Building meaningful futures - Issue #7





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human works design - building meaningful futures

January 15 · Issue #7 · View online

'human works' empowers the game-changers of tomorrow to build meaningful futures. This newsletter is for leaders and change-makers, who want to elevate humanity by living consciously, designing conscious business that have a purpose with sustainable profit, and contributing to better systems for the diverse communities in our society, for future generations and for our planet.

As we’re spearheading into 2017, expect more pervasive technology ‘improving our lives’, most obviously in the area’s of the Internet of Things, Automation and Artificial Intelligence, Digital Assistants and Chatbots, creating further blurry lines between the physical and the virtual worlds through Virtual and Mixed Reality, evermore accessible in an everything on-demand economy and through voice interfaces. The coming of more neuro-, nano- and quantum computing advances in hardware, precision medicine and further read/write progress of editing the human gnome towards endless longevity.
Digital addiction is one of the fastest growing trends amongst members of society everywhere, the age of emotional machines coming to market and the race towards total computational entanglement becomes more visible every day.
“Twenty-first-century technology may enable external algorithms to know me far better than I know myself, and once this happens, the belief in individualism will collapse and authority will shift from individual humans to networked algorithms. People will no longer see themselves as autonomous beings running their lives according to their wishes, and instead become accustomed to seeing themselves as a collection of biochemical mechanisms that is constantly monitored and guided by a network of electronic algorithms. For this to happen, there is no need of an external algorithm that knows me perfectly, and that never makes any mistakes; it is enough that an external algorithm will know me better than I know myself, and will make fewer mistakes than me.” - Yuval Noah Harari in Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow.
Welcome to our new reality.
10 years ago was a time where the young tech companies, including Facebook and Linkedin for example, where challenging incumbents about how wrong it was to create walled gardens and now these companies are doing exactly the same, except nobody finds it important enough any longer to mention that. Everyone accepts this as ‘normal’ now and stopped questioning, now the challengers became incumbents themselves. Isn’t it amazing how things are accepted and normalised so quickly? It’s just an example of how addictive we all became to these technologies.
Despite all technological progress, in most Western economies countries, we’re worse off than our parents or the generations before us and it seems harder for many people to find happiness in their day-to-day lives.
It is important for all of us to understand how we can contribute in creating a better society and take more responsibility, in contributing better to the common good, and by holding the ones responsible, abusing our rights or trying to rip-off what previous generations have stoically build over decades.
We need to collaborate across all sectors of society to create an inclusive vision for the future.
THIS is the essential stuff for me I’ll work on in the near future. I will announce a number of new initiatives here soon related to this. What about you? What are your essential parts and building blocks to manage your life and work in 2017?
This week, I do recommend you read the World Economic Forum’s Global Risk Report 2017 to understand the challenges ahead. The report looks at the most significant long-term risks worldwide, drawing on the perspectives of experts and global decision-makers.
Here’s a quick summary of what’s at stake.
Economic growth and reform
From the beginning of the 20th century to the 1980s inequality has been declining in the industrialised world, however between 2009 and 2012, incomes of the top 1% grew by more than 31%. Inequality is now seen as the most important trend for the coming 10 years.
Rebuilding Communities
Decades of rapid social and economic change have widened generational gaps and amplified issues of national identity and cultural values. The challenge will be to find inclusive ways to bridge sharp cultural divides while preserving individual rights.
Managing Technological Disruption
Technology is radically transforming our world and shaping the nature of the risks we face. An estimated 86% of manufacturing job losses in the US between 1997 and 2007 were due to automation, compared to less than 14% due to trade. With almost half of all jobs at risk due to rapid technological change, the nature of work itself is being transformed. We need new collaborative systems to minimise the risks of dramatic social disruption and increasing income disparity.
Furthermore we need to strengthen global cooperation and accelerate action on climate change.
My activities in the future and whom I’ll cover in this newsletter will cover the use of technology for good, ethical business and report on projects and stories that reflect upon what it means to stay human in this age of exponential humanity. Feel free to send me your stories and projects, I’ll be happy to share them here with my readers.
Have a great week!

Socratic Design
We are getting more and more interest to setup Socratic Design workshops everywhere. We’re setting up next week in Istanbul and have planned another one alongside Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. Don’t hesitate to contact me if you’d like to setup a workshop in your locality.
Socratic Design Workshop @ Joint Idea, Istanbul on Jan 19, 2017.
Socratic Design Workshop @ Mobile World Congress, Barcelona on March 3, 2017.
Mobile World Congress events
The biggest mobile show in the world is coming closer again, make sure to get your Early Bird tickets for both Mobile Sunday and IoT Stars I co-organise as the sales of these tickets end on January 20th.
Mobile Sunday 2017 with on 26 Feb 2017
IoT Stars - THE Internet of Things Networking Event during #MWC17
Must reads
Can You Tell Fake News From Real? Stanford Study Finds Students Have 'Dismaying' Inability
We Must Fix This Fucking Mess - John Battelle
Why The Biggest Problem in the World is Also the Easiest to Fix
Did Media Literacy Backfire? – danah boyd
Signal Boost - The Verge
David Brooks on Character in the Selfie Age
Lifelong learning is becoming an economic imperative
The man who studies the spread of ignorance
A Curated List of 2016’s Biggest Ethical Conundrums
The Future of (no) Work
Our Automated Future - The New Yorker
Japanese white collar workers are already being replaced by artificial intelligence
iPhone manufacturer Foxconn plans to replace almost every human worker with robots
Caught On Tape: How The Robots Are Taking Over Amazon
Quantum computing
Quantum Computers Ready to Leap Out of the Lab in 2017 - Scientific American
Quantum Computing Is Real, and D-Wave Just Open-Sourced It
The Truth About Blockchain
Wall Street Clearinghouse to Adopt Bitcoin Technology
The Viability of Enterprise Blockchain beyond Financial Services
Artificial Intelligence
MIT Media Lab to participate in $27 million initiative on AI ethics and governance
Artificial Intelligence, Automation, and the Economy
5 Big Predictions for Artificial Intelligence in 2017
IEEE puts out a first draft guide for how tech can achieve ethical AI design
We don't understand how AI make most decisions, so now algorithms are explaining themselves
How voice technology is transforming computing
Love Your Bot, But Know It's Always Listening
Harvard Researchers Have Found the Source of Human Consciousness
Personal growth
Manage Your Energy, Not Your Time
We need a contract for co-parenting, not just for marriage
Every successful relationship is successful for the same exact reasons
Illumina wants to sequence your whole genome for $100
The weird and wonderful
Music's Weird Cassette Tape Revival Is Paying Off
Floating Paris gym uses human energy to sail down the Seine River
The Beautiful Relationship Between Physics and Jazz
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