I’ve spent almost a month in Egypt and can tell you that what I saw was a divide between the rich and poor, corruption, and poverty. As the picture on this page shows of me in Cairo standing in the middle of garbage, something common all over the city, things have got to change. However I also saw the rise of the internet and cell phone use.
Looking ahead to the middle of this century, will the United States still be the world’s dominant superpower? Could China reach parity with the US, or even achieve superiority? Or might we see a wide open multi-polar world with no major controlling powers?
Asked when, if ever, a robot would deserve ‘human’ rights, respondents to a recently concluded poll of our readers showed dissatisfaction with the range of answers we offered. Almost 22% gave their own answers, and another 10% said they weren’t sure.
It can’t be. Even a so-called “identical twin” is not an identical twin. Even if one’s DNA is the same as another person, as with identical twins, there are differences in terms of when particular genes within that DNA are turned on and off.
This animation was adapted from a talk given at the RSA (Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce) by Sir Ken Robinson, world-renowned education and creativity expert and recipient of the RSA’s Benjamin Franklin award.
Sascha Vongehr is a postdoctoral researcher affiliated with the National Laboratory of Solid State Microstructures and the Philosophy Department of Nanjing University. This is his first article for the IEET.
The U.S. scientific community has long led the world in research on such areas as public health, environmental science, and issues affecting quality of life. Our scientists have produced landmark studies on the dangers of DDT, tobacco smoke, acid rain, and global warming. But at the same time, a small yet potent subset of this community leads the world in vehement denial of these dangers. Oreskes documents the misuse of science, driven by free-market fundamentalist ideology, to mislead the public on matters ranging from the risks of smoking to the reality of global warming. The people the authors accuse in this carefully documented book are themselves scientistsâ€”mostly physicists, former cold warriors who now serve a conservative agenda, and vested interests like the tobacco industry.
Neil deGrasse Tyson earned his BA in Physics from Harvard and his PhD in Astrophysics from Columbia. He is the first occupant of the Frederick P. Rose Directorship of the Hayden Planetarium. His professional research interests are broad, but include star formation, exploding stars, dwarf galaxies, and the structure of our Milky Way. In this video he is asked, “What advice would you give to NASA?”
Dr. J. chats with David Eagleman, a fellow of the IEET and director of the Laboratory for Perception and Action and the Initiative on Neuroscience and Law at Baylor College of Medicine. Eagleman is author of the bestseller Sum, on fictional afterlives, Wednesday is Indigo Blue, about synaesthesia, the e-book Why the Net Matters and the forthcoming Incognito: The Brains Behind the Mind. They discuss the thesis David outlined for the Long Now Foundation that the Internet makes our civilization more resilient than previous ones.
All in all, the latest wave of globalization has increased human welfare, helping lift hundreds of millions of people from pre-industrial poverty levels into comparatively much better lives. But, leaving aside its often poorly managed disruptive side effects, globalization is also a symptom of the relative technological slowdown of the last few decades.
Physics might be considered the most fundamental of all sciences, for all other sciences derive from basic principles of forces, motion, electromagnetism and thermodynamics. And yet, physical laws are mathematical models of the world; however, mathematics itself is abstract, deriving from theoretical constructs of philosophy. But, philosophy arises out of theories of mind, or psychology. The mind itself depends upon the biology of the brain….which is nothing but chemical reactions of molecules, such as neurotransmitters and proteins. And of course, chemistry depends upon the behavior of atoms and forces, which is constrained by physics…..
Joel E. Cohen is a mathematical biologist and Professor of Populations at Rockefeller and Columbia Universities. He projects that by 2050 there will be about 9 billion people in the world. The vast majority of them will live in urban areas, and will have a significantly higher average age than people today.
Technology is evolving us, says Amber Case, as we become a screen-staring, button-clicking new version of homo sapiens. We now rely on “external brains” (cell phones and computers) to communicate, remember, even live out secondary lives. But will these machines ultimately connect or conquer us? Case offers surprising insight into our cyborg selves.
While thoughtful folks point to recent, tragic events in Arizona, appealing for Americans to tone down the horrifically polarized rhetoric of recent years, we all can see the opposite going on. It seems that we have entered what Robert Heinlein forecast as “The Crazy Years.”
Looking ahead to 2050, Glenn Roberts, a farmer and owner of Anson Mills, says the ethical responsibility to grow and preserve and sustain land-raised systems will survive, and local, land-raised cuisines will return and thrive.