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In his 1971 novella The Futurological Congress, the Polish science-fiction writer Stanisław Lem describes a group of futurologists who have gathered at the Hilton Hotel in Costa Rica to stave off planetary disaster.
September 14 2016, 7:50am | Comments
Consider a wanderer 10,000 years in the future discovering a strange construction of granite thorns in the New Mexico desert, their points weathered by centuries, their shadows stretching at sinister angles.
September 7 2016, 11:14am | Comments
The US wants to press ahead with asteroid mining, but rights to the riches buried in space are a grey area. How should we draw up rules for harvesting the heavens? “MAGNIFICENT desolation.
July 12 2016, 1:01pm | Comments
If the transhumanists have their way, technology will, slowly but surely, erase metaphorical and physical borders.
June 23 2016, 4:37pm | Comments
Jason Ray thinks the culture of “disaster prepping” is misunderstood.
June 18 2016, 7:38am | Comments
Billions of years in the future, the Time Traveller stands before a dark ocean, beneath a bloated red sun. The beach is dappled with lichen and ice. The huge crabs and insects which menaced him on his visit millions of…
June 15 2016, 5:00pm | Comments
Each week, In Theory takes on a big idea in the news and explores it from a range of perspectives. This week, we’re talking about transhumanism. Need a primer? Catch up here. Charles T. Rubin is author of “Eclipse of Man: Human…
Benjamin Bratton on Speculative Design, an alternative to mainstream Design that complicates the speculative models that underscore our global economy.
Leaving planet Earth isn’t easy. This year, NASA’s Astronaut Candidate Program received a record 18,000-plus applications from highly qualified scientists bent on discovering space’s deep abyss. It will choose a handful, if that.
May 9 2016, 1:16am | Comments
Artificial Intelligence is starting to turn invisible from the outside in — and vice versa. The exact effects and workings of AI technologies are becoming more challenging to perceive and comprehend for humans. Even the experts themselves don’t always fully understand…
April 20 2016, 7:43am | Comments
Bringing children into a disintegrating environment used to be a theoretical fear. Now it’s a very real one The decision whether or not to have a child is one of the bigger ones a person will make in life –…
April 17 2016, 6:02am | Comments
Chris Bishop fears concern over Terminator-style scenarios could deprive humanity of one of the most powerful technologies ever created The promise of artificial intelligence could be lost to humanity because people fear Terminator-style robots and other doomsday scenarios, an expert…
The librarian was nondescript in the way that everyone standing behind a counter is, probably in her 30s, with straight, fox-colored hair.
March 29 2016, 2:35pm | Comments
What makes us different from all these things? What makes us different is the particulars of our history, which gives us our notions of purpose and goals.
March 17 2016, 5:05pm | Comments
Sometimes this failure of prediction is even science fiction's explicit subject. In Isaac Asimov's classic Foundation series, for instance, a brilliant mathematician devises a method of calculating historical probabilities.
February 16 2016, 8:17am | Comments
February 13 2016, 4:20am | Comments
"Radical ecology" has come to mean a kind of left-wing back-to-the-landism that throws off consumer culture and mass production for a pastoral low-tech lifestyle.
January 24 2016, 2:32pm | Comments
From the days of the Acheulean hand-axe on, humans have always had a symbiotic relationship with technology. How far will that relationship go? One haunting vision of the future is provided by the Borg — one of the main villains…
January 7 2016, 4:28am | Comments
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