Stephen Petranek untangles emerging technologies to predict which will become fixtures of our future lives — and which could potentially save them.

Why you should listen

Writer and technologist Stephen Petranek became a reluctant doomsayer when his earliest TED Talk (“10 ways the world could end”) racked up 1.5 million views. But Petranek is in fact an optimist who believes that humanity will escape its predicaments -- literally. Within a century, he predicts that humans will have established a city of 80,000  on Mars: and that not only is that plausible, but it’s also inevitable.

Petranek is the editor-in-chief of the Breakthrough Technology Report, a technology newsletter that ties scientific breakthroughs to investment opportunities. He's the author of the forthcoming TED Book How We'll Live on Mars.

What others say

“Award-winning journalist Stephen Petranek says humans will live on Mars by 2034. Now he makes the case that living on Mars is not just plausible, but inevitable.” — Simon & Schuster

Stephen Petranek’s TED talk

More news and ideas from Stephen Petranek

TED Books

Book excerpt: How we’ll live on Mars

July 9, 2015

Author Stephen Petranek makes the case that humans will live on Mars in the not-too-distant future. He explains how and when this might happen -- and what risks those who head there first might face.

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Infographic: How we’ll live on Mars

July 7, 2015

Humans are off to live on Mars. At least, that's the case journalist Stephen Petranek makes in his TED Book, "How We'll Live on Mars." According to Petranek, the move is no less than an "essential back-up plan for humanity." Here, he shares just some of the factors those who make the first trip will have to manage.

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