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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.

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Filtered by tag: Economics
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HOORAY FOR THE MACHINES! THEY'VE CREATED MILLIONS OF NEW JOBS
Published on: 17 March 2017   3 Comments
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Fears of jobless growth recede as markets demand new human skills
Dateline: 17 June 2023
The prophets of doom have been hard at work for the past decade, telling us that automation, robotics and machine learning are going to destroy jobs and leave millions of people unemployed and destitute. The reality has been somewhat different! Yes, some jobs have been taken over by the machines. But they're the dirty and dangerous jobs that most people did not want to do. Who wants to be a farm labourer or a production-line worker? It also true that many higher-level jobs have changed. AI systems ...
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ROSES ARE RED, BATTERIES ARE GREEN
Published on: 9 March 2017  
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A field of daffodils can power a town
Dateline: 8 March 2023
Once we thought that batteries were made of corrosive chemicals and heavy metals. But what happens when you can grow e-plants that store solar energy like super-capacitors? Back in 2017, scientists discovered they could grow nanowires inside a red rose, using the plant's own capillary system to create an internal network, and absorb electrolyte. It's a little like that old school lab experiment, where you run an LED off a potato - natural, organic electricity. Except that, in the case of e-plants, ...
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WALLS GO UP, TRADE COMES DOWN
Published on: 23 February 2017  
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Global downturn follows isolationist resurgence
Dateline: 7 March 2021
Brexit, Trump and now Le Pen. As the old, established economies turn inward and nationalist, global trade and co-operation suffer. It's been left to the new, New World, what used to be called Emerging Markets, to carry the torch of free trade. As Tim Harford notes: "The first and most fundamental insight is that all human civilisation is built on some sort of trade." ALL human civilisation. Productivity and progress rely on exploiting comparative advantages with trade, to everyone's gain. But the ...
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EMERGING MARKETS RACE FOR DIGITAL CURRENCY FIRST PLACE
Published on: 16 February 2017   2 Comments
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Who will lead the global chaincash system?
Dateline: 13 March 2019
Several emerging economies are in a desperate tech race to be the first to establish a blockchain based fiat currency with global acceptance. The contenders, perhaps surprisingly, are the new giants, China and India, and little-known South Africa. Rich countries are too rigid in their financial structures and too protective of their established reserve currency status to risk a game changing innovation like this. An upsurge in nationalism and rejection of globalisation by America, Britain and Europe ...
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SUMMER'S SUN WILL KEEP YOU WARM IN WINTER
Published on: 26 January 2017  
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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 cozy in winter. We run air conditioners to beat the summer sweat, and light roaring fires to warm our homes in winter. What a waste! What if we could save summer's heat, and release it in winter? Swiss scientists began playing with technology to do just that, back in 2017, and now it's being commercialized. The SunBank system uses summer's sun and ...
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THE END OF CITIES BUILT FOR CARS
Published on: 19 January 2017  
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Small fleets of autonomous vehicles reinvent urban transport - and humanize our cities
Dateline: 14 April 2023
I took my son to the Taxi Museum today - you know, that seedy warehouse in downtown New York with a collection of those old vehicles we used to use to travel around the city, with drivers - usually rude - slouched in front and clutching the steering wheel. It seems such a quaint idea today, as ride-sharing in silent, driverless electric vehicles (EVs) has dramatically reinvented urban transport, bringing to an end the horrific traffic jams of yesteryear - not to mention effectively eliminating road ...
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ANOTHER EXTRA, NEW YEAR
Published on: 29 December 2016   1 Comment
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Every year your life increases by another year
Dateline: 1 January 2033
If you're young enough, you may never die. Seriously. Think about it: If average lifespan keeps increasing, every year, then as long as you are younger than that, you have an excellent chance of living another year. And next year, the same, and so on. Eventually there will be diminishing returns to medical science and optimal nutrition, but if you live in a highly developed economy, you may live indefinitely. Unless you get killed in an aircar crash or earthquake, of course. But for most of us, ...
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ENGLAND AND WALES KEPT OUT OF EUROPE FOR A SECOND TIME
Published on: 15 December 2016  
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Scotland's veto ensures their old British colleagues are refused
Dateline: 18 January 2044
In a blow for the aspirations of citizens of England and Wales, the island nation's hopes of joining the EEU (Extended EU) have once again been crushed. "It's a tragedy. Why can't the Scottish recognize that we have changed. The old generation that hated membership and never understood its benefits have died out. We're the generation that were stripped of a future," says Denis Franks, International Secretary in the Liberal government. "Nothing has changed," says Humphrey Dalfries, the Scottish ...
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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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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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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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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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LONDON POPULATION FALLS AS SCOTTISH INDEPENDENCE LOOMS
Published on: 21 July 2016  
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Investment boom in Edinburgh triggers housing shortage
Dateline: 25 June 2020
London, a city which at its peak had almost 8.5 million residents, feels like everyone has gone away for the summer. You can always get a table, even at the trendiest restaurants, and the Tube is only half full. Over the past three years, as major employers have moved their corporate headquarters, or restructured to keep their European markets, hundreds of thousands have left. Following the loss of the UK's banking passport, Frankfurt and Dublin have emerged as new centres of finance, gaining the ...
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ISLAND CROP DECIMATED BY GENE DRIVE FLIES
Published on: 30 June 2016   1 Comment
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Scientists say no other theory seems to hold
Dateline: 15 October 2026
After watching Border Security Australia, passengers always got off the plane feeling an extra bit anxious and jittery. Thoughts like 'What if they say the dirt on my hiking boots smells funny? Or they confiscate my grandma's old dusty portrait?' often ran through peoples' heads. Quarantine officers checking for foreign organic matter and unwelcome species used to have an irritating, but doable job. That reality has changed dramatically. Ten years ago, the use of gene drive technology to eradicate ...
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MOBILITY AS A SERVICE
Published on: 16 June 2016   5 Comments
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Private cars banned in New York and London
Dateline: 17 August 2019
Four years ago, it was proposed that gasoline and diesel vehicles be banned from certain cities and states; but the new trend towards mobility as a service has caused a major re-think. It's not enough to insist on electric vehicles; privately owned cars are just so wasteful. Now it's becoming illegal to own your own car. It takes up too much of the city's resources, parking and charging; and the wasted asset, standing idle while you are not travelling - where's the sense in that? Fleet vehicles can ...
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FUSION'S FATAL FAILURE
Published on: 12 May 2016   2 Comments
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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 the project's acting chief scientist, "and without substantial budget increases, it's not worth doing anything else." The International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) project was begun in 2006, but took almost 20 years to reach completion, to the point where it could be activated. After decades of delays and cost overruns, there was ...
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PRESIDENT TRUMP WINS BALLOT SCRAPPING TERM LIMITS
Published on: 17 March 2016  
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Poll garners 95% turnout and universal support
Dateline: 14 October 2023
The counts are in and President Trump has an overwhelming vote of confidence in his continued leadership. With 95% of Americans voting for the motion, he will compete in his third presidential election in 2024. Mustapha Junar [ID21394230]*, representative of Citizens for Democracy, claims widespread ballot fraud, but President Trump scoffed at there being any impropriety under his reign. "Americans have never been happier, even if our economy is still shedding jobs. The results demonstrate that ...
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SOLAR POWER GOES VIRAL
Published on: 10 March 2016   9 Comments
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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 completely for individuals, homes and small businesses. What's more, large businesses and corporate campuses are also contributing to the energy internet, sharing their excess power in slack times, and buying back from the smart grid when they need to. Utility-scale generation has shrunk to essential services only, heavily subsidized by the ...
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CATALYZER CAPTURES CARBON
Published on: 25 February 2016   1 Comment
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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 invented ten years ago, the process uses a unique catalyst to bond hydrogen in water with CO2 in the air to form methanol, a useful liquid chemical that can be burned in combustion engines or used to manufacture more complex chemical compounds. The key to making this a viable industry is the low cost of solar power, which is sufficient energy input ...
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Filtered by tag: Economics
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