The articles posted on the Impact Lab represent an unusual mix, all of which are oriented around future trends, future thinking, or recent innovations that may more may not alter the course of history.
With that in mind, here are the posts that caught most people’s attention over 2014.
Contact lenses with night vision could be on the way
We all might be able to experience soon the super hero ability of having night vision thanks to graphene contact lenses. Contact lenses one day in the near future will be able to register the entire infrared spectrum as well as visible and ultraviolet light, according to Zhaohui Zhong, an assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering at the University of Michigan.
Vivek Wadhwa, Singularity University’s vice president of academics and innovation
Vivek Wadhwa, a Stanford University fellow, and vice president of academics and innovation at Singularity University, stands at the crossroads of the future of nearly every industry business and arts and science has to offer. At the World of Business Innovation event he painted a vivid portrait of 14 freaky technologies just around the corner.
Tube transportation – ET3
By Jared Lindzon: The average transportation speed of American citizens was 4 miles per hour in the year 1850. The primary mode of transportation then was a combination of walking and horse back.
Future jobs, future thinking
Futurist Thomas Frey: Last week I was speaking at an event in Istanbul. As usual, once I landed at the airport, I made my way to the customs area where I was greeted by no fewer than 1,000 people in line ahead of me.
As a child, everyone had a favorite superhuman power – flying, invisibility, comic book character strength and agility. Some of us secretly hoped to cultivate psychic powers like telekinesis, precognition, mind reading, etc., even as teens and young adults.
Now, thanks to advanced technology being developed by DARPA, and a bevy of private corporations and research institutes, the age of paranormal transhumanism and superhuman powers is upon us – an age when humans will use technology to realize magical, psychic powers once relegated to the realms of science fiction and fantasy.
The body is a machine
Dr. Aubrey de Grey is cofounder and Chief Science Officer of the SENS Research Foundation and to him the body is a machine. Just as a restored classic car can celebrate its hundredth birthday in peak condition, in the future, we’ll maintain our bodies’ cellular components to stave off the diseases of old age and live longer, healthier lives.
Physicist Ed Copeland explains Yitang Zhang’s finding on bounded gaps between prime numbers
Yitang “Tom” Zhang, a popular math professor at the University of New Hampshire, stunned the world of pure mathematics this month when he announced that he had proven the “bounded gaps” conjecture about the distribution of prime numbers. This is a crucial milestone on the way to the even more elusive twin primes conjecture, and a major achievement in itself.
What happens after we die?
“Biocentrism: How Life and Consciousness Are the Keys to Understanding the Nature of the Universe“ is a book written by the scientist Dr. Robert Lanza. The book has stirred up the Internet, because it contained a notion that life does not end when the body dies, and it can last forever. Lanza who was voted the 3rd most important scientist alive by the NY Times, has no doubts that this is possible. (Video)
Demonstrating the “metal air battery”
Together the Israeli company, Phinergy, and the aluminum giant, Alcoa Canada, demonstrated an electric vehicle (EV) capable of driving over 1,100 miles between charges using a combination of aluminum-air and lithium-ion storage technologies.
By the late 2020s or early 2030s renewables could be competing much more aggressively with the oil market
Kepler Chevreux, a French investment bank, has produced a fascinating analysis that has dramatic implications for the global oil industry. The investment bank estimates that $100 billion invested in either wind energy or solar energy – and deployed as energy for light and commercial vehicles – will produce significantly more energy than that same $100 billion invested in oil.