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MindBullets is a part of the global FutureWorld Network, constantly sensitive to changes in the technological, economic, social, political and business landscape.

The MindBullets Contributors scan this rapidly changing environment for clues about possible future trends.

The results of this synthesis are combined by our contributors into an on-going series of MindBullets: News from the Future - with a summary emailed to you every Thursday and the complete MindBullets data base available online to explore each scenario in more detail.

Exciting scenarios of alternative futures based on breakthrough thinking today.

A powerful tool to help you learn from the future - a new MindBullet every week!

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DRONE HUNTING GOES VIRAL
Published on: 27 August 2015   1 Comment
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Bullet-proof paint creates need for cyber weapons
Dateline: 27 August 2017
Since the development of bullet-proof paint two years ago, drone manufacturers were quick to protect their products from the 'drone hunters' who typically shot them down at every opportunity, using special shotgun cartridges called "dronemunition." Drone hunting goes beyond vandalism. Many people feel drones are a threat to their privacy, trespassing on their individual rights, so why not shoot them down? So what if they're legal, or even helping the police and city managers, performing useful ...
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THE NEW 007 IS A HERO IN CHINA
Published on: 20 August 2015  
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Chen Bond shows up the villains as degenerate westerners
Dateline: 8 August 2019
The latest Bond movie has been released, and it may shock some fans of the British spy series that the hero is Chinese and the arch villain is American. Funded almost entirely by Alibaba Entertainment, the movie was bound to echo the changing balance of power between east and west. But to feature a Chinese actor as the hero - his character went to Eton and Oxford before being recruited by MI6 - is perhaps a stretch too far. Not for China; movie-goers from Beijing to Tianjin are mad about the new ...
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THINGS HOLD HUMANS TO RANSOM
Published on: 13 August 2015   5 Comments
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A rash of incidents floods the world's networks
Dateline: 11 June 2019
I still remember at the turn of the millennium when the 'Internet of Things' seemed to be such a benevolent business opportunity. There were going to be 1000 times more 'things' connected to the internet than humans, and that was going to be great for business. Well, the 'Internet of Things' is truly here. Almost every physical object has some sort of digital content embedded in it. Some are passive pea-brained objects (such as a can of Coke or a bottle of ketchup), others (such as watches and home ...
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I AM THE WIND WRANGLER
Published on: 6 August 2015  
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Listen to my song
Dateline: 24 July 2027
With flaring nostrils I test the air, funneling every subtle hint and nuance to my core. Greedily I drink the torrent that floods towards me; every celebrated triumph, every self-important selfie, every illicit interaction, every murky rumour and credible confession. I grok the details and minutiae from a thousand million voices. I listen to them trumpeting from the moral high-ground. I hear offensive opinions, frivolous factoids, and scary scenarios spewing from the pens of prophets. Half-truths ...
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214 SUCCESSFUL TRANSFUSIONS DESPITE HUMAN BLOOD SHORTAGE
Published on: 30 July 2015  
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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 the earthquake which struck Chengdu yesterday. Rescuers and volunteers are still working through the rubble of the Tianfu Times Tower, but Chengdu's hospitals are overwhelmed. "We called for blood donors," says Doctor Wang Changjiang, "but we can't process the blood fast enough to meet our needs." Despite this critical shortage, no-one has ...
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JET PACK TAKES OFF
Published on: 23 July 2015  
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Talk about being upwardly mobile!
Dateline: 25 June 2016
After more than 35 years in development, the world's first commercially available jetpack is now on sale. The sticker price is a mere US$ 150,000. Made from carbon fiber and aluminium, the Martin Jetpack doesn't have the traditional rockets of science-fiction jetpacks, which are powerful but very difficult to control. Instead it uses rotary thruster fans, like a flying car. Actually, it's more like a flying bicycle. A small petrol engine drives two fans, one on either side of the pilot, to lift ...
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SMARTWATCH RUNS ON SUNSHINE
Published on: 16 July 2015   1 Comment
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A supercomputer that sits on your wrist and never needs recharging
Dateline: 18 February 2022
It's been seven years since IBM invented 7nm transistor chips, and five years since 3D Universal Memory was launched by Samsung. Since then we've seen personal computers disappear and be replaced by ever smaller, ever smarter mobile devices. Devices that understand you when you speak to them, are connected to the cloud, all the time, respond to your movements and gestures, and recharge themselves while you sleep. That's because the exponential growth of computing power and shrinking size has made ...
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MAGIC EYE FINDS MISSING GIRL
Published on: 9 July 2015  
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Criminal act foiled by smart body camera
Dateline: 4 July 2018
When Amanda Reed disappeared on campus, safety officers were quick to start a search. Friends reported seeing her getting into a light coloured sedan at the west entrance. They were sure it was Amanda, but a review of security camera video yielded nothing. The police were at a dead-end. Pictures of Amanda were circulated on social media, and people were encouraged to call in with any information, but to no avail. Then a bright young student in the media lab thought of 'Asking the Magic Eye'. Using ...
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WINNING THE MIGRANT LOTTERY
Published on: 2 July 2015  
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After running the gauntlet across North Africa and the Mediterranean, refugees face one more challenge: random chance
Dateline: 2 April 2017
Europe might have had its head in the sand, but we all know that problems do not go away on their own. Months and months of inaction in the Middle East, coupled with the ghosts of Scramble-for-Africa past and the ups-and-downs of developing nations have led to a surge of migrants knocking on Europe's door. Thousands have lost their lives either drowning, dying of pneumonia or being deceived and killed by human traffickers. Can we blame people for dreaming of a humane and prosperous life? If they ...
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UBERIZE YOUR COGNITIVE SURPLUS
Published on: 25 June 2015  
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Wouldn't you like to get paid just for thinking?
Dateline: 22 June 2018
We're all part of a massive super computer. A global network of brains. No, we haven't been assimilated into the Matrix, but we may as well have been! We're all willing participants in a gigantic system that mines our attention, getting us to contribute some fraction of our spare cognitive capacity. We respond with comments, likes, votes, tweets, answers. Sometimes we create highly entertaining, original videos and stories, just because we can. There are billions of brains on the internet, and most ...
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ROLLING BACK THE MARCH OF TIME
Published on: 18 June 2015  
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When does a ripe old age become too much of a good thing?
Dateline: 31 May 2024
It has become easier and easier to disguise your real age. You can take away your wrinkles by visiting a plastic surgeon or appoint a personal trainer to keep your body in shape. You can play Sudoku all day long to keep the neurons engaged, and follow a healthy eating plan. But you couldn't roll back the clock. Until now. Scientists are currently in the final stages of testing a drug called Glycorapamycin during human trials. In mice and dogs, the drug proved its power by slowing - and even ...
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CHINA'S CENSORS HUMILIATED AS CITIZEN ARMY WINS CYBERWAR
Published on: 11 June 2015  
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Great Firewall falls following week-long Github attack
Dateline: 26 November 2016
For the first time in over a decade, China's citizens are able to browse the internet freely. Politburo spokesmen have tried putting a positive spin on recent events, but Guo Shengkun - the Minister of Public Security - has not been seen in days and is assumed to be under house arrest. Fifteen days ago, Github - a web repository which hosts much of the world's open-source software projects - came under sustained distributed denial-of-service attacks. While the company is often subject to such ...
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NEW CHILL PILL TO FIX SOCIETY
Published on: 4 June 2015  
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Dopamine hailed as the new weapon in the fight against crime and anti-social behaviour
Dateline: 1 June 2021
In 2019, Lyla Roberts was assaulted at a bus stop in London. A bystander recorded the incident and posted it online, instead of intervening. The title of the post: "5 star entertainment! Who needs the movies!?" Roberts spent four months in a coma before being declared brain dead. It shocked the world, but has also inspired a pharmaceutical breakthrough. The newly released drug is called Lyla and is grounded in years of research which also produced an oxytocin-inducing nasal spray. Lyla works by ...
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AI IS AUGMENTED INTELLIGENCE
Published on: 28 May 2015   2 Comments
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That wunderkind has got a chip in her head
Dateline: 12 June 2029
We used to think of AI as artificial intelligence, but that's an old concept. Now we use it to mean augmented intelligence; natural human intelligence augmented with bioelectronics wizardry. The average human brain has a working memory of seven items, plus or minus two. That means we can, on average, remember seven things at once; the more gifted can handle about nine. Thinking about an upgrade? Now you can install the latest neuroprosthetic from CognitionUP and get a working memory of 20. That ...
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MOVING ON UP - TO THE COUNTRY
Published on: 21 May 2015   1 Comment
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Upgrading from city life to the rustic rural
Dateline: 1 February 2027
The world is definitely urbanizing at a rapid rate and by 2030 about 60% of the world's population will be sipping (or serving) Martinis on skyscraper rooftop bars. With all this talk about metropolises, it's no wonder that some of us got a bit carried away, moving all our business to the concrete jungles. However, the wise ones know that you should never put all your eggs in one basket and once again this has proven to be true. Tired of renting and never settling, sick of smog, congestion and the ...
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EMERGENT INTELLIGENCE IS A WEB OF DEMOCRATIC DEVICES
Published on: 14 May 2015   3 Comments
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Sensors and gadgets clamour to be heard
Dateline: 13 May 2024
After all these years, we're still stuck with basic artificial intelligence. AI has not matured to the 'general' level, where machines are as smart as humans. Which may be a good thing. There's no dark lord that's going to turn us all into paperclips! But intelligence is now embedded in so many local devices, cameras, sensors and drones, that we are surrounded by a cloud of things that can debate the state of the world around us. And come up with some pretty useful conclusions. You walk into a ...
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DASH BUTTONS GATHERING DUST
Published on: 7 May 2015  
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Shopping not so easy to revolutionize after all
Dateline: 7 December 2017
Amazon earnestly tried, but for the most part, they successfully failed. Their Dash Buttons were launched in early 2015 as the e-commerce giant tried to create a future where we buy specific grocery items by pressing physical, branded buttons stuck to surfaces in our homes. The efficiency built into the Dash Buttons has not been all that it's cracked up to be. People have deployed the odd button in their homes, but in general, Amazon has underestimated the ritual that is weekly or bi-weekly ...
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THE SECRET LIFE OF PAPER
Published on: 30 April 2015  
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Still here to haunt and help us
Dateline: 25 April 2025
Decades ago, we used to joke that the paperless office would arrive about the same time as the paperless toilet. And to be sure, we're still using paper centuries after it was invented in ancient China. For hundreds of years, paper has been used to communicate, to record information, to store it for the future, and to convey secrets. Paper was the earliest conveniently portable technology to become information-enabled, and one of the most versatile. Right from the start, paper was used for secure ...
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ONE CARD TO RULE THEM ALL
Published on: 23 April 2015   1 Comment
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From loyalty cards to real rewards in real-time
Dateline: 9 September 2018
We have all been there. Pondering the squandered minutes of our lives that we'll never get back. Dear person in front of me, please find the right loyalty card and pay already! It's a system that's been desperate for a redesign. The run-up to this moment was the coalition loyalty program launched by XEMA in 2015. One loyalty card served many stores and the points could be redeemed at all of the coalition stores as well. Problem was, consumers still needed a loyalty card as well as a payment ...
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SPACEX LAUNCHES MOON TAXI
Published on: 16 April 2015   2 Comments
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Fancy a walk on the dark side?
Dateline: 15 June 2029
It's fun to go away for a summer holiday, and what better, more exotic place than the moon? That's assuming you can afford the fare, of course. For the well-heeled, it has just become possible to take that once-in-a-lifetime trip to the moon, and back; courtesy of SpaceX. SpaceX has announced that it is opening bookings for round-trips to the moon, including landing on the surface and a short moon-walk. Following the successful powered landing of the Falcon 9 rocket in 2015, SpaceX was quick to ...
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