The Future And You
Ideas and opinion about the future based on verifiable facts of today.
 

New York Times bestselling authors Brandon Sanderson, Timothy Zahn, John Ringo, and Eric Flint are joined by Janet Morris, Patrick Vanner, Richard Groller, Michael H. Hanson and Phillip R. Cox; as well as three artists: Melissa Gay, Michael Bielaczyc, ~mel-mel; and several convention organizers: Warren Buff, Brandy Spraker, Derek Spraker, Elayna Little Cook, and LibertyCon's Founder, Uncle Timmy. Mentioned are: The Space Proletariat, and a writers club called The Fictioneers.

Dedicated to the 25th Anniversary of the science fiction and fantasy convention LibertyCon, this over-sized episode contains 17 short interviews gathered from around this year's con. This episode is intended to give you a little of the feel and flavor of the con.

LibertyCon's organizers have a strong science and engineering background, which manifests itself in the number of panels which are dedicated to science and engineering topics. This year alone, they had 17 hours of science panels; which I estimate to be about 20% of their total programming. Over the last nine years this con has given me many brilliant scientists and researchers to interview. People from NASA, DOD, DOE, even DARPA. As well as academicians, inventors and innovators.

LibertyCon has been so helpful to me that, last year when I could not attend because of my brother's wedding, they recorded more than ten hours worth of science for me to use in the show. This may sound like a minor thing; just someone flipping a switch somewhere, but it was not. They had to borrow a sound board and microphones from The Atlanta Radio Theater Company, set them up in the appropriate rooms, verify it was recording each panel properly, and then burn it all onto a DVD and snail-mail it to me. LibertyCon has been very good to me, and to this show.

This was a special LibertyCon in that Uncle Timmy (its founder and leader for the last 25 years) is stepping down after this one.  This was an emotional time for many because Uncle Timmy is such a big lovable man, full of modesty and kindness for everyone.  To me his is a man we can all love and admire. 

Hosted by Stephen Euin Cobb, this is the July 25, 2012 episode of The Future And You. [Running time: 99 minutes] 

Announcement: For a limited time, one of my novels is on sale. The Kindle edition of Skinbrain (Cerebrodermus Fantastica), my most recent and most futuristic novel, has been reduced to just $2.99.  That's right, under three bucks for what I consider my best novel. Here is a description of some of its main characters:

Cast of Characters:

Leather -- A runaway teenage girl. Tough and bold, she is learning to scrape out a living in the alleys of the largest city on Big Sandy: one of several dozen human inhabited worlds. Sleeping under bridges and in the dusty basement of an abandoned church, she takes the name Leather because it makes her feel tough, and she is determined to survive. She falls for a con-man named Johnny Bopp, and runs off with him straight into an assorted gang of mostly alien criminals.

Peter -- An evil little physicist who lusts after Leather and dreams of securing her to his torture rack, which at the moment holds an alien physicist he'd kidnapped weeks earlier, and from whom he’s been extracting scientific secrets. Peter plots to kill all the other gang members and capture Leather alive and undamaged so that he can damage her slowly and repeatedly for his morbid sexual enjoyment.

Breensdil -- A large and gentle insect-bearing alien. His people are peace-loving and nonviolent, and he is their greatest living physicist. Unfortunately, he is being tortured for secrets of advanced physics by Peter who intends to use these secrets to create more powerful weapons he can then sell to his Neo-Nazi allies on the colony world of Ironfeld.

Pug -- An easy-going frog-like alien of vast power and wealth who secretly owns and manages this galaxy. Each of her people own and manage one galaxy; by their laws anyone not up this task is aborted even if they are an adult. She causally decides which civilizations within her galaxy will live and which must be destroyed. She likes this new human civilization, and has an odd fondness for Johnny Bopp.

Johnny Bopp -- A happy-go-lucky human con-man and jewel thief who enjoys the company of aliens. A xenophile, he is forever seeking new things to see and do and taste and experience.

Eve Adams -- A beautiful and voluptuous android containing, and controlled by, a pair of octopus-like aliens who think as one because they are permanently mated. Driven by their obsession to studying human beings, they attempt to seduce Johnny away from Leather using their sensuous android body.

Aristat Sookirat -- Johnny Bopp's loyal friend. A bright red alien criminal who has more than once killed to protect Johnny. And needs little provocation to do it again.

The situation they find themselves in:

On a planet far from Earth, remains of a long dead alien civilization have been found. But this news has not reached the authorities—nor will it. Fourteen murderers—a mixed bag of human and alien criminals—have seen to that by killing the team of forty scientists who discovered the remains. These professional criminals combine their talents to search through the rubble for a hypothetical alien super-weapon. Leather thinks she's got what it takes to rub shoulders with the worst of them but soon realizes she’s in way over her head. Worse, as conflicts struggle to tear it apart, she learns just how unstable a team of criminals can be. Call it anything you like: treachery, betrayal, or just reducing the number with whom one must share the final spoils. Here, as in all of life, cowards and the dead reap nothing.

Skinbrain (Cerebrodermus Fantastica). It's a fun read. Check it out. 

Direct download: TFAY_2012_7_25.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:34 AM

Stephen Euin Cobb is today's featured speaker.

Topic: A full explanation of the final results of my "TA-65 Evaluation Project" which I started nearly a year ago.

In this episode I describe in detail the immunology blood test results for my mother and myself which were taken at the end of the evaluation period, and compare them with the immunology blood test results taken at the start the evaluation period. To bring everyone up to speed on my TA-65 evaluation project, I provide a thorough summary of the project itself. And I explain the miscellaneous benefits I and my mother have observed. These benefits include changes in: arthritis pain, frequency and vividness of dreams, as well as fingernail thickness and growth rate.

TA-65 has been shown in clinical trials to successfully lengthen telomeres, which are fundamental to the health of cells. TA-65 is produced only by TASciences, Inc.

Hosted by Stephen Euin Cobb, this is the July 18, 2012 episode of The Future And You. [Running time: 40 minutes]

Stephen Euin Cobb is an author, futurist, magazine writer and host of the award-winning podcast The Future And You. A contributing editor for Space and Time Magazine; he is also a regular contributor for Robot, H+, Grim Couture and Port Iris magazines; and he spent three years as a columnist and contributing editor for Jim Baen's Universe Magazine. He is an artist, essayist, game designer, transhumanist, and is on the Advisory Board of The Lifeboat Foundation. His novels include Bones Burnt BlackPlague at Redhook and Skinbrain.

Announcement: For a limited time, one of my novels is on sale. The Kindle edition of Skinbrain (Cerebrodermus Fantastica), my most recent and most futuristic novel, has been reduced to just $2.99. That's right, under three bucks for what I consider my best novel.

Direct download: TFAY_2012_7_18.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:18 PM

Chris Phoenix (futurist, nanotechnologist and software engineer) is today's featured guest.

Topics: The probability of developing human-like General Artificial Intelligence; Sky City (China's modular skyscrapers which are planned to be the tallest in the world); how and why medical progress in the USA is dragging its feet; the hope and value of Life Extension; things to watch in the next decade; his worry that governance may not get better; and recent research about the people who once inhabited Easter Island.

Hosted by Stephen Euin Cobb, this is the July 11, 2012 episode of The Future And You. [Running time: 27 minutes] This interview was recorded using Skype on June 23, 2012.

Chris Phoenix is a tech geek and software engineer currently working on projects including a CubeSat, health-related electronic devices, and astronomy hardware and software. From Stanford University, he obtained his BS in Symbolic Systems and MS in Computer Science. Previous careers have included dyslexia correction and co-founding the Center for Responsible Nanotechnology. In his spare time, he sings in an internationally competitive barbershop chorus, pursues extreme sports, and theorizes on major world problems.

Direct download: TFAY_2012_7_11.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 4:36 AM

Chris Phoenix (futurist, nanotechnologist and software engineer) is today's featured guest.

Topics: Examples of major disasters and how they can be categorized using The Phoenix Scale; the current helium shortage; the singularity and artificial intelligence; general AI; conversational AI; and The AI named Watson which won on Jeopardy.

Hosted by Stephen Euin Cobb, this is the July 4, 2012 episode of The Future And You. [Running time: 32 minutes] This interview was recorded using Skype on June 23, 2012. 

Chris Phoenix is a tech geek and software engineer currently working on projects including a CubeSat, health-related electronic devices, and astronomy hardware and software. From Stanford University, he obtained his BS in Symbolic Systems and MS in Computer Science. Previous careers have included dyslexia correction and co-founding the Center for Responsible Nanotechnology. In his spare time, he sings in an internationally competitive barbershop chorus, pursues extreme sports, and theorizes on major world problems.

News Items: 

[1] MIT engineers have developed a fuel cell that runs on the same sugar that powers human cells: glucose. This glucose fuel cell could be used to drive highly efficient brain implants of the future, which could help paralyzed patients move their arms and legs again.

[2] To make identification possible, whotube.com provides a youtube-like website accessible to the general public which allows merchants to post their store camera video footage of shoplifters, thieves and vandals. It also gives merchants the opportunity to promote their store by attaching an advertisement to each piece of footage uploaded.

[3] Indistinguishable from Magic: Predictions of Revolutionary Future Science is a new nonfiction article by Stephen Euin Cobb available in a Kindle Edition. This 27-page article--written by an experienced futurist who has interviewed over 300 people for their opinion about the future--describes several of the far future scientific and technological innovations which will transform our civilization from what it is now into an exponentially larger, faster, stronger and more dynamic civilization than can be contained on this planet, or in this solar system, or within this universe. These technologies will allow us to expand through those boundaries and find new unimagined boundaries beyond them to break through. (Article: 7,498 Words) Chapter Titles -- We Will Transmute the Elements; We Will Develop Many Completely New Physics; My Father's Watch; Hidden-Life May be More Common on Planets than Non-Hidden: And Earth May be No Exception; The Universal Diagram; Engineering Space: Altering This Universe and Making New Ones.

[4] A Brief History of Predicting the Future is a new nonfiction article by Stephen Euin Cobb available in a Kindle Edition. This 21-page article--written by an experienced futurist who has interviewed over 300 people for their opinion about the future--describes how predicting the future has changed many times through the centuries: from magic to science, and from science fiction to computation. This is a quick and lively romp designed to give the reader a taste of what futurology today is all about, and a feel for the long uphill climb it has made from its humble beginnings in the dawn of antiquity. (Article: 5,600 Words) Sections include: The Future is Deep; The Far Future; The Near Future; From Ancient Magic to Scientific Causality; Science Fiction made the Future Fun; But then the Future Got Serious; Yes, the Future does Compute; The Future may get Weird; Just before it becomes Unimaginable; Transhumanists want you to be Better than Healthy; Virtual Living; End of the World; But not all Futures are Deadly, or even Weird.

Direct download: TFAY_2012_7_4.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 5:32 AM