Monday, August 10, 2009

Great Thoughts - The Futurists

In our Week 5 class, we discussed the following thoughts about the future. This extends last week's discussion, when we observed that there is no single method for predicting the future.

“We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.” (Albert Einstein)

"Any useful idea about the future should appear to be ridiculous." (Jim Dator)

"A part of our future appears to be evolutionary and unpredictable, and another part looks developmental and predictable. Our challenge is to invent the first and discover the second." (John Smart)

“Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.” (Albert Einstein)

“Forecasting is not a respectable human activity.” (Peter Drucker)

After discussing the semantics and how we would re-phrase them, one student closed our session with the following quote.

"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." (Arthur C. Clarke, "Profiles of the Future" - Clarke's third law).

Next week, we will examine how Christakis describes the SDP method and discuss a case study from his book during our Second Life class session.

Visit the CS 855 Summer 2009 list of blogs to the right to view the student discussions each week. The topics range from inspiring videos from Ted Talks, our opinions about the Horizon Report's predictions, the use of collaborative Web tools and our reflections on the future.

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