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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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Filtered by tag: NanoTech
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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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WHAT BEAUTIFUL LASER EYES YOU HAVE, MR ROBOT!
Published on: 12 January 2017  
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Robotic vision has improved exponentially, and it's making them more 'human'
Dateline: 12 January 2020
In the last three years, laser-based optical radar, or LIDAR has come a long way. LIDAR became famous when Google started using it on their self-driving cars; but it was big, clumsy and slightly threatening. That spinning cylinder on top of a car or robot might help it navigate, but it looks so mechanical! Then along came digital 3D laser scanners. With a diamond-studded microchip at its core, the invisible light beam is manipulated electronically; no moving parts. The LIDAR chip is the size of a ...
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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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SMART NANOBOTS FOR CHRISTMAS
Published on: 22 December 2016  
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Keeping you healthy - from the inside
Dateline: 21 December 2023
On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me, an ingestible nanobot called 'Nanoboy', which I found wrapped up under the tree. It used to be that an apple a day kept the doctor away, but now it will be Nanoboy who keeps me out of the GP's office (or off his iPhone screen, if you're a fan of telehealth). This little wonder is so intelligent, it will alert me on my phone if my organs need help or any cells are going mad. Instead of having to go for my annual check-up, I will be pinged the ...
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A LAPTOP THAT FITS IN YOUR HAND
Published on: 9 June 2016  
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New meta-lens makes your phone screen the size of a laptop
Dateline: 7 June 2020
We'd all love to have a phone with a screen as big and clear as a laptop - but it must still fit in your pocket. There have been many attempts at roll-up, fold-up screens, and they've all been dismal disappointments. Now there's an entirely new approach that seems to break the rules of optical physics. Samsung's Galaxy 14 has a 4-inch screen; but when you turn it on, a 12-inch image of the screen appears above your hand; and it's crisp and square. This magic is performed by a new nanotech device ...
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MEET JOHN DOE 1.0
Published on: 26 May 2016  
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First fully-synthetic human genome completed
Dateline: 29 May 2026
It's taken a decade since the idea was first conceived, but a fully-specced, digitally defined genome of a human being without parents has been created. Not surprisingly, this human DNA blueprint has been christened John Doe 1.0 and lives in a supercomputer. It may be some time yet, before the genome is inserted into a cell and brought to life. You can however, see what John will look like, at various ages. The artificially intelligent system can render a perfectly clear 3D image of John, based on ...
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THE REAL JURASSIC PARK OPENS
Published on: 24 March 2016   1 Comment
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Genetic modification and bio-printing recreate the dinosaurs
Dateline: 9 June 2030
Exactly 37 years to the day since the movie Jurassic Park was released, the world's first real dinosaur park, with living, breathing dinosaurs, has opened in South America. After it emerged that trying to extract and reactivate dinosaur DNA from fossils was a dead end, scientists turned to genetically modifying birds, which we now know descended from various dinosaur species. Plenty of Virtual Reality experiences to enable mankind to 'meet' dinosaurs emerged over the last decade, but this is the ...
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SOLID HYDROGEN BREAKS THE RULES OF PHYSICS
Published on: 21 January 2016  
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Hydrogen compressed beyond a liquid into a metallic state is the ultimate super conductor
Dateline: 25 January 2035
Imagine a stable, solid metal that is made of pure hydrogen - the ultimate solid fuel and lightweight material. That is now within our grasp, as scientists perfect a new method of 'growing' hydrogen crystals and nano-wires. Twenty years ago, scientists saw the first signs that achieving metallic hydrogen was possible. By compressing microscopic amounts of hydrogen between two diamonds with massive force, the gas was observed to partially solidify, proving the theory that, with sufficient force, ...
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LOOK WHO'S TALKING NOW
Published on: 14 January 2016  
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When your dog talks back, you can understand him at last
Dateline: 15 January 2033
Since scientists first grew human vocal cord cells in dogs' throats, the science of communicating with man's best friend has advanced significantly. Now you can talk to your dog - he has always understood you - and when he responds, you can understand him! Implanting 3D-printed human vocal cords in dogs' throats was a great idea, but the voice-like sounds they produced were indecipherable except to trained animal behaviourists; kind of like how only a mother can understand the gurgles her baby ...
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[QUANTUM VALUE] NEW YEAR
Published on: 31 December 2015  
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This year will be both happy and unhappy - at the same time, in the same place
Dateline: 1 January 2019
Alphabet's announcement last week that its quantum computer breakthrough is both real and commercially practical is going to make a lot of people happy, and just as many unhappy, even the same people, at the same time. That's the inescapable duality of quantum phenomena; they are capable of being multiple things at once, like looking at a single thing from different perspectives. Which means you're never sure if you understand it; it all depends on your point of view. Quantum computers are not that ...
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TAKE A PILL TO LEARN CHINESE
Published on: 3 December 2015  
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Attend a workshop, swallow some tablets and go home with all the knowledge
Dateline: 17 November 2030
One of Ray Kurzweil's 'craziest' predictions from fifteen years ago just came true! Just like predictions of driverless cars and wireless brain interfaces were considered crazy in 2005, the idea that you could learn something other than by reading and listening was thought impossible. But the nanobots that we use to augment our natural intelligence have also become more user friendly. Now we can ingest them, and they will find their way into our brains and upload the information. The first ...
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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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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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AI IS AUGMENTED INTELLIGENCE
Published on: 28 May 2015   11 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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SMART CLOSETS KEEP YOU COOL
Published on: 25 September 2014   1 Comment
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Thinking Cupboardsā„¢ organize your stuff, and your life
Dateline: 24 September 2024
You'll never have to look for anything again. Now that everything's connected in the internet of things, the wardrobe knows which clothes are your favourite, and automagically sorts your sock drawer. Looking for your keys, sunglasses, hat, beanie or whatever? Just ask, and the Thinking Cupboardā„¢ will retrieve it for you. Each item or article of clothing has one of those nanochips embedded. The ones that draw power from your smart home network, wirelessly of course. They're basically standard for ...
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IT'S CHAOTIC AND WE LOVE IT
Published on: 31 July 2014  
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Digital darwininsm provides innovation opportunities for the bold and nimble
Dateline: 7 July 2024
"Let's go and get us some Randomness today!" That's the corporate battle cry of the new breed of innovators, business mavericks who are not fazed by the complexity or turbulence of the post digital age. "It's crazy out there; isn't it fantastic?" Life, and business, beyond 2020 is chaotic. Digital technology has disrupted every industry in every part of the globe. From robotic mining in Australia, to 3D-printed houses in China, to artificial intelligence accounting in America, precision agriculture ...
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THE CURSE OF ABUNDANCE
Published on: 10 July 2014   8 Comments
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Free energy spawns hordes of wetbots and kills off big brands
Dateline: 13 July 2033
"We're closing up shop. Wetbots made us broke." The production chief of iRobot consumer products grins ruefully. "Luckily we've still got our military contracts!" Since open source, peer production of printed solar panels has made electric power almost zero cost, robots have taken over agriculture, mining and most manufacturing. With no jobs but plenty of creative spirit, the 'maker' movement has spawned millions of backyard factories, churning out low volume, low cost 3D printed products for ...
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GAME OF CLONES
Published on: 29 May 2014   1 Comment
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It's patents versus patients as biotech giants fight to dominate the stem cell industry
Dateline: 16 June 2023
In the world of biotech, genetic engineering and regenerative medicine there's a magic holy grail: stem cells on demand. And like the holy grail, stem cells promise to cure all ills, and grant indefinite life to the worthy, and wealthy. The best stem cells to enhance your health are your own, taken at the embryonic stage, or grown by transforming your adult cells with genetic programming. Stem cells can be programmed to clone a variety of tissues and organs, providing replacement parts for your ...
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LIVING MACHINES TO CHANGE OUR WORLD FUNDAMENTALLY
Published on: 19 December 2013   4 Comments
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Get used to living in a world where products are grown rather than manufactured
Dateline: 27 October 2019
The promise of living biological machines, as well as industrial scale 3D printing, seemed just beyond our reach in the late 20th and early 21st Centuries. Now, they are reality - and 'manufacturing' will never be the same. 3D printing is now completely mainstream, with millions of printers humming away all over the world, from dinky US$ 25 home models to vast industrial printers turning out large components and whole products - and even printing bio products like meat. But the real breakthrough has ...
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A THOUSAND FUTURE THOUGHTS
Published on: 22 August 2013   2 Comments
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MindBullets celebrates twenty years of provocative scenarios
Dateline: 21 August 2023
Two decades ago FutureWorld began an innovative project; constructing weekly scenarios for the future, covering business, technology, society, politics, culture and global events. And so MindBullets: News from the Future was born. Provocative, engaging 'news stories' with a future dateline, designed to challenge the status quo, and highlight the consequences of today's breakthrough ideas. Since BEAM ME UP A BURGER, SCOTTY! was published in 2003, MindBullets have been arriving in tens of thousands ...
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