playlist

Alternate timelines of the future

What could be, may be with these talks exploring the implications of tech we're developing now.

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  1. 14:41
    Anab Jain Why we need to imagine different futures

    Anab Jain brings the future to life, creating experiences where people can touch, see and feel the potential of the world we're creating. Do we want a world where intelligent machines patrol our streets, for instance, or where our genetic heritage determines our health care? Jain's projects show why it's important to fight for the world we want. Catch a glimpse of possible futures in this eye-opening talk.

  2. 9:20
    Nnedi Okorafor Sci-fi stories that imagine a future Africa

    "My science fiction has different ancestors — African ones," says writer Nnedi Okorafor. In between excerpts from her "Binti" series and her novel "Lagoon," Okorafor discusses the inspiration and roots of her work — and how she opens strange doors through her Afrofuturist writing.

  3. 22:55
    Zeynep Tufekci We're building a dystopia just to make people click on ads

    We're building an artificial intelligence-powered dystopia, one click at a time, says techno-sociologist Zeynep Tufekci. In an eye-opening talk, she details how the same algorithms companies like Facebook, Google and Amazon use to get you to click on ads are also used to organize your access to political and social information. And the machines aren't even the real threat. What we need to understand is how the powerful might use AI to control us — and what we can do in response.

  4. 12:16
    Robin Hanson What would happen if we upload our brains to computers?

    Meet the "ems" — machines that emulate human brains and can think, feel and work just like the brains they're copied from. Futurist and social scientist Robin Hanson describes a possible future when ems take over the global economy, running on superfast computers and copying themselves to multitask, leaving humans with only one choice: to retire, forever. Glimpse a strange future as Hanson describes what could happen if robots ruled the earth.

  5. 11:31
    Wanis Kabbaj What a driverless world could look like

    What if traffic flowed through our streets as smoothly and efficiently as blood flows through our veins? Transportation geek Wanis Kabbaj thinks we can find inspiration in the genius of our biology to design the transit systems of the future. In this forward-thinking talk, preview exciting concepts like modular, detachable buses, flying taxis and networks of suspended magnetic pods that could help make the dream of a dynamic, driverless world into a reality.

  6. 9:46
    Tom Gruber How AI can enhance our memory, work and social lives

    How smart can our machines make us? Tom Gruber, co-creator of Siri, wants to make "humanistic AI" that augments and collaborates with us instead of competing with (or replacing) us. He shares his vision for a future where AI helps us achieve superhuman performance in perception, creativity and cognitive function — from turbocharging our design skills to helping us remember everything we've ever read and the name of everyone we've ever met. "We are in the middle of a renaissance in AI," Gruber says. "Every time a machine gets smarter, we get smarter."

  7. 14:27
    Sam Harris Can we build AI without losing control over it?

    Scared of superintelligent AI? You should be, says neuroscientist and philosopher Sam Harris — and not just in some theoretical way. We're going to build superhuman machines, says Harris, but we haven't yet grappled with the problems associated with creating something that may treat us the way we treat ants.