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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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CREEPY CRAWLIES CLEAN THE HOUSE AND POOL
Published on: 8 December 2016  
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Combining biotech with 3D printing and robotics creates quantum leap
Dateline: 7 December 2019
Another breakthrough has been revealed, this time in the arcane science of biobotics; not bionic appliances for humans, but organic robots. These are machines built with ceramics, metals and living tissue - usually cells cultured from lab rats. Biobots are not really living machines like radio controlled cockroaches or zombie moths. Rather they are a combination of biological material like muscle and synthetics like silicon, controlled by electronics, enzymes and light pulses. In 2016, scientists ...
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SMART CAR INCRIMINATES VODKA-LOVING OWNER
Published on: 1 December 2016  
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Should your own things be able to rat you out?
Dateline: 10 January 2018
Gone are the days when a highway surveillance system or patrol cop were the only triggers for your traffic infringements. Welcome to a brand-new world. Gregor Kashniv from Moscow had a few too many vodkas last Friday and when he eventually surfaced late Saturday afternoon, he found himself in a cold, dark jail cell in the inner city. He vaguely recalled being arrested within 300 metres of his home. Apparently he protested heavily, saying that he was definitely under the limit and that he has no ...
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LEARNING TO UNLEARN
Published on: 24 November 2016  
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New college teaches thinking, learning and unlearning skills
Dateline: 21 September 2018
You've probably heard the old cliché: "By the time you've finished your business course or degree, everything you've learned will be out of date!" Well it's true; even more so, today. Now there's a new college to tackle this problem: The UnVarsity College. It's got nothing to do with the UN; rather it focuses on a new qualification, the MBL, or Master of Business Learning. It's the business school of tomorrow. "The problem isn't learning, it's unlearning. In every aspect of business, we are ...
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LONDON WANTS TO SHANGHAI YOU
Published on: 17 November 2016  
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Now various city 'passports' are vying for your attention
Dateline: 4 March 2029
People used to compare and evaluate national passports in terms of what they offered and how many doors such a document would open for them. Now it's not so much about countries competing against one another; instead megacities are trying to appeal to skilled workers by throwing numerous benefits into the mix. The first signs of this revolution appeared in 2019 when, after Brexit, trade and financial services in London were allowed to attract foreign workers to their industries in exchange for ...
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GOODBYE TRUMP, HELLO MADAM PRESIDENT
Published on: 10 November 2016  
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After one term in office, America has had enough of the Orange POTUS
Dateline: 10 November 2020
At long last, the United States has a female head of state. Hillary Clinton's big mistake was one of timing. She couldn't beat Obama, and when up against Trump, she failed to inspire or engender trust. Many voters saw her as a has-been. But now the tables have been turned. Trump, like Jimmy Carter, has failed to secure a second term. And his ouster is a woman. To some extent, Trump was his own worst enemy. Having exposed himself, his thinking and biases, the kind of person he was deep down, ...
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WILL YOU SURVIVE A BEER TRUCK MOMENT?
Published on: 3 November 2016   1 Comment
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It all depends on your digital life value
Dateline: 30 October 2024
Last week's unfortunate multiple vehicle collision was unique in several respects. Not only was it the first time the OTTO beer truck was involved in a major collision, it was also the first 'test' of the Survivability Option System (SOS). Put simply, SOS allows participating entities, when alerted to an impending collision, to bid in real time to increase their survivability. Naturally this all happens in nano-seconds, so it's driven by algorithmic parameters, not human thought processes. This is ...
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NOW LIFE REALLY IS A DRESS REHEARSAL
Published on: 27 October 2016  
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VR lets you truly try, before you buy
Dateline: 26 February 2020
Remember when it used to be good enough, if you offered a high quality product or excellent service? It's become much harder to get to the finish line with the same old tactics. You see, to buy or not to buy, that has always been the question. Except now, it's so much easier to answer. Shopping around has been redefined; the pre-buying experience has turned into a deal-breaker. In this lower growth world, trial by virtual reality has become the norm for the middle class. A score from Booking.com ...
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AI FOR PRESIDENT
Published on: 20 October 2016   1 Comment
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The next Commander in Chief is an avatar
Dateline: 3 November 2020
When a Presidential decision can affect millions of people's lives, it's a weighty matter; one that must balance ethics, integrity and pragmatism with what is best for the majority of the people. It's not easy to arrive at the best decision, even with a host of expert advisors. That's why it is best left to the dispassionate rationality of Artificial Intelligence. Since Watson learned to diagnose cancer quicker and more accurately than the most experienced oncologist, the IBM AI platform has also ...
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SAY HI TO DECEPTIVE VEGGIES
Published on: 13 October 2016  
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Synthetic Biologists say it’s not what it seems
Dateline: 4 February 2022
The sugar taxes did not work, the juice cleanses came and went, and now that obesity rates have broken through the roof, it's time for us to try something different. In 2016 Oxford scientists created oranges that tasted and smelled like grapefruit. They were driven by purely economic reasons back then, as it took about 400,000kg of grapefruits to produce 1kg of grapefruit flavouring for use in other food products such as sweets and drinks. From there the technology improved exponentially as ...
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CHINA TRUMPS TRUMP, RUSSIA LOOMS LARGE
Published on: 6 October 2016  
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Brexit looks benign in the face of new shocks
Dateline: 14 October 2017
Disruption and turbulence are the new normal, as Black and 'Grey' Swans hatch repeatedly. When the British voted to leave the EU, it was a great shock to the global system, and markets reacted in both predictable, and unpredictable ways. While everyone was 'waiting and seeing' which way the wind would blow, Donald Trump became POTUS, sending another shockwave through the world. Within a year, France and Germany saw populism and reactionary forces replace their governing parties, and the EU is ...
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LET YOUR SHIRT FIX ITSELF
Published on: 29 September 2016  
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Self-repairing clothing works like magic
Dateline: 26 November 2019
With Millennials lacking basic needlework skills and only thinking of Twitter when you say 'thread' - someone had to come up with a sewing solution that is so easy, even the laziest among us would have no excuse. Researchers at D-IT in Paris have created a detergent that can infiltrate torn or damaged clothing fibers and enable them to re-attach. Just use cold water, a spoonful of Mendy (provisional name) and 25 minutes later your sweater will really be as good as new! Mendy was developed from an ...
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APPLE AIRPHONE REDEFINES ICT
Published on: 22 September 2016  
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Voice is the new mobile computer interface
Dateline: 21 September 2019
The company that brought us the world's first true smart phone has done it again. A dozen years after the launch of the iPhone, Apple has completely redefined the personal mobile computing device - you know, that thing we used to call a 'phone.' At the height of the smartphone revolution, Apple's iPhone 8 was being outsmarted by Samsung and other Android devices; cheaper, faster and more ubiquitous than Apple, the open platform ruled. But in its inimitable fashion, Apple had "just one more thing" to ...
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FIRST COMPANY TO BAN SMART DRUGS DESPITE PROFIT RISK
Published on: 15 September 2016  
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Global firm says "No thanks, we're good" in a new world of ethical dilemmas
Dateline: 4 May 2026
To boost the brain, or not to boost the brain? That's the latest differentiating factor that is dividing clients and determining their choice of service providers. No one is sure exactly how the nut should be cracked, but in the most progressive markets some executives are already taking a stand. The German engineering firm AUB has implemented pioneering policies relating to the (non)-use of brain enhancing drugs at work. Their belief? Increased productivity and innovation is necessary and very ...
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RELIGION IS A DYING BUSINESS
Published on: 8 September 2016  
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Traditional religious beliefs are dying out as global living standards rise
Dateline: 1 September 2034
A charismatic preacher once wrote that to get seriously rich, start your own religion. But academics suggest the world's major religions, including Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism and Buddhism, emerged as an evolutionary response to the differences in lifestyle between wealthy elites and other, poorer, communities. The disadvantaged classes needed hope for a better future, and a deity to blame for their misfortunes; a higher order being in which to place their faith. Now that poverty is ...
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POWER TO THE PEOPLE
Published on: 1 September 2016  
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Chatbot lawyer is helping victims to take back control
Dateline: 4 February 2018
Back in the day, when faced with a bureaucratic 'irritation', such as a parking fine or (wrongful) accusation of some sort, people usually followed three options. The uninformed paid their dues without questioning; the resource-constrained simply kept dodging the authorities; and those with deep pockets took on the fight, because they had the means to prove their point. With legal fees out of reach for the majority of the global population, altruistic programmers have taken matters into their ...
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PLEASE LET ME HELP YOU
Published on: 25 August 2016  
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My drone knows just how you feel
Dateline: 24 August 2019
Knowing how someone is feeling, or reading the mood of a crowd at a political rally, just got a whole lot easier with SensUbot - a small drone that scans people with a multi-spectral camera. The intelligent agent controlling the drone provides a real-time evaluation of your mood, sentiment towards a situation or proposal, or even your neural state. Are you bored, frustrated, angry, joyful or content? SensUbot can tell. Now there's no excuse for a public speaker to lose the crowd. A surreptitious ...
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AI IS YOUR PERSONAL LIFE COACH
Published on: 18 August 2016  
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It guides you based on a real-time situational analysis of what's happening
Dateline: 14 July 2022
Google Glass was not massively successful when initially launched. The benefits were marginal at best and people preferred to rely on their phones, rather than don geeky eyewear. We had Siri and Google Now, that spoke to us. But these were only 'basic' artificial intelligence agents. Six years ago saw the launch of Nigel, touted as the first truly "Artificial General Intelligence" or AGI. A cloud-based algorithm that was more than smart; Nigel could learn from your actions and transactions, build ...
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THE FUTURE SURE AIN'T WHAT IT USED TO BE
Published on: 11 August 2016   1 Comment
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The future will always surprise us
Dateline: 11 August 2026
Back in the 1950s, seventy years ago, people made all sorts of predictions about what the future would be like. We'd have flying cars and robot maids, it was all so exciting. Well, it hasn't turned out quite like that. That's the point; the future is always different to what we expect. Sometimes things don't materialize, like fusion power and flying saucers. Other times they exceed our wildest Star Trek dreams, like smartphones and teslas. Take the Apple iPhone as a case in point. As leading edge ...
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DEADLY DISAPPEARING DRONES
Published on: 4 August 2016   1 Comment
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The technology is neutral, the applications not
Dateline: 12 December 2023
It's a dream come true for gadget geeks and Bond-aficionados alike: tech toys that self-destruct and leave no trace. That's not always a good thing. Initial research conducted by the US military lead to the development of VAPR (Vanishing Programmable Resources) systems. Labelled "Snapchat for hardware," VAPR aimed to develop an electronic system that could literally disappear into thin air when triggered. This made 'object evaporation' possible - systems would not be of any value beyond enemy ...
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BLOCKCHAIN TRADING DISRUPTS CURRENCY EXCHANGES
Published on: 28 July 2016   2 Comments
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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 what they deserve, for years of fleecing consumers and investors. Most of us, at one time or another, have had that uncomfortable feeling of chagrin, when faced with a bank or forex dealer's spread of prices. "We buy US dollars at 0.89 euro and sell them at 0.98," might be the typical offering. That's a massive spread profit for simply performing ...
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