Filtered by author: Doug Vining

Predictions for the coming decade
Posted: 16 January 2017

Eric Schmidt shares his predictions for the future in this concise and well-articulated video.
(Updated with new video link) ...

Complete story...
The demise of oil
Posted: 23 June 2017

Will demand for oil continue to rise indefinitely, or will exponential technologies hasten a peak in demand, and a shift to alternative fuel and energy sources? Bloomberg gives us a view of what the demise of oil could look like.

Complete story...
This Is What The Demise of Oil Looks Like
23 June 2017
Seismic shifts in technology and policy could slow demand growth
The stone age didn't end because we ran out of stones
Dateline: 20 January 2021
Back in the day, when horse drawn carriages and buggies were the preferred mode of transport for anyone, there was a big fear in Paris, London and New York ...
Eric Schmidt is optimistic about the future
Posted: 23 June 2017

'Eric Schmidt, executive chairman of Alphabet Inc (Google’s parent company), is optimistic about the future. “We’re entering what I call the age of abundance,” he says. “And during the age of abundance, we’re going to see a new age … the age of intelligence.

“By 2020, most human beings will have access to the internet. When you have everyone harnessed with this information, the world gets more ...

Complete story...
Google's Eric Schmidt: We need critical thinking now more than ever
23 June 2017
The Alphabet boss says the world is entering an age of abundance, driven by artificial intelligence and machine learning
Free cross-border payments with blockchain
Posted: 21 June 2017

Circle is now a payments company that doesn’t make money from payments. Using blockchain technology, Circle has launched a fee-free ethereum-powered cross-border person-to-person payments capability.

That sounds like a mouthful, and it is, but it's exactly the sort of development that we 'predicted' in our MindBullet from last year! When will banks wise up? ...

Complete story...
Circle Launched Free Cross-Border Payments on Blockchain — When Will FIs Follow?
21 June 2017
Person-to-person payments have gained traction among banks and other financial institutions recently. Many of the incumbents, like Bank of America, Wells ...
Say goodbye to forex spreads and broker commission
Dateline: 27 July 2019
The new Blockchain Equitable Spread Trading system or BEST has banks and brokers in a tizzy. They've effectively been disintermediated, which is probably ...
China's sharing economy
Posted: 20 June 2017

Sharing cars, bikes, power banks, basketballs, even umbrellas - China's sharing economy is going crazy!

Complete story...
China’s sharing economy charges, pedals and bounces into overdrive
20 June 2017
30 bike-sharing apps launched already, with a dozen players fighting it out in the smartphone power bank sharing market, and six more dedicated solely to ...
There are 29 million bicycles in Beijing - and that's a problem
Dateline: 29 October 2019
The craze for 'dockless' share bikes in China and elsewhere soon led to a massive problem; piles of discarded bikes all over big cities, clogging up ...
Stratolaunch megaplane for orbital rocket launches
Posted: 20 June 2017

We've been saying for years that space is the next big business frontier, and Elon Musk has been dominating the news in that area. But another entrepreneur, Paul Allen, has been behind building the world's biggest plane to launch space rockets from the stratosphere into orbit. After four years it has emerged from its hanger for testing and could demonstrate launch capability by 2019. Will ...

Complete story...
Meet the Stratolaunch Megaplane Taking Satellites Into Orbit
20 June 2017
Microsoft cofounder Paul Allen rolls out the Stratolaunch, a 385 ft. plane designed to carry satellites into low Earth orbit.
Space tourism and satellite launches compete for profits
Dateline: 27 September 2015
The race to launch a successful private space business has been won - and the victor, surprisingly, is not Virgin's Sir Richard Branson, but a 40-year-old ...
Hacking the grid
Posted: 13 June 2017

We have published a number of MindBullets over the years, that examine the potential for cyber criminals or hackers to damage or destroy physical infrastructure, like the power grid. It seems the Russians or someone may have tested this capability against the Ukraine last year, with powerful malware known as 'Crash override' or 'Industroyer'. Remember Stuxnet? This is a lot scarier!

Complete story...
Meet Industroyer - malware that can bring down a city's power grid -
13 June 2017
Researchers at ESET believe that Industroyer may have been responsible for shutting down power in the Ukraine last year.
It's the most dangerous malware ever developed, and it's available free to anyone
Dateline: 2 January 2013
During 2011 the Stuxnet worm targeted Iran's Natanz nuclear facility, specifically the Siemens components in it, and several other key industrial ...
Elon defends his boring tunnels
Posted: 8 June 2017

In this TED interview, Elon Musk defends his boring idea, saying that they will make tunneling so much cheaper that there could be an 'arbitrary' number of tunnels to absorb any level of demand. He also has some interesting views of the future.

Complete story...
Tesla Tunnels aren't boring, they're totally congested
Dateline: 7 June 2027
Since Elon Musk's Boring Company provided automated underground highways to move traffic underground, it's been wonderful to walk the streets again. The high street has become more like a pedestrian mall, and the occasional, electric, car that passes is quiet and discreet. Electric cars quickly get swallowed up by the new Tesla Tunnels, or TT, that permeate the city links; the airport and ...
When solar goes viral
Posted: 7 June 2017

When consumers are buying solar panels, at an outdoor market, in Mongolia, or Angola for that matter, then you know solar power is going viral. The future of the power utility as a monolithic entity, often controlled by the state, with power consumers that are dependent on it for affordable energy, is an industrial era idea that simply won't work in the future.

Complete story...
'Spectacular' drop in renewable energy costs leads to record global boost
7 June 2017
Falling solar and wind prices have led to new power deals across the world despite investment in renewables falling
Rooftop, backyard and portable solar is the new meme
Dateline: 15 March 2022
The biggest energy revolution in 150 years has arrived gradually, then suddenly. Now it's here. Personal solar power has displaced central utilities ...
Politics cannot save coal in the future
Posted: 22 May 2017 1 Comment

Whether you believe in climate change or not, it's abundantly apparent that coal as a primary energy source has a limited future. Globally, it will still take many years for alternative technologies to supplant coal, but as we can see happening in the United States, the economics of cleaner alternatives will make coal-fired power simply obsolete. In 2017 alone, 8 coal power stations have ...

Complete story...
In 2017 alone, enough US coal-fired plants have announced closures to power all of Qatar
22 May 2017
Trump's coal magic has worked—but not in the way his voters had hoped.
Nano solar films bring cheap energy to sunshine states
Dateline: 5 May 2018
It's hard to believe that a mere decade ago fossil fuels were at a premium, and everyone talked of 'peak oil' and the high prices of natural gas and coal. ...
Chemical energy on demand
Posted: 22 May 2017

Here's another energy invention that promises to change the game. Australian researchers have built a reference model of a chemical loop energy system which essentially uses natural gas or electricity to 'charge' chemical particles in a reactor vessel. When that mixture is allowed to oxidise it releases heat, which can drive a turbine and heat water. They are not saying what chemicals they ...

Complete story...
The revolutionary redox system that produces and stores energy in the home
22 May 2017
Imagine having a fridge-sized box in your home that generates and stores electricity, heats and cools the house, provides hot water and churns out oxygen ...
New energy storage system saves summer's heat for winter's chill
Dateline: 25 January 2021
We humans like our comforts, and temperature is one of the most important. In summer, we want our homes and offices to be pleasantly cool, and warm and ...
Google Lens is AI for cameras
Posted: 22 May 2017

Google's new app for cameras, Lens, is designed to let a connected camera, like the one in your smartphone, to understand the image and find related information about it. It's like Shazam for pictures. And although the demos were for identifying flowers and reading signs, you can be sure that it will also work for identifying people you meet. I can just imagine the scenarios that might ...

Complete story...
Google Lens will let smartphone cameras understand what they see and take action
22 May 2017
At Google's I/O developer conference, CEO Sundar Pichai announced a new technology called Google Lens. The idea with the product is to leverage Google's..
With Google Screen you get more than just television, broadband and games
Dateline: 26 August 2015
Google has launched its pay TV service, with regular television channels on a broadband connection. But unlike 'on demand' services, this is an entirely ...
Fake blood means no donors required
Posted: 19 May 2017

Well, it's not really fake - it's blood cultured in a lab from your own stem cells. Why go to all the trouble and expense of getting blood safely donated when you can "grow your own"? Biotech advances will revolutionise healthcare and extend human longevity. The future potential is amazing.

Complete story...
Stem-cell research a step closer to making blood donation redundant
19 May 2017
Two different teams have managed to train stem cells to replenish a mouse’s blood supply.
Artificial blood saves earthquake victims
Dateline: 17 April 2021
"We're out of blood," was the chilling statement released by Sichuan University School of Medicine in Chengdu. 4,700 people were left homeless following ...
Battle in the clouds
Posted: 18 May 2017

Google's announcement of new hardware for sale is interesting - because you can only buy it as a service. The second generation of Google's TPU chip is optimized for machine learning jobs, and is available as an option to users of Google's Cloud Platform. As a cloud provider, Google is currently running third behind Amazon and Microsoft, but they definitely want to improve on that position. ...

Complete story...
Google unveils next-gen TPUs to both train and run machine learning models
18 May 2017
At Google I/O, CEO Sundar Pichai said Google's high-power chips should make Google Cloud Platform the best public cloud for machine learning.
Neuralink will open the door to the Matrix
Posted: 12 May 2017

Elon Musk's new company Neuralink has the ambition to create a whole-brain digital interface, so that you can communicate with people and computers just with your thoughts - pure thoughts undistorted by language or descriptions. Imagine if you could install a 'wizard hat' on your brain that made the cloud completely accessible at the speed of thought, on demand. Pretty scary stuff, but pretty ...

Complete story...
Elon Musk’s Neuralink wants to turn cloud-based AI into an extension of our brains
12 May 2017
Elon Musk has been working on a Neuralink, a human-computer brain interface company, in whatever spare moments he has between running Tesla and also ...
Now you can upload new skills to your brain
Dateline: 10 April 2029
Need a new skill or ability? There's an app for that! Neuroscience and neuroprosthetics have advanced to the point where, if you need to learn Arabic in a ...
SpaceX heads for cyberspace
Posted: 5 May 2017

Will thousands of internet satellites plug the digital divide in under-served areas, or will fibre and terrestrial wireless make the satellites too slow, and obsolete by the time they've launched? It's a gamble, but I think Elon Musk has a good idea - a mesh network of satellites close enough to earth to keep response times quick and cover huge areas currently not connected. It could be a ...

Complete story...
SpaceX will start launching more than 4,000 broadband internet satellites in 2019
5 May 2017
Potentially ideal for people currently residing in rural areas of the world, SpaceX is moving forward with launching a mesh network of satellites that will ...
Upstart satellite operator creates bandwidth flood
Dateline: 15 May 2011
The Google-funded satellite communications company O3b has transformed the cost of internet access in all those hard-to-reach places, by launching dozens ...
Fusion energy UK
Posted: 28 April 2017 1 Comment

A private company has turned on their latest attempt at delivering nett energy from a fusion reactor, in the UK:

Speaking after the ST40 reactor was officially turned on and achieved “first plasma”, Tokamak Energy chief executive Dr David Kingham said: “Today is an important day for fusion energy development in the UK, and the world.
“We are unveiling the first world-class controlled fusion ...

Complete story...
UK reactor takes first steps towards fusion - News for the Oil and Gas Sector
28 April 2017
Britain’s newest fusion reactor has been fired up and taken the UK one step further towards generating electricity from the power of the stars. The heart ...
Power from nuclear fusion is forever beyond our grasp
Dateline: 12 May 2026
The greatest nuclear fusion experiment, ITER, has been mothballed barely a year after being switched on. "It's unlikely we'll ever achieve ignition," said ...
Saying goodbye to fake news
Posted: 26 April 2017

Is this the end of fake news, or is it the beginning or something much worse: sanitized news, approved by those who want to control what we see, hear and consume, perhaps even think?

Complete story...
Google Rewrites Its Powerful Search Rankings to Bury Fake News
26 April 2017
Google isn’t planning to rid fake news from its search results -- but it’s trying to purge it from the top.
'Pants-on-fire' detector comes to the rescue
Dateline: 29 May 2021
The Internet and globalization brought hordes of information with it, but unfortunately no easy way of verifying the truth or validity of all those search ...
Solar fuel and clean air
Posted: 26 April 2017

Solar power works, but it's not very efficient, mainly because it only uses a small part of the sun's light spectrum, mainly UV. What if we could make a photo-reactor that used visible light to generate chemicals? That's what a chemistry professor in Florida has developed. A metal organic framework (MOF) that uses blue light to convert CO2 into usable carbon-based fuels. The idea is to ...

Complete story...
Scientist invents way to trigger artificial photosynthesis to clean air
26 April 2017
A chemistry professor in Florida has just found a way to trigger the process of photosynthesis in a synthetic material, turning greenhouse gases into clean ...
New process integrates solar power into the hydrocarbon economy
Dateline: 26 February 2026
A new process for capturing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and turning it into usable liquid fuel has been commercialized and scaled up. Originally ...
Facebook, listen to my thoughts
Posted: 21 April 2017

In one of those slightly bizarre coincidences, we wrote a MindBullet seven years ago, suggesting that in the future (still to come) you would have a small earbud that could read your brainwaves and send out a tweet, just by thinking about it. We've seen lots of research and some progress towards brain-computer interfaces, but the idea of simply thinking to type has not quite arrived yet. ...

Complete story...
Facebook imagines tapping brain waves
21 April 2017
Facebook’s research unit, Building 8, is working to make it possible for people to type using signals from their brains, part of the lab’s broader effort ...
Brain computer interface works like a hearing aid
Dateline: 20 March 2022
Now you can update your Facebook status and search Google just by thinking about it. And you don't need fancy headgear or wires sticking out of your ...

Filtered by author: Doug Vining