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What does your utopian future look like?

Is your utopia a capitalist or socialist economy? Doyou allow freedom? Is the world you know embrace technology but still in touch with culture and tradition and religion? Are yoir people left brained robots, right brained artist, or both.? Do you have a world federation or an earth confederacy? What is your world like by the year 2150?

  • May 18 2013: My utopian future would be neither capitalist nor socialist, it would be an economy based on need where people were not paid to work, but to live. Just to produce and create would be its own reward. People would not own what they produce either, for the product or creation would be owned by everyone else who is producing and creating too. So, for instance, an author would be paid for living, and she/he would write just for the personal thrill of writing. The book written would not be owned by the author, but the society that paid for the upkeep of the author. Thus, the book (or a piece of music, a performance, a film, a technology, a type of medicine etc – anything produced or created) would be free to anyone who wanted to read (use, consume, watch etc) it. This would do away with careers aimed at becoming wealthy, and change them into callings whose goals are creative expression and self-satisfaction. It would mean that in a lifetime we could meet one challenge and then take up another, perhaps by indulging in life-long learning. It would mean sharing knowledge, not hording (and patenting) it. It would mean helping the poor not simply from charity but because we know that improving their lives would make them more productive and creative, and thus help the community as a whole. The political outcome of such a utopian system would be communities bound together through collective action, linked to other communities that contribute to the common good. Social capital produced and used like this ought to increase our chance of conquering diseases, going into space, ending wasteful conflicts, solving global problems etc. How to move from where we are in today to such a utopian future is what we ought to be thinking about and working for now.
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      May 25 2013: Yeah! It would require a fundamental change in our value system, and maybe the beginning would be a deep understanding of the psychological constraints that keep us in fear based bondage to ownership and competition.
      • May 25 2013: Thanks. The way our society works now, we are rewarded (incentivized) for succeeding as owners and competitors; we are given more wealth and power. To change that, society needs to move toward incentivising (praising, supporting, rewarding) people for creating and sharing products, for working hard to meet those personal challenges that add to social capital, and for contributing to society's well-being. A few places we see people sharing (e.g., charitable giving, 'fan fiction', torrents, free lectures/university education online) and we need to expand that tendency, and to praise people for doing the 'right thing' whenever they do. That is changing 'values'. On a political level, these changes might be accompanied by a move from acting to achieve our narrow interests to meeting our shared interests. For instance, society has banned the sale of 'blood diamonds', and has outlawed slavery, it has passed rules about international human rights and granting asylum to refugees, etc. So, we can globally agree to do the right thing now and again. But we are weak when it comes to halting abuse inside another nation's borders (where tyrants hide behind 'national sovereignty') and we can't seem to get our act together to tackle climate change globally (ensuring all abide by the rules needed to halt it). So, there are some structural and legal frameworks that need to be addressed as well as changing our values. To me, its a matter of getting the 'incentives' right, and when we do they will motivate people and societies to change. How far away is that future?
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          May 25 2013: Great food for thought - thanks.
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    May 16 2013: Free education, no poverty, no war, no racism. Kind of world everyone can walk hand in hand like bro and sis :)
  • May 16 2013: It doesnt have to be capitalism or socialism in the future. In fact, with robots, 3d printing and Watson systems coming, the old definitiions of economies based on captilsm or communism will be replaced. A change will be needed to distribute the benefits of society that will no longer be based on paying for labor or allocations based on perceived needs. I hope that the replacement will be merit based. Where rewards based on acheivements on many levels will provide incentives to learn more amd improve society. Where crowd designed and rated goods replace state mandated designs to fulfill the needs of the many over the needs of the elite few. I cant see how this would all work but hope the future brings the answers.
  • May 20 2013: From reading in many posters here, I realized that many emphasized earth/environment friendly measure or practices. Please excuse my verbosity, let me suggest some approach toward a halfway goal to the utopian concept by improving the earth-friendly practice (termed: "terrami") which are quite practical, because they are already existed or are projected within the near future.
    1. "Terrami" housing units
    The government or community planning group should organize a contractor to mass-produce a standardized house unit, all with only reasonable sized rooms and with solar panels and electrically wired thru the whole house to save energy use. There also will be water recycling and waste processing equipments attached to the house. The former is capable of treating the waste water and produce potable water and sanitized water for reuse or for gardening irrigation. The food recycle unit accepts the food or other waste and converts them into dried fertilizer to be used for growing plants in the garden or asking the municipal agency to collect them to be used by other citizens.
    2. Terrami transportation:
    There are only 2 means of transportation by most citizens. The first is the mass transportation. They should be extensively set up so that there wont be long distance travel by the individual riders from their home to the public stations. The more important new improvement is the private transportation tools. It's already in rapid development that a vehicle can travel all (driverless) by itself from a designated spot A to spot B. So for a commuter for working or shopping. the "car" can be used to send the day worker in the morning to the ride on mass transit, but immediately returns to his home after he left by the train. Furthermore, this personal vehicle can be fueled by all 3 modes; solar, electric and manual peddling, if it is made to be very light weight. Imagine how much energy saving and CO2 reduction be made by such setup.
    It can surely be done before 2150.
  • May 19 2013: Capitalism and socialism should absolutely cease being seen as mutually exclusive. I don't think there's is any hope for this world if ideologues continue to carry on as if the Cold War still exist and one must wipe out the other. The US has fallen behind in may ways since the end of the Cold war because it has a delusional element who think the Cold War was "won". Both sides lost for having trashed so much capital and resources and ingenuity into threat of our own extinction. Globalism is a reality and winners in it have hybrid economies that make for entrepreneurial success while providing for the upkeep and welfare of their nations. American ideologues still caught in the time warp believe that it should be "winner take all" and that's what we are seeing, 1% have and 99% have nots. History has shown that people will tolerate that ridiculous inequality only so long. I don't argue for artificial equality enforced by a state, just a hybrid economy where the winners actually consider it a privilege to contribute to the upkeep and elevation of the society. The real truth though is that we are not created beings at all and flaw is the rule not the exception. And one common flaw is the absence of empathy. And wealth seems to follow those who smash others and prefer castles with moats and alligators over safe communities with good schools and public works.
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    May 17 2013: I just traveled back in time from 2150 to reply to your message, because I thought it was a great question. The singularity as you now refer to it really will happen for you. The global intelligence emerged out of our interconnected minds, aided with advanced computing devices and material science in its infancy in your time. Shortly after the global intelligence emerged, we discovered the cure to all diseases and aging, all the energy we could need, and we discovered how to move our consciousness into the cloud. At that point humanity divided into two. Half opted for immortality in the cloud - we call ourselves Immortals now, and the other half opted to live and die of natural causes - they call themselves Naturals.

    We've just figured out how to incarnate as developing humans fetuses - the ideal time is right around week 6 or 7. Once incarnated, we are born, live a whole life, and then recover the consciousness upon death. Some of us are choosing to reincarnate in human form now and live among the Naturals. Our rule though is that when incarnated, you lose all memory of your immortal soul, and no immortal can communicate with you.

    We've become a level 1 civilization and are starting to explore the nearby galaxy, as we can travel at high rates of acceleration now in cyber bodies which let's us travel using relativistic time dilation. I won't ruin the surprise for you about what we've discovered out there so far.

    We've reached the point where we have enough ways of backing up consciousness, that you don't need to worry about losing it. You've always got a good backup.

    Our social structure in the cloud is so different from Naturals' social structures that it's hard to describe concisely, but you might think of it as a world wide civilization in realtime touch with everyone else at the same time, and a culture of living in harmony and love. And such adventures!
    • May 17 2013: This gives me the chills... wish I could be there to see it all.
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        May 17 2013: If you are young enough, it's quite possible you could be there to see it all, if you opt for the immortality part. Many people don't want that for themselves. Ray Kurzweil, the guy who popularized the term 'The Singularity', thinks he may be young enough at age 65.
        • May 18 2013: No thank you, D! Immortality would not be part of my utopia, that's for sure!!
          Perhaps I could see it on a different level, not as a separate human being, but as a unified part of the earth...
    • May 18 2013: i seek 2150, there is still the perception of a separate Self?.....separate from others? separate from nature? Separate from the universe and, in a sense, the Center of the Universe? What is its function? I like Ray. :-)
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        May 19 2013: Here in 2150 we have found that maintaining the illusion of a separate self is necessary for evolving consciousness. The global mind also has its own illusion of a separate self, as being separate from the rest of the universe. The whole universe is conscious, every rock and tree and moon, even empty space.

        When we disconnect from the global consciousness to go exploring, the sense of self is invaluable. Also, we have found that each consciousness will evolve differently and that diversity gives the whole global consciousness strength.
    • May 19 2013: I use to call it cyber-world to my kids. Long before any cloud but the principal was immortality on a chip. Living in a virtual world gave you unlimited power to replicate anything you wanted to experience. At some point you would become so bored, wonder about death and curse the back up systems that disabled any opportunity to pull the plug.
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        May 19 2013: Hi Thor,

        Cyber-world is a good word for it, but we are not limited to living a virtual reality. We are exploring our galactic neighborhood and what we have discovered so far is more interesting than the cyber-worlds we create. There is so much out there to explore, experience, and learn that I can't imagine being bored any time soon. But then again time is infinite, so we have a few choices should someone choose de-animation, or death.

        Although your consciousness is backed up, we do not need to restore that backup should all the living, functioning copies of yourself cease (die). We also have a way of hitting the pause button on your consciousness, which effectively gives you death.

        There is another option too which some find compelling. They choose incarnation in a human body and when that body eventually dies, we recover your consciousness and we ask you if you would like to return to the cloud and global consciousness, or if you choose, we can pull the plug at that point.

        So you've got the plug in your own hands and can pull it whenever you like.
    • May 19 2013: Our world's seem different but for some reason it doesn't sound like much changed!
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    May 23 2013: How far in the future do you mean, and how "real" does that utopian image need to be?

    On the short span:
    - the rise of AI and cyborgs
    - a government that recons with Rawls veil of ignorance, is organised according to knowledge and deep democracy.
    - no tax on labor, but tax on consumption
    - taking the limits of our planet into account when producing and consuming, so we can stabilize our climate within optimal boundaries
    => might be done by 2150

    on the long range:
    - Life forms that have a much more expanded range of emotions, experiences, wisdom, intelligence,... than us who continue to discover and improve, experiment and experience this cosmos in all it's possible aspects. And that I stem in a memory line from it, so I am (part of) one the experiencers.
    - that these long living creatures reach different planets and galaxies
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    May 19 2013: My utopian future is more than an idea, it is an imperative. For the species, man to survive, we must take control of our planet. We are connected. We can easily determine the will of the people. We can now do without representive systems and it's kingdoms and focus on buliding a world order that works. Lets leave the feudal sytem behind an live together as one.
    • May 23 2013: David: as a sort of Historian, I find your idea that we "can easily determine the Will of the People" to be rather self-contradictory. What leader or Dictator did NOT believe he was" determining" the W.o.P?(Pun intended or not?) Hitler? Stalin? Obama? Churchill ? Even Jesus? This is actually what politics has always been about.
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        May 23 2013: I'm going to take a swing at this, albeit a wild one.

        When David meant we do away with a "representative" system, think of it this way. As of today, the general public gets to vote for a government and all decisions that affect life as we know it are taken by these chosen few.

        Think for a second if a secure universal version of Twitter helped the public vote on all issues big and small.

        We wouldn't need a king or a party to rule, but just collective consciousness of humanity.

        And since we're on the concept of Utopia, why limit ourselves by thinking "oh this is not possible" or "it has never been done in the past".
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          May 23 2013: 5 minutes ago: Yes, Arun. You understand the concept. The will of the people can also be called the collective consciousness. Polling the voters is the only way we (humanity) can take control of our world. The dictators, elected or otherwise, will always have obligations to their supporters. That puts the supporters in charge.
          Plebiscites are becoming more and more common. We vote on issues rather that delegate others to speak for us. This system is used to some degree in 24 states in the U.S. and is in control in Switzerland, where voters can overrule the legislators and even dump them, by private initiative. They are doing very well economically.
          Would there have been an Iraq war, if the voters had been consulted? I think not. According to Abe Lincoln democracy is OF the people, BY the people. Before the internet, the representative system was the best we had. Things have changed. We can now easily determine the will of the people.
          This is far different from a military dictatorship where the rulers declare the will of the people. This IS the will of the people. Do not expect the holders of power to support the concept. They fear the collective consciousness. War is only good for the few who are enriched by it and by the corporations that have the government in their pocket. We are under the control of an obsolete political system. What can we do? Move towards polling voters for all decisions and letting the representatives, who rarely represent their constituents best interests, stay home.
          This can be easily implemented by polling the voters and when a large enough percentage of the electorate is involved, the results of the poll will first be considered by the elected, then empowered as in Switzerland.
          Go to Wikipedia and check out direct democracy. It was there at the birth of democracy and is an integral part of its structure. The existing system is just a system and all systems are subject to improvements as intelligence evolves.
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          Jun 1 2013: I just put up an idea about an hour ago about voting through Facebook and Twitter type social networks! I'm so happy to see that someone else is already getting the thought out before i did! Its a great idea to let everyone vote on everything instead of electing a representative that most like will be corrupted or manipulated by someone or something that can fatten up their pockets. All this seems to be leading to a communist or socialist type society BUT it wouldnt be because of peoples state of mind. State of mind is unbelievably powerful and we should realize we can tell someone to do something or we can show them why they should do it. For instance, you can tell your child to clean their room and they might be upset about that BUT if you explain to your child that if your room is messy you might not be able to find your favorite toy. Now do you think that child would let their room get messy? What if they applied this ideal to the whole world? What do you imagine someone with this mindset would do as an adult in a position of power?
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    May 16 2013: The President of the United States is a gay Iranian.
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    May 16 2013: A positive paradigm shift in our GREED based today's model that's my utopia.
    • May 19 2013: Maybe start with a culture shift towards making the ostentatious display of personal wealth obscene?
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    • Jun 16 2013: It all begs many questions...

      Do you mean we need to abolish thermodynamics?
      What would you do with people suited for non-creative work?
      How do you practice/excercise something online that is actually physical?
      How do you deal with people that are less social?
      How do you ensure that the computers don't make a mistake? Or their programmers? What about malicious modifications? (Hey, let's go full Asimov here. Good luck!)
      How do you draw a line between mental illness and healthy, but unusual, minds?
      Not being able to cross long distances would reduce physical sociability, is it really what anyone wants? How doesn't it conflict with "more sociability"?

      This whole idea sounds like going against freedom and diversity, like many utopias.
      Each of those questions warrants a TED talk, probably been done a few times as well.

      If cornucopia is what you're after, why not go into space, where there's lots of various materials for most purposes imaginable and not?
      Yes, I know, we lack good enough propulsion (to get there in reasonable timeframe) and cryonics or worldships. (to not get mad from the wait)
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        • Jun 16 2013: You will be limited on raw materials, even if you go to fusion for an energy solution. (And there's nothing better thought up yet. Maybe there's something better, but we don't know it.) No, solar is not good enough for current numbers of people on one planet..

          People are not machines, yes, but nobody is either perfect or equal. Some people do one thing better, others do another. Cooperation is actually very much required - and for that, free flow of information combined with ease of access.
          Currently vast amounts are still hard.

          Successful is one, but what about well-being? We don't even know really how that works...

          You don't practice from an online video. You need to actually do the thing that's explained, which makes e.g. practicing housebuilding quite hard. Or for example practicing, say, surgery without a phantom. Yes, you could argue that in a perfect world of nanotechnology you could dream up anything and download a physical object to practice on. Still needs resources.

          Assuming that utopia is perfect because it's an utopia is a tautology. I prefer realistic solutions.

          No, I don't have anything else in mind. Any idea will have flaws and drawbacks, therefore there's no ultimate utopia. I haven't figured one complex enough for me to not poke flaws in it.

          It would definitely have to involve:
          a) enough resources by both technological means and distribution through space
          b) enough communication to keep cohesion (hard! speed of light is a problem)
          c) ability to make anything just given enough energy

          Even mine is flawed by the old conundrum of whether really making anything is good and will not cause large scale harm by some misguided effort of someone.

          Ehh, why is the conversation time limited? I'd love no time llimits.
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    Jun 15 2013: One where each religion accepts that their Prophets, Messiahs and Avatars were ordinary people with a larger knowledge and each one only had a part of the truth.
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      Jun 15 2013: This concept shall be established not only within religion, but be the law for all kinds of "prophets" in every field of our activities and knowledge.
  • Jun 2 2013: I believe my utopian society would be built not around perfecting its laws and its capabilities of governing it's population, but the population govern themselves individually. People would treat others as they would want to be treated. Individuals would work for the society not because they themselves would benefit from it but because the society benefits from it. They would be awarded for what they do instead of what they own; especially since what you own is usually the payment of work. Education would incorporate and teach philosophy, morals, reasonable and logical thinking and why they should do things alongside the knowledge of how to do things. The government would have an open-mind and would be open to possibility and change, while the leaders of the society would be picked for their compassion, logical reasoning, open-mindedness and morals (essentially Plato's philosopher-king). They would live without as many commodities as beds, extremely quick transportation, and sterile environments to live in. People would walk or ride a bicycle at least to the community transport to go places. People would become extremely healthy and strong compared to walking to your car and driving somewhere. Obesity would be completely demolished. Immune systems would be iron strong. If people didn't wear shoes, your feet wouldn't be so tender. Instead of manipulating your surroundings to your whim, you would learn to live with it. The brightest light is found in the darkest places because you adapt to the darkness and the light is then that much more brighter. Rich people are rarely happy because they become used to having so much money. i believe you should have to qualify as a parent before you can have children: to prevent child abuse, neglect, and overpopulation of the society to some extent. Nature has its own way of fixing overpopulation. WAR. Is the prevention of some life better than mass murder? Utopia will have to incorporate a lot of philosophy..
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      Jun 4 2013: I agree with a large amount of what you write, Robert, especially your last sentence. However, qualifing as a parent would be done how exactly? What will child abuse be considered by then? I remember what it use to be compaired to what child abuse is considered today. Is this a test? Is there a study guide? Can the test be retaken, how many times? Can only master minds reproduce? Would it be better to qualify a sperm and egg? Ha! I don't know if I would want to be in a world of such perfection. Who would be the person in charge of the test?
      • Jun 4 2013: I would think that if a couple would want a child, they would just have to prove their determination and prove that they will take care of the to-be child in question and understand the responsibility and cause and effect of having a child. Its a proposition not likely to be needed in a utopian society, but perhaps needed in a more dystopian society. Also, i believe their are two types of parents. The Biological parents that pass on their genes, appearances, and such, and the parents that pass on their knowledge, wisdom, habits, and views of the world and who protect and take care of the child. The latter parents can include teachers and friends and most biological parents. The society would probably try to figure out how people should pursue happiness and what would be correct morals and teach each other their findings and strive for growth. As i said before i believe that happiness, sadness, and degree of lifestyle is changeable. People adapt to their surroundings and should strive to adapt to lesser/ worse conditions (as in challenging oneself) so that they may grow.
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      Jun 15 2013: Thank you for sharing with your wisdom.. It is extremely rare to hear one openly seeing our mad society in all "bloom", but still thinking soberly, and thoughtfully, about our possibilities. I agree with Everything you suggest. Since our society has decided to follow the old fool Plato, and adopted his "ideal" recipes and deadly-stiff systems for life, blindness has been leading people to the wars and man-made disasters to this very day.

      The fundamental concepts of Heraclitus' unavoidable Change, and Protagoras' Limitations of our Perceptions need to be introduced in our elementary schools. We learn only while adopting to nature's changes, we survive and evolve only when we change ourselves, accordingly to this natural experience.

      Our society today keeps producing endlessly idiotic "products" from "exciting" food to "interactive" technology, building its "economy" based upon this global factory of entertainment. Looks like the very dead-end of our human world... In spite that we gulp endless tons of food and get entertained all day long, we have immeasurable need for this crazy entertainment, it is the result of our postmodern human illness. The physical lack of nourishment and emotional starvation, both problems have been developed by our artificial isolation from nature. We live in overcrowded places, surrounded by tremendous noise, bad air and high walls, we do not know who we are, and we do not know any better..

      We learn only when we can compare - we need to start building new small communities suggesting different life style, alternative education, new skills, new ethics..... and provoke people to think for themselves.
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    May 31 2013: The Venus Project. Its not perfect and they tell you that but its a hell of a lot better than what we have today and its possible right now with the technology and combined effort of the world.
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    • Jun 1 2013: Martin Luther King... baby... Martin Luther King.
    • Jun 1 2013: Wow, why didn't i think of that? But I truly agree- if everyone of us maintained our child-like innocence, our world will be much better off.
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      May 25 2013: An excellent post! I sometimes think that we are just one or two steps away from a psychological understanding of ourselves that will free us from the bonds of our fear laden conditioning.
    • Jun 16 2013: How do you figure out which kind of happiness is better than the other?
      Our minds are perfectly happy with many disastrous things that nudge dopamine receptors. (many drugs)
      [Actually, I know a way, gauge network effects perhaps.] The main pitfall of maximizing total happiness is that it doesn't consider unpredictable future, only now and perhaps predictable future.

      What does "humane" entail? Has anyone ever fully answered that question?

      Do you want to force everyone to participate? Why and how?
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    May 19 2013: "It the best society, the rich take public transportation."

    I cannot tell you the economic structure nor can I really suggest any good image, but what I do know is what will be the difference between humans destroying our planet or not.

    We need a society which is pushing for values of the futurist, science fiction writers, transhumanist and overmen. Simply, we need two major ideas to be the goal of every individual alive today - the Venus Project (or something like it) and the ideals of Star Trek: to explore space to know our place in the universe and to guarantee our species survival by opening our arms as big as possible to other life forms. In a world we realize humans are all the same, will be the world we realize the platinum rule should not be a rule but second nature, an instinct. To treat a stranger like you would a family or friend, without second thoughts, would be an exercise of utopian attitudes. While 'society' and 'culture' are the main issues in these questions of utopians, individual responsibility is where most stress is needed - not how society should function, how individuals should function in society.
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    May 19 2013: My thoughts are like most of the comments here. I believe one of the first steps to this utopia is less competition among each other in the work force. This derives from my personal career experiences. Our basic needs and well being should not be judged on how well we compete with others.

    20 hours a week being free (being a kid again) and 20 hours of what we now call a J-O-B. Everyone would be employed. We may begin to find our utopia in our J-O-B again :)

    How do we get there from here is what we should answer.
    • May 20 2013: More than a century of progress reducing the workweek. 6 day and 12 hour days were not uncommon at the turn of the past century. Holidays, maternity leave, unemployment insurance and similar entitlements did not exist. The Industrialists. tycoons and bankers of the day would have thought you insane to suggest 4 day 35 hour workweeks with long weekends, 3 weeks holidays, sick days , pensions and so on. Yet our economy boomed. Leisure industries and other pursuits stimulated more economic activity. Somewhere around the mid eighties the wage slavers retook control and today people are working more hours than decades ago for a lower standard of living. I suggest getting back on track to reducing the hours we work for others rather than ourselves. Mandatory retirement and shorter hours would go a long way to alleviating the youth unemployment problem.
  • May 19 2013: Capitalism has failed but some of the best practices linger on. So do they from other belief systems. They have been incorporated into an open source economy and communities. Profits are distributed more equitably. Communities are focused on providing infrastructure and encouraging creative development. The Victorian concept of work has long ago been displaced by automation. Human labor is of no value. Human creativity is in great demand. Anyone can participate in open source projects and receive credit for any contribution that adds value. Many do not as they are busy with their own projects, caring for children, engaging their community , social events, athletics, classes, micro gardens, and family/home in general. They are too busy living to understand how people in the past had to spend 50-60 hours a week engaged in redundant activities. Make work projects they called them. Then again they did not live through the troubles when unemployment resulted in poverty for blue and white collar workers. Professional, administrative, manager and director levels of the corporate world could not thwart the development of intelligent open source technologies and consequently the upper classes also began to join the ranks of the unemployed. The social assistance systems became over strained. Desperate people caused an ever increasing need for police, security, prisons and social workers . An overburdened legal system and underfunded government began to collapse. Open source technologies and systems drove costs continuously lower, minimized profit margins and displaced human labor. Only when we realized that the same systems could be used to govern did it become obvious it was more efficient , cost effective and humane to provide everyone the necessities of life and create communities that focused on the betterment of it citizens. The path to utopia?
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      May 25 2013: To me this path looks very interesting and possibility laden - I can see it as being at least a part of a solution, but how does it deal with the dragons who profit from economic and social control?
      • May 26 2013: Some dragons will remain but be far more visible and accountable. Others will become redundant and fade away as much of aristocratic society did. Some will become media stars and tourist attractions as some Royalty has.
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          May 26 2013: My inclination is to believe that the increased transparency that is becoming possible due to technology will move us along in a very positive direction.
  • May 17 2013: Let me also comment on the immortality question. If the new world with all the people being conscious of our environment and our obligations to our fellow men/women, and were happy and content with no fear of being oppressed or harmed intentionally, we would naturally LIVE LONGER AND IN BETTER HEALTH CONDITIONS AS WELL.
    However, if everybody wishes to live forever, then how would the earth support more and more humanity, unless we stop to reproduce our own offspring? That's selfishness which is definitely detrimental to the utopia concept.
    If I am allowed to make my own decision, I would gladly leave the world contentedly and peacefully to give room to our offspring without any regret.
    • May 19 2013: Possibly a malthusian viewpoint but I do agree. In either case immortality would become Hell once the only thing left to ponder was what happened to all the dead people?
  • May 17 2013: Everything is perfect the way it is.
    • May 18 2013: you see
    • May 18 2013: In your world poverty does not count I suppose!
      • May 19 2013: In my world view golden bars are uglier than empty stomachs.
        Poverty isn't a handicap and has nothing to do with happiness and freedom.
        We all exist for each other. Poor are those who cant realize that.
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    May 17 2013: Its a wonderful world.
    • May 18 2013: But for all the wonder people are starving. Is this wonderful too?
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      May 19 2013: G'day FA

      It is indeed a wonderful world, it's humans that make it otherwise.

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    May 16 2013: I think a utopia is very much a personal paradise, any type of collective paradise would be so uniform.

    Utopia is a possibility at this very moment, if I'm as happy as I believe I can be.
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    W. Ying

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    May 16 2013: . .
    It is the future without invalid (harmful) happiness.

    Invalid happiness makes us greedy.
    Greed stops us going to utopia.
    • May 18 2013: Good idea but incomplete.

      Greed is part of what drives us to consume but lazyness is what stops us producing enough! These two natural features of our nature are opposites (oximogan) and it is the combination of them that we apply to our lives in the subject that some (more studied people) call macroeconomics.

      "Man seeks to satisfy his endless desires with the least exertion" Henry George--Americal economist 1879.
      • May 19 2013: Bill Gates has been quoted as saying ""I choose a lazy person to do a hard job. Because a lazy person will find an easy way to do it." ...
        Multiple generations trained for jobs that are being displaced by automation and intelligent software systems at exponential rates. A governing class that cannot accept the shift because the idea of losing their workers is akin to when the Aristocrats of the feudal age lost their serfs. Industrialists and their support networks are proving to be very resistant to redundancy.
        What stops us producing enough is that we're not being motivated to produce more art, poetry or great literature and that there are few positions relative to supply and demand that would accelerate building of inclusive sustainable and healthy communities. We still have a system which fails at recognizing what should be profitable. .
  • Jun 15 2013: In the future.. The earth will be ravaged by global warming and overpopulation and the rich and greedy people will leave in space-ships while the kind and logical people are pushed to the side and left to rebuild earth into a beautiful world.
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    Jun 15 2013: The outdated Golden Rule needs to be changed: Never treat others as you would like to be treated yourself -- unless they agree to it first --because what is good for you may be damaging for others.

    Just in order to survive the good thinking people have a ton of work to do - firstly, every one of us has to try to develop our minds and mentality, and understand that our technology only indicates how mindlessly needy and immensely lost our undeveloped bodies and minds are. Technology is unable to fix these things, it is only about crotch walking.

    Who trusts technology, dreams, who learns to sense and wisely interact with the nature's given world, awakes. I'm trying to build a unique futuristic community to explore and nurture new mentality. I want to build this place for practicing alternative ethical, economic, and educational concepts and solutions based on precious old tradition and wisdom, innovative ideas and advanced research. This community is designed to respect natural environment and serve individuals, not to brainlessly control masses. Sustainable, means flexible systems, are designed to support highly diverse micro-economy, and inspire denizens to be as thoughtfully creative as they can be.. I want to believe that it is Not Utopia.
    Thank you so much for reading, Robert! I really appreciate it. Vera Nova

    “Come friends, it's not too late to seek a newer world.”
    ― Alfred Tennyson
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    Jun 15 2013: We shall learn this basic law of nature: "The shoe that fits one person pinches another; there is no recipe for living that suits all cases."
    Carl Jung
    • Jun 15 2013: agreed. everyone is different and has different views on what make them happy and what utopia is.
  • Jun 14 2013: First I must apologize, you see the more I learn the more I cant ever see a utopia ever happening. It's depressing. Really depressing.

    * After really learning about the banking crisis, the way reserve banks work, the massive volatility in the currency markets, and the m.o behind it. The way the IMF and World bank are not there to "help" but rather destroy.

    * Only to then be hit with the NSA and their trouncing of the constitution - and what 'will' happen to the Whistleblower.

    * Then to be hit with Obama has signed more dictatorial "executive orders" than the sum of all presidents before him.

    * Then to he hit with the planned ongoing daily drone attacks, with no end in sight.

    * Realizing that the Afgan war is now over a decade long, again with no end in sight.

    * With GMO's not being labeled so you can make an informed choice, because some corporation buys government influence.

    * Reading that now, not car accidents, not heart attacks, but suicide is America #1 killer.

    I really sorry, I but the only place I can see a utopia ever happening my mind. And maybe that's the very reason for many for the last line item. Maybe we all need to move to Arkansas.
    • Jun 15 2013: You seem to be believing not that utopia can't ever exist, but that it can't exist in America. Not where America is now and where it is going. America is definitely not utopia. And maybe utopia could never exist. But i believe that we can perfect our understanding of utopia and at least try to create it. It would include a lot of comprehending human nature, and creating a society that allows each individual the most help on pursuing their own happiness without obstructing others' and getting the most out of life.
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      Jun 15 2013: Sorry to hear your loss of hope.

      The things you've listed are very discouraging.

      Perhaps there are more ways of looking at the situation.

      The NSA, well in the end, there WAS a whistleblower who brought huge publicity, capitol hill is outraged, and americans get another strong dose of the reality that the government isn't really working for them anymore.

      Maybe this will be the straw.
      Or the next thing will be.
      More people are learning to question what's going on around them. The dissatisfaction is more tangible.

      Maybe right now is the best time to discuss the utopia in your mind and mine and to reevaluate what people think the world should be like and and how it actually is.

      The dream of what it should be is a reminder and guide for where we go from here. I'd love to have a utopia discussion in congress before every session.
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    Jun 13 2013: My utopia is Diana Cammack's. I spend most of my time looking up, dreaming, planning, discussing, the intermediary steps to achieve it.
    A direct democracy system. Solar power and power from continuous microwave catalytic depolymerization which extracts and utilizes the methane and syngas that would result from decomposition of waste anyway, it gives a biochar byproduct which we use to make terra preta to fertilize the cooperative farm which is in the green space between buildings in the city and just enough surrounding land to feed all the people there.

    All humans move to these self sufficient cities and live in comfort in mixed use buildings with a hospital and school and retail. The apartments are interspersed within the vertical farm that is part of the cooperative. Each building's population is dense enough to be able to afford the sports fields and equipment required for them. The same population is dense enough that it makes a subway stop there viable. It's not a kibbutz in that everyone shares their income , they don't have to eat in the collective cafeteria, and the kids are not separated from their parents.

    "It takes a village to raise a child" still applies because they are exposed to the multiple careers, disciplines and hobbies of the numerous residents. Parents no longer have to schedule playdates and organise activities as all you need to do to have friends is open the door and step outside.

    Grandparents no longer have to choose between being a burden on their children and getting professional care at a nursing home and long for their family to take time out to visit them. the hospital downstairs can send nurses up the elevator to help. They don't have to wait to be entertained by volunteers as they can just take the elevator down to the school and volunteer and feel useful and still contribute to society.

    A lot more of it in my head using existing technology, but I'm out of space.
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    Jun 4 2013: Small possible step to consider. The amount of knowlege in a library lacks the tools required to put the knowlege gained to use. For example, Imagine if the government supplied us the tools needed to make solar shingles at every local library rather than tax rebates for the rich. An option to buy DC appliances as well because every time inverted 10% power is lost. Alternative energy sources is very very possible in the near future.
  • MR T

    • +1
    Jun 2 2013: Im my utopian future I am supreme dictator of the world and do what I want.....

    However people have conflicting interests so ones idea of utopia may be different to another's
  • May 26 2013: utopia? i guess it's good to dream.

    we already have achieved world peace in the sense that grudges held by one country with another have stopped and that the massive killings most especially in the middle east have been resolved. if there is any chance that chaos will still rise over peace, i'd say this utopian world of mine senses the need for urgency to resolve whatever problems abound in the society.

    we already have embraced technological improvements without disregarding the need and the responsibility to care for the environment. the long standing battle between economical progress and environmental degradation has stopped. instead of being so progress driven for the human race, people in my utopia all have hearts to consider the feelings of the environment along the way to achieving fourfold progress.

    well, those are the two main things i prioritize :)
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    May 22 2013: In Catopia

    1. No one will ever be, or ever want to be, a liar, ever again. Everyone will eschew liars. They will never, ever, ever want to be a liar or have anything to do with liars. They will disdain lying. They will never, ever, ever again want to sink to the level of being a liar.

    2. Everyone will always want to take full responsibility for their actions, always.

    3. No-one will ever think of taking profit at someone else's expense, period. The thought that they did that in the past will be like an open wound in their hearts for a long, long, time.

    4. No one will ever want to be a coward of any kind. They will not want to be the kind of person who would ever lower themselves to cowardly acts.

    5. When people take life and substance to live, they will deeply and humbly understand and honor the sacrifice of the life that gave them life.

    6. No one will ever do to others as they would not have done to themselves. They wouldn't think of it.

    7. Everyone will always and without exception do unto others as they would have others do unto them.

    Anyone who doesn't fit the bill gets the boot.
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      May 23 2013: Your mother suffers an acute heart attack, and at the same time your brother met with an accident.

      According to you, no one should ever ever ever lie. Would you tell your ailing mom that her other son met with an accident in the fragile state she is in?

      If you tell her the truth, you will elevate stress levels, increase likelihood of a fatal attack.
      If you lie to her, you buy some time during which her health improves and will be in a state to handle the truth.

      Would you boot yourself out of society for saving your mom for the sake of a lie?
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        May 25 2013: Hello Arun,
        Thanks for your excellent reply. My answer it turns out is too long to fit in one reply so instead of dealing with connecting multiple threads I made a blog post for you. One caveat: I never blogged before, so its just there, I haven't learned any of the arts of formatting, etc. It came thru a little odd in that respect. And its not really that long, 800 words, so hope you have the time to peruse it!

        Kind of new on TED stuff too, hope this link works:
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          May 27 2013: Hello Cat,

          I took time out to read your entire blog. This is the first time someone has started a blog as a consequence of my question! I am honored indeed!

          The entire goal of my comment was to elicit a response on the "grey area" notion of most of life. Many many instances exist where there isn't really a right answer which also points to what I would refer to as "imperfect knowledge".

          In these scenarios, man must make a choice. This choice could be lying, if my imperfect knowledge tells me the outcome has a beneficial effect.

          But I totally vouch for the fact that lying is a slippery slope. Unfortunately, truth loses its power if deceit were absent.
          Just like light has a role when darkness is its opposite. Truth has a place only in a world with lies.
          Imagining a world with only one side is negating the whole.

          P.S: I will respond in more detail in the blog, I think this space won't do justice to the complexity of the question.
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        May 27 2013: This is a very good question. You're saying that lying is not always the wrong thing. However, think of it this way: 1. Even if you lie to your mom, there is no guarantee that your mom will improve her health.
        2. Do you think you can lie to your mom forever? I mean, what if she says she desperately wants to see your brother?
        3. After recovering, when your mom sees that your brother is seriously injured, don't you think that she will suffer from great amount of sadness from the fact that she didn't even know her own son was injured and couldn't help him?
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          May 27 2013: Thanks for your thoughts Hong,

          While all your questions are totally valid and don't really have a right answer, my intention behind the questions is the same as I've stated in reply to Cat above.

          When we don't have complete knowledge of outcomes, we tend to have to pick what we think the best course of action is.
          A sick mother with a delicate heart has a higher probability to be susceptible to stress on day 1.
          If I deliver the truth to her 2 days later, probability of a worse reaction is lower.

          Now how right this train of thought is, is once again debatable. But if this is used as the basis of making my next decision, risking my mother's life for a truth seems too big a price.

          And at no time, do I guarantee the future will be better, just a higher probability of it being so.
  • May 19 2013: I do not hold t the illusion of Utopia, but there steps
    That I would take to ensure human dignity!!!
    Clean Water, good food, modern human housing,
    Energy, access to information and good health
    Care/maintenance should be guaranteed as a function
    Of ones humanity wether expenditure of ones wealth.
    Will there still poor people? Of course.
    Will people still do stupid stuff? You betcha!
    Will poets and playwrites songwriters and journalist
    Still have the"human condition" as a source of Inspiration?
    But we would demonstrate a mutual , humane treatment of
    One another and that is about as good as our species can get
    Anytime soon!!!
    He'll that would be pretty good!

  • May 19 2013: You just wait until your children are without shoes, crawling with lice and you cannot find sufficient food for them (or yourself), and then you will understand about poverty.
  • May 18 2013: 1. No religion
    2. Acceptance that we are finite
    3. Equal Respect for every living thing
    4. An end to animal being used as a food source
    5. A new economic model which puts the welfare of all people at the heart rather than money
    6. Fulfilment of self
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    May 18 2013: A Utopia 2150 is an earth that can regulate its own temperature. The earth itself is bionic, like man, who can integrate metal into his body parts to make him stronger, like half man, half machine, combined to prolong life, and life itself is regulated. People have the right to die whenever they want. Population is controlled to a balance number of people but sex is free (yet, no religious contamination). Birth control and contraception is part of life. Because the earth is able to self-regulate, there will be plenty of water and food for everyone. No child has to go hungry. Countries no exist. There is one earth federation. Earth is a country or a planet without border. Most people on the planet would have mixed race, so it doesn't make sense to have countries. Everyone intermarries and the children are all mixed and multi-racial (so race no longer exist as a determinant factor for dividing us). By then, we would have contact with other lives on other planets so it's necessary to have a planetary federation. Earth is a country. Diet include bugs that are cultivated. Biodiversity increased. Robots will be integral part of human life.
  • May 18 2013: A world where there is equality of opportunity between people to earn and enjoy the results of the labor of the person within the particular household.

    Today this situation does not exist due to the opportunities for work being monopolized and very unequally shared. To change this situation a government needs to change the tax laws and to tax land values instead of earnings, purchases and capital gains. All produce basically comes fro access to the land and its value determines how useful it is for making goods or for providing residence.

    Urban land is most valuable so the center of town being the most useful needs to be most heavily taxed. Rural land being far away from population centers is much less productive and much more of it is needed to make the same value of goods than a site in town might produce. Consequently the rural land is scarcely taxed at all.
  • May 18 2013: Lol,The whole society all people are in good education:they all concern the whole society,they feel honor to contribute to the society.
  • May 17 2013: Let me make a stab at what will be the utopia form in 2150 (or probably another century away from then):
    First, the possibility of such "dream" is rather remote, unless we could find a technique of eugenics, i. e. to alter/modify the genetic constitutions of human , or of the newborns, mentality in selfishness, greed, violence, or that of a sneaky weasel. Alternatively, some aliens from the outer-space could come and do it for us.
    Once the eugenics is achieved for everybody, there are very few functions for a global government at that time, because there won't be needs for national defense/diplomacy. Also management of natural resources could be left with the regional governments. There would be few regional conflict or fighting because the refined humanity of the world citizens simply should no longer be contaminated with materialistic or emotional prejudice among the regions or the neighbors. Furthermore, there are no needs for a global government to tax and maintain a welfare system since that would be taken care of either by the regional governing body, or even by individually managed charities, because without the risk of corruptions, it would certainly be more efficient for local handling for the fair distribution.
    So, in other word, there won't be much needs for a central "anything" , thus this would save a lot of wastes in the handling of the current government functions. There should be periodic administrative meetings by a group of local or regional elders to take care of local issues. There will be global judicial or legislative bodies to bodies to take care of a few laws and regulations, but these meetings won't take too much time because the citizenry are not that much unruly or unsatisfied as we currently have.
    By the way there could be an emergency meeting of global assembly of elders only when we predict an eminent danger of invasion by an alien spaceship or a huge meteor falling to the earth. :=)
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    Gord G

    • +1
    May 17 2013: It looks better than today. ;-)
  • May 16 2013: I like your first question: Is your Utopia a Capitalist or Socialist Economy?

    Does the question reflect our Dualistic reality and perception?

    Is Utopia perhaps beyond Dualistic Perception? Can our Minds even Conceive of what that may be like?

    Would we simply do better by lowering our expectations and simply stop destroying the "Nature" that we perceive ourselves separate from?
  • May 16 2013: FREEDOM. People express TRUTH as they behold it at the moment of expression. Positive prevails everywhere. We are all feeling good and having a whole lot of fun.
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    May 16 2013: Where people will work only to eat and not to hoard like a lion or a bird.

    Rest of the time they will remain close to their mother, mother nature. There is bounty out there, so much to see , so much to exlpore, so much to be happy.
  • May 16 2013: Let's don't be realistic - Dead in less than thirty years Could that be utopian? Realistic but not utopian.
    • Comment deleted

      • May 18 2013: I just saw the movie - sort of negative, but the hero saved the day. Einstein made a similiar prediction of the future.
  • Keith W

    • +1
    May 16 2013: ANARCHO-CAPITALISM IS THE FUTURE.. Yup the future i think will have very little government and very little need for it. Eventually the whole world will be "Developed" and everything from education to local law enforcement will be free-marketed driven by consumer demand and accountable to those willing to vote with their dollar.
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    May 16 2013: Star Trek Universe. Probably not possible, but hey, we were talking about Utopias right?
  • Jun 15 2013: My Utopian future is a post-scarcity (meaning: money do not exist), libertarian society. I'd love to live in the world described by the much missed Ian M. Banks in his Culture novels
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    Jun 14 2013: I don't really see Sharia law as being part of any future Utopia. Not at all. I am given to understand that the Wahabbi sect of Islam has tried to sell many people on this particular idea. That is: Sharia law for all mankind = Utopia. Also, maybe the Taliban has done the same thing in some places. Or maybe just Al Qaeda. Not sure. But there does seem to be a lot of "Utopian" talk about that kind of thing here on TED. And notions of Utopia and Sharia law - Islam seem to be connected in the ideas expressed by some here in these conversations. Am I wrong about that?

    Am I the only one who has made this observation? If so, I am very willing to be corrected on my mistake, here. Correct information is always better than no information or just a bunch of mistaken ideas about things. You can't always count on what you hear about Islam being the truth. Even if you find that information on an "official looking" web site that quotes extensively from the Holy Quran. Even that can be misleading.

    Christianity has the same problem. If you look at a Catholic Web site first, and then you go to a Methodist or Southern Baptist web site, you immediately notice two things. First, they have very different views on almost everything from politics to philosophy to psychology. The moral values are similar enough, but all the rhetoric and philosophy is not the same. Second, although they seem to both be Christian, they sometimes don't even seem to worship the same God.

    I guess it's like the 4 blind men trying to describe an Elephant. The guy who found the trunk thought the Elephant was like a snake. The guy who found the leg thought the Elephant was like a tree. The guy who found the ear though the Elephant was like the great leaf of a huge tree. And the blind guy who found the tail thought the Elephant was like a broom. Same Elephant; 4 different descriptions.
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      Jun 15 2013: Christian, Hindu, or Sharia law is nowhere near my utopia either. Of course they promote it. Religions in general have a utopia, heaven, shangrila which is the ultimate goal and the path to it is through their particular teachings. But as we all know, religion has been the cause of horrible injustice throughout history and even now. I'd love to see people decide that they'll let god guide them when s/he decides to step in and do the guiding, but for the here and now, we'll work it out in human terms.
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        Jun 15 2013: Where religion divides and affirms our prejudices, our fears, and our hatred . . . who needs it. I think I heard the Dalai Lama say that once. ". . . Who needs it!" I can afford to stand with the enlightened Atheists & Agnostics who so vehemently point that out to me (& everyone). They assert that religious bigotry is the primary motivation/justification for their rejection of faith & all religious experience.

        I think I've found that TED is a place where I can at least hear from lots of those people. Those are the people who have all the money and attend all the TED conferences. My willingness to spend time on TED has really challenged my thought upon a great many subjects. And I like that.
  • Jun 11 2013: Question: What does your utopian future look like?

    Conversation: I am glad to see that Utopia is still provide inspiration today as it did in centuries past when in the Age of Queen Elizabeth, "Utopia" was first published in the 16th Century by Sir Thomas Moore.

    The most recent thoughtful wisdom of Utopia discuss was the "scientific utopia" described by Professor B.F. Skinner in his fictional classic book, "Walden Two".

    "Walden Two" was written in 1945 addressed to the GIs coming home from the great War. Book became a best seller during the Vietnam War era when I was a undergrad college student.

    I became inspired by Walden Two and B.F. Skinner's perspective of a science based rural community based on the science of behaviorism. Skinner's behaviorism still remains a significant contribution to the challange of human culture and human behavior.

    The question I have deeply explored in the last decade particularly as to why "Walden Two" never worked as a real community though some were tried while Skinner was still alive.

    I think I know what was missing n Walden Two. In fact I have created a brief Utube Video available to the public asking this
    " Question: Dos Walden Three Really Exists ? " . I would welcome comments on my Utube short video describing a mythical Walden Three that exists near the ancient port city of Cochin, India .

    Multi Cultural society has existed here for more than a thousand years where people with differnt religions , Christians, Hindu, Islam, Jews, in peace. Isn't this an ideal location for a real Walden Three Utopia someday in future ?

    Comments on my Utube video most welcome for deeper conversation that can lead to creative action perhaps based on science of human behavior adoped to experience and wisdom of history.

    " Question: Dos Walden Three Really Exists ? " .
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    Jun 10 2013: Our monetary system to be replaced with a shared resources concept. Everyone could do whatever they wanted. You would be surprised at how many people would give rather than take from others especially when money is taken out of the equation.
  • Jun 10 2013: My Utopian Future is where there is a Gigantic solar powered Battery which is in the troposphere facing the sun moving with the suns rotation which gives power to countrys. Small amount of Nuclear power stations left in the world. Solar powered Cars which Have longer lasting Electric engines. Filters which Heat up salt water to the salt disolves into filter machines which process into fresh water.More trees Planted than building going up . 4D games you put on the head set like a cyclops look gloves which sesores what you picking up reaction to shooting and game boots on a game sensores which way you are walking right or left connected to wireless guns controller or objects walk around simulation a full 360 degrees perseption of what in frond of you and behind you objects wepons enemys how to duck more sesored. Solar domes for every city a big dome of solar panes whith a generator in the Middle supplying solay energy to the citys/ town with a back up generator. Emergency services will be more efficient Full body scanners better medical treatment. Garbage will be Burned in a specialy created machine to create fuel. Sewage would be made compacted and filtered to water used in parks gardens non domistic uses. An International agency to prevent Nuclear War and Intellegence Fitted with long range anti missile range . Building Blocks with Goverment payed buisness for poverty giving them home and helping them with personal or finacial problems. Larger tax for richer nations under contract Only for not unwealthy nations. Health and medical services Education clean living water employment.
  • Jun 1 2013: My utopian society has no government at all. Rather, it is a place where there are no cities, no signs of industrialization, no technology, none of what we consider modern at all.

    In other words, everybody lives simple and one with nature. One hunts his own food, one harvests his own food, and one makes his own house, weapons, etc. Again, all of this is without technology, such as guns. Rather it is with the resources provided by nature.

    Basically, my utopian future is where everybody goes back to being like what Native Americans used to be. I believe that not only will the evil corruption of money and society disappear, an emphasis will also be placed on the concept of the family and of veering away from worldly things.

    Perhaps more importantly, humans will regain their sense of connection of nature. One should notice that now, because of our modern society, we ruthlessly kill of nature while taking it for granted. If this kind of utopian society exists, however, one can learn how to appreciate nature more. Perhaps that is the most important aspect of all of this.
  • Jun 1 2013: There is no the UTOPIA with democracy, monarchy, communism, socialism, capitalism and etc.,
    If you want to construct your own utopia, you have to make sure how it will be,how you work in perfect harmony, what you need, where you put and how many people you need.

    I don't think so.. in the world, there is no UTOPIA.. so far and later. Not 2150, maybe 2000000.
  • Jun 1 2013: Somewhere where... war is not peace, where slavery is not freedom, and ignorance is not strength.

    But with certain laws being passed, excuses being made, I can also see where the alternative version is a possibility.

    There will be no curiosity, no enjoyment of the process of life. All competing pleasures will be destroyed. But always—do not forget this, Winston—always there will be the intoxication of power, constantly increasing and constantly growing subtler. Always, at every moment, there will be the thrill of victory, the sensation of trampling on an enemy who is helpless. If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face—forever.

    So in the end, the world, the utopia, will be the one we all choose to make.

    Day by day, choice by choice, inch by inch.
  • May 27 2013: Arun: I think you are overlooking something important about the "Collective Unconscous", namely that if it should turn out to be actually, literally true , as I suspect, this would have profound effects on the M.O of the group. You can see hints of this in human history already. For example, in our society, "Shame" simply does not work, because , I believe , due to the Ayn Randian belief that Selfishness, no matter how extreme or illegal, is "the way things are", so Wall St. "Leaders" can cheerfully rob the whole society, brag about it, and get them to at least accept it. Whereas, iin Japan, in comparable situations, Shame does work, even to the extent of guilty Seppuku. (if no longer suicide, at least apologies.)
    In many ways, it is a "Family feeling". You do not need representative democracy in a family to function, as long as the members value it, and consider it "Real". Also, "devising an M.O. for C.U.. " sounds strange, as if we had to devise an M.O. for electricity.
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    May 27 2013: I have written a short story on the world I have always dreamed of. If anybody would read it, I would be really glad :(. Anyway, the basic idea is that people would share their pain, in this case, a physical one. If someone trips over and hurts his knee, everybody (living in the same town or the world) would feel the same amount of pain on their knees. I hope you can find one of you answers from my short story, or at least get an idea of how my world looks like.
    • May 31 2013: Hong-Ming, Your idea is admirable, but it not quite practical, I am afraid. First, there is no way that if one person is injured, "all the people in the community will feel the same physical pain". Even this can be done, what is the sense of such outcome anyway. It would be much better to have the towns people who happen to see or heard about the injury and all feel the sense of empathy to the injured person's pain. This is really the essence of utopian spirit. As a matter of fact, THE INJURED PERSON REALLY SHOULD NOT WISH ALL THE TOWNS' PEOPLE TO SUFFER THE SAME AMOUNT OF PAIN LIKE HIS, IN THE UTOPIAN WAY OF CONSCIENCE.
  • May 25 2013: Autocratic super-capitalism; a Social Darwinian advancement structure.
    The only way to get ahead is to work towards your own goals and do what needs to be done. The welfare state will be abolished.

    The autocracy does not necessarily condemn freedom of speech and other rights. I never said that, for the record.
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    May 24 2013: What if we go back and edit, "Be fruitful and Multiply" to just the first part.
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    May 23 2013: Robert I hope you know that you are inferring that Utopia can be obtained.
  • May 23 2013: The land under the sea is useful and the rights to it are not clearly defined. Most nations claim a 3 km authority whilst others may even go as far as 100 km. Beyont that the right to what is under this land seems to be simply to whom can get there the first.

    The point I am making is that all the natural resources including the fish, oceans, under-ground thermal energy, undersea oil and gas, range of electromagnetic wave spectrum (for purposes of communication) should and can be most efficiently shared, when the privilige of holding it out of use is paid for and the value that is contained within it is bettered shared; so that a) everyone in the country benefits equally from its value and b) the amount of unemployment is reduced due the more efficient use and the associated Georgian and modified tax regime.

    And as for the greed of the landlords and their partners the banks, they can go to Hell--if they don't yet realise that investment in capital goods without including land is a better and more ethical policy.
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      May 25 2013: Abolishing the ridiculous principle of privately owned property or even land ownership in any sense would be a great first step.
      • May 25 2013: This kind of utopia seems to be a socialist one. But we have two very good cases for knowing that it doesn't work: the USSR and the kibbutz. What we need is a more open society that is capable of absorbing the rights and not the mistakes of the past!
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          May 25 2013: I really don't want to be an "ist" of any kind - I am looking for and hoping for more heartfelt change, an internalized respect for ourselves, each other, and all the living beings - including the land - that surround us and give us life.
  • May 23 2013: Arun: I wouldn't dispute the Collective Consciousness of Society. The "Wisdom of Crowds" research seems to validate it , as welll as general scientific thinking. But, just as a lot of other civilized activities, it takes a certain amount of social organization to express this, and the larger the "Group" gets, the more complex this process becomes. Now we're looking at a group of about 8 billion people, right? And we are all conditioned to think about our small group, mainly. Psychologists have said the about a hundred people to "know personally" is about all the average person can handle. For the rest , we need some sort of "politics".
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      May 27 2013: I remember stating somewhere else in here, that while dreaming of Utopia, the first step is to let go off all the practical limitations we live in today.

      So as far as thinking about Utopia, devising a modus operandi for how this whole collective consciousness will work out is futile.

      On the other hand, a "representative democracy" is only as representative as the sample that creates it.

      A representative government lead by one person is the least representative while a country that has a cabinet of 50 elected senators is comparatively more representative.

      Generalizing this to the entire population is what I was going for, and by no means have I figured out the details of how, if ever such a system can be in place. But David Hubbard has already given an example of how such a system has been mobilized to good effect in a smaller sized country.
  • May 23 2013: Lizanne and Unmaid

    Power has nothing to do with it, nor politics.

    The world of Umaid must be a strange place indeed where the children are not sent to work (at ten years) in buildings that can collapes with more than 200 fatalities, as recently happened in Bangaladesh. I suppose the lucky ones were those who were only living on the streets and who got their sustence from prostitution and drug traffic!
  • May 23 2013: My utopian world would not include religion, and the meat industry. It would include unlimited clean free energy world-wide So that we can expand our horizons outwards in our solar system. There would be no currency so that we would all strive to work together in unison and want to create a better human civilization and end the democracy we all feel left out of.

    Unfortunately, this will most likely never happen, but it's always nice to dream. :)
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      May 27 2013: This is one of the best long story cut short forms of Utopia I've seen here.

      While giving up currency seems alien to most, Wikipedia is an example of what can be achieved when all we set out to do is create the best we are capable of without expectation of any reward.

      Everyone is the better for it. This doesn't imply socialism or communism, but just "hereismybitfortheworldism".
  • May 23 2013: Christians do not really believe they are immortal. Their World view is completely different from that. And I'm not talking about "being" anything in particular , except interested in an accurate , scientifically oriented Word View.
  • May 23 2013: We live in a Utopia now, compared to many former societies. What has made this possible , really, besides a lot of luck , is the Industrial Revolution, along with cheap coal and oil power for the last hundred years, which is now running out. So my Utopian vision is that we , somehow, take advantage of the recently invented cheap source of power, i.e. Thorium LFTR nuclear fission, which is Green, pretty safe compared to Uranium plants, and has limitless fuel, cheaper than coal. With that, we could rather easily keep on with the "progress" of the past, and not be forced to leave anyone behind, as we are doing now. (Because we "can't afford not to"). With enough civilized, educated people in the world, it would probably occur to them, just for self-preservation, that it would be wise to establish Legal structures to avoid being forced to resort to war to "solve" the simplest political problems, as we do now.
    We need to do all this , so that we can afford to be able to go on with the real adventure, which is to colonize Space, while we still have a chance to do so. This idea of having everyone "just get along" on Earth is just too Utopian to work..
  • May 19 2013: According to Henry George (US economist of 1879 +) we are trying to satisfy our unending needs with the least effort. In a somewhat cruder form, we are both greedy and lazy!

    What Bill Gates is saying is that he wants to see the most economic result of his orders. It has nothing to do with art, although I am sure that he knows that we need to rest and enjoy the break between the times when working hard. But what stops us producing enough is the low demand which is due to the high cost which is strongly associated with the amount that speculation in land values is driving up production costs.

    By taxing land values instead of the wages and the results of production, speculation in land values will not be worthwhile, cheaper and more land will be available and the greater opportunities then possible for entepreneures will benefit all but those who previously held land out of use for selfish gain.
    • May 23 2013: I would have thought that Outsourcing , Offshoring, etc. would have put an end to the idea that Land values are a big factor in "Production" of anything, except vacation resorts.
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    May 19 2013: All currently living conscious entities (including humans) would be as immortal as nature allows. Not original, but very true. This is my utopia. Everything else is secondary. Yes I would prefer an atheist world, a more educated world, and a world where people help each others without the need of a system that oblige them to (like communism or socialism), etc. But in the end, the first and most important thing I want is to be, and stay ;-), immortal!

    PS.: This is not a prediction, this is a wish.
    • May 23 2013: Mathieu:If you were a Buddhist, you would have noticed that your wish is already true, in the natural world.
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        May 23 2013: If I was a Christian too, but I'm not.
  • May 19 2013: Instead of a classic utopia based on preconceived ideas, I propose an xTopia based on the experimental method. “Welcome to your introductory tour of xTopia University.”
  • May 18 2013: This is as close to "Utopia" as I want to get. Utopia would be boring and there would be nothing to give meaning to life. There is no merit or reward without challenge. No Yin without Yang, no positive values without at least the possibility of balancing negative ones.

    American capitalist democracy may be the closest thing to perfection we can or should, want to get - and it is horrible. Churchill's quote comes to mind. We can and should always strive to better it - that is where the reward comes in. Without problems, how do you achieve anything?
  • May 18 2013: 2150. One hundred thirty-seven years from now. Global Burning Man -- An economy of play. Space Travel. High meditative states part of the global culture.

    At a minimum, the existence of free energy. It has been said that this is the one thing that will fundamentally shift the world. No oil politics. Control issues a little harder. But if people no longer wish to be controlled.....
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    May 17 2013: G'day Robert

    I'm with Scott Bell on this, how would we know what a true utopian future would seem like just like the people a thousand years ago couldn't have had any idea of what our world would have been like now, we have not the conscious understanding to do so because our conscious understanding is relying on what we know now not what we are going to know just like a thousand years ago.

    However let me give it a stab. In looking at how fast our consciousness is growing I think we will be somewhat more responsible & wiser with the planet & everything else, I can't see political parties governing but I also can't see a one governing body ruling either but a collective perceptive understanding brought on by a higher consciousness. Laws as such won't exist or have to exist & of course armed forces & even police forces won't be needed.

  • May 16 2013: Robert, did you see Jay Silver's talk? At the very end, he describes his idea of utopia...
  • May 16 2013: Wow, Robert, this is tricky.
    My idea of utopia can never be the same as someone else's. Utopia by definition suggests a 'perfect world', and how can my idea of perfection be sufficient for everyone?

    I would then suggest, a world where everyone is allowed the freedom to live in their own personal utopia, follow their own goals, based on their own idea of success, at their own tempo, on their own terms.

    But, hang on, isn't this also the recipe for anarchy?

    I'm stumped!!