Ray Kurzweil is an engineer who has radically advanced the fields of speech, text and audio technology. He's revered for his dizzying -- yet convincing -- writing on the advance of technology, the limits of biology and the future of the human species.
Dave Perry is the visionary game designer behind some of the most beloved titles of the past two decades -- Earthworm Jim, MDK, Messiah, and game adaptations of films such as Terminator and The Matrix.
Clay Shirky argues that the history of the modern world could be rendered as the history of ways of arguing, where changes in media change what sort of arguments are possible -- with deep social and political implications.
By coding computer simulations with biologically modeled nervous systems, Torsten Reil and his company NaturalMotion breathe life into the animated characters inhabiting the most eye-poppingly realistic games and movies around.
Jeff Hawkins pioneered the development of PDAs such as the Palm and Treo. Now he's trying to understand how the human brain really works, and adapt its method -- which he describes as a deep system for storing memory -- to create new kinds of computers and tools.