Touch typing is still a vital productivity skill but will that continue?

By

When I was a teenager my father encouraged me to learn to touch type, in those days this being on electric typewriters. His rationale was that if I was preparing my resume I wouldn’t be able to give it to the typing pool to do. Needless to say I have benefited from his encouragement greatly over many years, in more ways than preparing my resume.
Read more

In a hybrid world employee and customer experience are vital: how to take them to the next level

By

Are we in a “post-Covid” world? Whatever happens, we can be sure of one thing: we now work, live, and do business in a hybrid world that integrates both physical and digital engagement. This is a new world; there is no way we’re going back to how things used to be.

Flexibility and experience at the centre

One of the lessons underlined by the pandemic is that human society is highly resilient. It is true that the adjustment and flexibility required was forced on individuals and companies, but most found themselves able to adapt far faster than they would have imagined possible.

This has created a world in which two elements become critical:
Read more

Thriving on Overload is a futurist manifesto

By

I have been very slack at keeping my blog updated! Slightly late to share: my fifth book, Thriving on Overload: The 5 Powers for Success in a World of Exponential Information, is now out. 

To learn more go to the Thriving on Overload website, which includes full details on the book, as well as on the Thriving on Overload Interactive Course, which offers in-depth learning on the topic, the Thriving on Overload podcast, which includes all the interviews I did for the book, and a growing set of resources to help people thrive, including our weekly Tips for Thriving newsletter.

Read more

It is ridiculous to predict when AI reaches human-level intelligence

By

I get very annoyed when I see discussion or predictions of “when AI will reach human-level intelligence”. That implies that intelligence is just one thing that you can measure linearly. Humans do not have even just 7 intelligences, as proposed by Howard Gardner. There are more dimensions to intelligence than we can imagine.

Machines have already vastly outperformed human “intelligence” in myriad domains, including of course almost all games we have invented, among them chess and Go, and a multitude of data-driven judgments and decisions. AI will inevitably continue to exceed the capabilities of both average and exceptional humans in more domains every year.

Read more

List of the world’s top female futurists (Update #5)

By

[UPDATE: We have added 25 additional futurists to the list for a total of 203. Thank you for your help building out the list!]

I find I am frequently asked where all the female futurists are. The discussion on why the profession of futurist appears to be so male-dominated has grown in recent years.

I know many outstanding female futurists, so whenever I am asked I point to a range of exceptional futurists to show that there are indeed many women in the field. However it is true that many are not as well known as they should be.

As such I thought it would be useful to compile a list of the world’s top female futurists, for those who are looking for diversity in their insights into the future. The following list provides a brief profile of 178 fabulous female futurists [up from 78 in the original list of September 2015, 143 in the update of November 2015, 158 in January 2018, 167 in February 2017, and 178 in the 2018 revision].
Read more

James Lovelock: Gaia and the rise of hyperintelligence

By

James Lovelock, the creator of the Gaia hypothesis, that the Earth is a holistic self-maintaining system, died last week. As a coincidence I read his last book, Novacene, over the weekend before I had heard the news.

Read more

The future of professional services lies in amplifying networks

By

In all my extensive work in professional services, I have long focused on the powerful role of networks in success and value creation. The central role of networks in professional services is now being amplified even further.

This is one of the points that came out in the fascinating conversation I had with Daniel Newman, Principal Analyst of Futurum Research and Hans Kroes, Global VP and Head of the Industry Business Unit for Professional Services at SAP in a webcast on Transformative Trends Influencing the Professional Services Industry. 

You can watch the full webcast below. More comments on the intensifying role of networks in professional services below.

Read more

Will a “Google PhD” become as good as a university-granted PhD?

By

Jordi Muñoz became President of prominent early drone company 3D Robotics at age 22, having made himself a world-leading expert in drone design and manufacturing, teaching himself through the universe of resources available through the web and his own experiments. He says:

“I come from a generation where we have Google PhDs, we can virtually figure out everything by just Googling around and doing some reading online”

Sci-Fi author William Gibson became a deep expert in antique watches by dint of five years research for “the sheer pointless pleasure of learning this vast, useless body of knowledge.” He notes that:
Read more

How do we know when AI becomes conscious and deserves rights?

By

Machines becoming conscious, self-aware, and having feelings would be an extraordinary threshold. We would have created not just life, but conscious beings.

There has already been massive debate about whether that will ever happen. While the discussion is largely about supra-human intelligence, that is not the same thing as consciousness.

Now the massive leaps in quality of AI conversational bots is leading some to believe that we have passed that threshold and the AI we have created is already sentient.

An article in Washington Post The Google engineer who thinks the company’s AI has come to life tells the story of a member of Google’s Responsible AI team, Blake Lemoine, who has become convinced that the Google’s (Language Model for Dialogue Applications) LaMDA chatbot platform has become sentient, and after being placed on administrative leave by Google, ‘blew the whistle’ to media.
Read more

How ‘Do Your Own Research’ is opening a fracture line in society

By

DYOR: Do Your Own Research

This recommendation sounds reasonable. I do that.

Yet those words mark deep divides in society.

An article in New York Times today They Did Their Own ‘Research.’ Now What? examines the now-powerful phenomenon of DYOR.
Read more