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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STATE-SPONSORED EUTHANASIA ADS HORRIFY ACTIVISTS

Published on: 10 January 2019

As lifespans get longer, China invests in a population control 'solution'

Dateline: 1 July 2033

As everyone knows, expected lifespans have increased dramatically over the last ten years. According to top genetic scientists, a 100-year-old today can expect to live until 150. That's fantastic, unless you are the government that has to foot the bill to keep all these geriatrics alive, healthy and well-fed. Although people may well be able to live until they are 150, since most people still retire at 75, the elderly are becoming an unaffordable burden on the state, and the society compelled to look ...

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DIGITAL CREATIONS BECOME MILLIONAIRES

Published on: 23 August 2018 1 Comment

Actual existence not a prerequisite for wealth anymore

Dateline: 28 September 2023

For a long time, people invested in and trusted those who they could see in the flesh. Steve Jobs presenting the new iPhone on stage. Tick. Warren Buffet speaking at the Berkshire Hathaway shareholders meeting. Tick. Heidi Klum strutting her stuff for Victoria's Secret. Tick. Not anymore. The world economy has witnessed a new influx of millionaires who built their wealth on, well, nothing. Nothing but data, that is. It started with computer-generated models and Instagram influencers who dethroned ...

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PERSONAL DATA GETS A PRICE

Published on: 14 June 2018

11 Year old sues parents for the value of his social profiling data

Dateline: 6 June 2023

Jayden Foley an eleven-year-old Californian student is suing his parents for the value of his leaked personal data. Says Foley, "Through their thoughtless social media posts on Snapchat, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram that exposed every detail of my life, personal preferences, fashion style and demographic details, my parents effectively gifted my personal data profile to those social networks, without my consent. I think its only fair that I'm compensated for the value of my own ...

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I THINK I'M GOING SLIGHTLY MAD

Published on: 22 February 2018 2 Comments

It's finally happened, according to my smartphone app

Dateline: 8 March 2021

That's the thing about our phones, they listen to everything we have to say. That fact alone might drive you nuts, but even if it keeps your conversations private, your phone can learn a lot about you, just by listening to how you speak. It's called metadata and there's a lot of it; who you called and how often, when you called and for how long, your location when you called, and so on. Phone companies and law enforcement have been making use of metadata for a long time; even without recording your ...

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MAGIC MIRRORS MAKE MARKETING FUN

Published on: 25 January 2018 4 Comments

Augmented reality selling seals the deal

Dateline: 26 January 2023

How do you let someone test a product or article of clothing without using samples? A virtual reality demo, that's how. And to highlight your product on a cluttered shelf, you would use augmented reality to add visual cues, and data. This is the new world of Digital Reality, a blend of VR, AR and well, just normal 'reality'. And whether it's through a smartphone, digital glasses or an in-store display, digital reality is becoming big business. A customer walks past your magic mirror, and suddenly ...

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THE BATTLE FOR A FREE INTERNET

Published on: 6 April 2017

Citizens vs. governments as the next generation of the internet unfolds

Dateline: 11 March 2020

It's 31 years since Tim Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web; and he is the first to admit that many things have gone wrong since his original dream. Sir Tim envisaged, in his own words, "an open platform that would allow everyone, everywhere to share information, access opportunities, and collaborate across geographic and cultural boundaries." Certainly the internet has achieved that - but increasingly it is a place where trolls attack with crude, vicious posts; where governments and political ...

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NOW LIFE REALLY IS A DRESS REHEARSAL

Published on: 27 October 2016

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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GOOGLE INVADES CUBA

Published on: 14 April 2016

People rejoice as Castro's firewall goes up in smoke

Dateline: 26 May 2019

Google Networks has launched its balloon and drone infrastructure over Cuba, bringing wireless internet to everyone in the country, for free. It's great for Cubans, who have endured decades of poor connectivity and strong censorship, but it's even greater for Google, who now has millions of new users for its advertising and products. It's liberating. "Cubans have been cut off from the benefits of being online for far too long," said Larry Page. "It's about time they had the opportunity to freely ...

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MADMEN REPLACED BY ADBOTS AND ROBO-WRITERS

Published on: 11 February 2016 2 Comments

Saatchi & Saatchi hire creative robots, not people

Dateline: 12 February 2020

I remember clearly when artificial intelligence expert Vivienne Ming told us: "No job or industry is safe from robotics and AI." That was five years ago. As a freelance copywriter, I was smug in my assumption that her assertion didn't apply to us, to creative skills. We were the exception to the rule; machines, no matter how smart, can't be truly creative, can they? Software bots and AI systems quickly evolved to handle ordinary, routine work like news and sports reports. Machine learning and deep ...

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FACEBOOK WINS IT FOR POTUS!

Published on: 1 October 2015 4 Comments

Fears the social giant swayed voters as Republicans sue

Dateline: 12 November 2016

"All you had to do was see the news feeds for Donald Trump. They were all negative, whereas those for Bernie Sanders were all positive," says Kurt Azazel, special counsel for Mr Trump. In the run-up to US presidential elections, numerous analysts expressed concern that Facebook was biasing its news feed in favor of the Sanders campaign. "If you get your news from Facebook - which some 250 million Americans do - you'd think that Trump was a dolt, whereas Sanders is a great statesman," says ...

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SOCIAL MEDIA IS DEAD

Published on: 24 September 2015

Long live cultural media

Dateline: 14 June 2017

Twitter is fading fast, becoming a niche echo chamber for journalists and publicists. Facebook is fragmenting, and services you've never heard of, but billions use daily, are dominating the online media scene. Welcome to cultural media, where the medium truly is the message. Even shops and malls are media now, providing entertainment, information and marketing opportunities first; products and transactions second. Most shoppers prefer to buy their goods online or in-store, for later delivery. It's ...

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DASH BUTTONS GATHERING DUST

Published on: 7 May 2015

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

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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ENGINEERING THE PERFECT LIFE

Published on: 12 March 2015 2 Comments

Let happiness and contentment find you

Dateline: 5 May 2019

Remember the outcry a few years ago, when Facebook deliberately filtered its newsfeed to see how specific stories influenced your mood and emotions? Nowadays people are choosing to opt-in to this type of modification. With more than enough bad news going around, like terror attacks, resource shortages or natural disasters, some consumers are desperate to optimize their experiences and their life in general. Choosing to allow emotion measurement technology to track their facial expressions while ...

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WHAT BILL GATES WANTS FOR CHRISTMAS

Published on: 25 December 2014

The new lifestyles of the rich and famous leave luxury brands in the lurch

Dateline: 22 December 2021

The glitzy shopping mall might have been the Mecca of money in the nineties, but no more. The higher level need for amazing experiences is replacing the accumulation of bling and BMWs - for those with deep pockets at least. There's a huge disparity when it comes to what consumers want. Millionaires and billionaires in America and Asia are no longer interested in Louis Vuitton luggage and Jaguar convertibles. Instead, the wealthy are forking out thousands for experiences they deem valuable, ...

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FACEBOOK ROLLS OUT FREE WEB

Published on: 18 December 2014 3 Comments

India gets free internet and messaging, non-video calls

Dateline: 20 December 2017

Following the successful blanketing of most of the African continent with Facebook's free internet service, Zuckerberg has announced the roll out of similar coverage for South America and Mexico, and the Indian sub-continent. By targeting countries where internet communications are still relatively expensive, Facebook is hoping to become the de facto home network for billions of users. Most people in these communities use smartphones and tablets rather than laptops and PCs, and the free internet ...

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SELLING YOUR WILDEST DREAMS

Published on: 11 September 2014

Dreamhackers peddle your subconscious data

Dateline: 9 February 2017

We spend a third of our lives with our eyes closed - literally that is. Besides the fact that the physical body regenerates and restores itself during this time, your subconscious also uses sleep to send you messages. The collective subconscious is one of the most powerful weapons (or should we rather say tools) of humanity, because it holds the secrets to our wants, needs and worries. The Shadow app was introduced two years ago with the aim of creating a global dreams repository. It became a lot ...

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USERS DESERT TWITTER FOR TWIST

Published on: 7 August 2014

Exciting new ad choices start avalanche

Dateline: 12 June 2017

The launch of the new Samsung Twist 'foldable tablet' last year has proved to be a watershed in social connectivity, and the biggest loser turns out to be Twitter. Samsung's hardware was a paper-thin tablet that could be used like a large graphic screen when space allowed, or folded four ways to the size of a smart phone. Integrated in the operating system was a highly graphic voice-driven version of WhatsApp that created what analysts called "an Apple-like software design revolution" among users ...

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CHINA SWAPS US DEBT FOR DATA

Published on: 20 February 2014 1 Comment

America's biggest creditor wipes out massive debt for quantum data

Dateline: 15 March 2024

China has long been thought as 'owning' the United States because of the huge amount of US debt on its books. But now China will 'own' us in the data wars, not finance or trade. The National Data Protection Agency, the network of government, banks, retailers and internet companies that has been collaborating on collecting and codifying our personal data for the last decade, has sold perpetual access to our data to China, for an indefinite moratorium on the repayment of the debt mountain. It's a ...

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NSA SELLS OUR PERSONAL DATA IN BILLION-DOLLAR AD DEAL

Published on: 12 December 2013 2 Comments

Security agency announces exclusive licensing contract with 'secret' advertising consortium to balance the budget

Dateline: 23 September 2016

The US government has, famously, been unable to agree critical budget amendments since 2013. Even the NSA has proven susceptible to these budget constraints. Up to last week, the government security service was facing an inability to pay its 25,000 web-monitoring staff. "We realized that we needed to think out of the box to fund our own activities," says General Hank Mephisto, a senior NSA spokesman. "We've been collecting metadata on just about everyone everywhere for almost a decade. We ...

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