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Futurepath: Energy

Energy mosaicFrom ultra-modern Manhattan penthouses to cell phones and radios in sub-Saharan homes, from private jets zipping over the oceans to motor scooters in southeast Asia - we require energy to power our lives. At this point, only protected Amazon tribes and the few humans who have chosen to live off the energy grid do not use any of the world's energy supplies.

Overall, we humans use in excess of 500 exajoules of energy per year. The energy we produce is derived by a variety of sources such as nuclear; fossil fuels, including coal, crude, and gas; and renewables such as wind, hydro, and solar. These fuels are broken into two main types of use, the first is locomotion via fuel burning engines and the second is the creation of electricity, which is then used as a source of power for motors, lights, appliances, and the gadgets we use (to name a few).

An Hour with Will McIntosh you aren't familiar with Will McIntosh, he isn't surprised.  Like many authors, Will is happy just to have a writing career and thankful for the opportunities his readers provide, even if his name isn't well known. But given the quality of his previous work and a new young adult science fiction series in development (The first novel, Burning Midnight, is scheduled for 2016), don't be surprised if you start hearing his name more often.

But you should know his short story "Bridesicle" won the Hugo Award for Best Short Story and also the Asimov's Reader Poll in 2010. It was also a finalist for the Nebula Award for Best Short Story that same year. His short version of "Soft Apocalypse" was a finalist in 2005 for both the British Science Fiction and British Fantasy Awards.

Timebanks on The Future of Money Podcast

On the Future of Money Podcast, Heather Schlegel interviews Autumn Rooney, the founder of the Echo Park Time Bank. While I've heard of time swapping, time banks themselves are a new concept. In 42 minutes, they cover several interesting points on the topic, including:

  • @3:50 - How is the future changing? Ms. Rooney points out today's unsustainable methods and how they are bringing about tomorrow's changes.
  • @4:55 - An explanation of time banks and how time values are traded.
  • @15:20 - How do new users experience this service?
  • @23:20 - How time banks can mesh with the cash economy.

I.R.I.S. - The day an AI goes rogue

A short film by Hasraf HaZ Dulull, I.R.I.S. is a military artificial intelligence with an expanded battle capacity plus strike autonomy. A short action film at heart, events unfold as the military sends in humans to attempt to regain control over the system. The script and scenes are not very informative, but do offer some nice visuals and a drone swarm I haven't seen used before.

Wanderers: a short film presenting humanity's expansion into the Solar System

In the short film Wanderer, Erik Wernquest pairs Carl Sagan's spoken thoughts with views of humans at various locations within our solar system. "For all its material advantages, the sedentary life has left us edgy, unfulfilled." Sagan himself reads these words and explains his view that our "everlasting itch for things remote" will push us beyond the limitations of our planet.