a...

Should We Redesign Capitalism to Address Our Jobless Future?

“There are more net jobs in the world today than ever before, after hundreds of years of technological innovation and hundreds of years of people predicting the death of work. The logic on this...

Forget Rocket Fuel: This Spaceplane Will Use Microwave Beams to Reach Orbit

Over half a century after the dawn of the space age, getting to space remains an epic challenge. Twice this year, the first stage of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket met a fiery end...

Will Robocars Vastly Increase Battery Life?

We know electric cars are getting better and likely to get popular even when driven by humans. Tesla, at its core, is a battery technology company as much as it’s a car company, and...

This Week’s Awesome Stories from Around the Web (Through Jul 18)

ROBOTICS: Forces of nature: Biomimicry in robotics Stuart Nathan | The Engineer "For example, the processes – the combination of systems of sensors, muscles and brain – that allow a squid to control its tentacles are still...

Animal Brains Networked Into Organic Computer ‘Brainet’

Imagine a future where computers no longer run on silicon chips. The replacement? Brains. Thanks to two separate studies recently published in Scientific Reports, we may be edging towards that future. In a series of experiments,...
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Episode 2 of Ask an Expert is Out: Is the Age of Robocars Upon Us? [Video]

It's Thursday, which means it's time for another episode of Ask an Expert. In this video, we dive into the subject of autonomous vehicles and their impact on the future of transportation. Brad Templeton, Singularity...

Pluto First Contact Immortalized in Iconic Image on Instagram (How Else?)

Yesterday, as the New Horizons spacecraft rocketed past Pluto on its closest approach, NASA posted the best image of the dwarf planet yet. Where? On Instagram. In the almost decade since New Horizons left Earth,...

Why Entrepreneurs, Not Government, Drive Innovation

It's sad that the U.S. government doesn't fund risky research anymore. After all, "the day before something is truly a breakthrough, it's a crazy idea"… and if you're not funding crazy ideas, you're stuck with...

Can We Control Our Technological Destiny—Or Are We Just Along For the Ride?

“Man becomes, as it were, the sex organs of the machine world…” – Marshall McLuhan A standard assumption of technological progress is that new innovations are born in our mind, and we humans choose which of...

This Week’s Awesome Stories from Around the Web (Through Jul 11)

ROBOTICS: Robots Can’t Kill You—and Claiming They Can is Dangerous Ron Chrisley | Gizmodo "Since robots don’t have responsibility, humans are the ones responsible for what robots do. However, as robots become more prevalent, it will increasingly appear as...

How the Brain Makes Memories: Scientists Tap Memory’s Neural Code

Some of our most treasured memories begin with a simple association: the smiling face of that special someone, tied forever to the place where you first met. Sadly, these episodic memories — memories that encode...
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Watch Episode 1 of Ask an Expert, the New Web Series from Singularity University

Last week, we told you about a new web series called Ask an Expert. Well, Episode 1 is finally here and it's all about ENERGY! In its debut, questions about energy that were tweeted to @singularityu with...
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How Will We Meet the Energy Demands of the Coming Megacities?

Odds are you live in a city. In fact, more than half the world today lives in cities and by 2050, it's expected that two-thirds of the world will be residing in cities. While smaller cities struggle to modernize to...

It’s No Myth: Robots and Artificial Intelligence Will Erase Jobs in Nearly Every Industry

With the unemployment rate falling to 5.3 percent, the lowest in seven years, policy makers are heaving a sigh of relief. Indeed, with the technology boom in progress, there is a lot to be...

Extreme Wealth Should Be Transformed Into Global Impact—Here’s How

With immense respect to Bill Gates and Warren Buffett, I'd like to suggest an alternative to the giving pledge…an "impact pledge." Specifically, a pledge where philanthropists actually pledge to solve (i.e., eradicate, eliminate, exterminate) a...
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Digitizing Surgery: How New Technologies Will Transform Old Medical Practices [Video]

From one point of view, surgery is a fairly barbaric means of improving your health. After all, your body is cut open, organs are moved around or removed, and doctors probe with their fingers and use instruments...

This Week’s Awesome Stories from Around the Web (Through Jul 4)

ROBOTICS: Our Robot Overlords Aren’t Quite Ready For Us — Yet Caroline O'Donovan | BuzzFeed "The issue is that robots are really good at doing the same thing over and over again, but when a task calls...
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Watch the Complete Evolution of the Terminator’s Killer Robots

Many movies, books, and TV shows predict an AI and robot apocalypse. But which one first pops into your mind when you hear killer robots? We’ll wager it’s the Terminator. From its inception in 1984,...

Three Futuristic Mars Machines That Aren’t Rovers

Human exploration of Mars dates back to the beginning of the space age. Our first machine emissaries buzzed the Red Planet in the 1960s, and the first landers touched down in the next decade. The...
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Ask an Expert, a New Web Series from Singularity University with Answers about the Future of Tech

Do you have a burning question about emerging technologies and how they're shaping the world? Maybe you're curious about when bitcoin will be accepted everywhere or when nanobots will be repairing your body from the inside out. Or...

Will These Giant Robots Do Battle? American MegaBot Challenges Japan’s Kuratas Mecha

Two proud countries, two extraordinary warriors…one title. Just like Rocky IV. Only instead of Sly and Dolph, substitute a 15-foot, 6-ton American robot going toe-to-toe with a 12.5-foot, 5-ton Japanese mecha. In a YouTube...

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