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Slides: A Futurist Toolkit for MIAD ID students

“Attention, taken to its highest degree, is the same thing as prayer.” Simone Weil


Attention is the most valuable economic resource. That’s why there’s such a battle to capture it. When someone or something has your attention, everything else follows. This quotation is found in the book A Beginner’s Guide to Japan by Pico Iyer, a fascinating, small book filled with subtle anecdotes about Japan.

My Slides & Book Links

“When an old technology is replaced by a new technology, the old one doesn’t go away, it returns in the form of an art.”

Marshall McLuhan (approximately – I can’t find the original quotation)

Sometimes, the old technology starts out as an art too. An article about the creation of Medieval Manuscripts.

“The bigger the picture, the more unique the potential for human contribution.” David Epstein, Range 

In other words, humans are better at the big picture than AI. That’s an incredibly hopeful message in the deluge of bad news for humans regarding AI. That recalls an idea from Kevin Kelly in his book The Inevitable: “It’s not a race against the machines. It is, and always has been, a race with the machines.”

Range is a rather awesome book. I’ve listened to it and am now reading it with pen in hand to underline, annotate and argue.

“The use of the computer has broken the sensual and tactile connection between imagination and…

“Being creative requires a jolt to take us out of the well-carved paths we retrace each day. This is where the machine might come in: it could give us that jolt, throw up a new suggestion, stop us from simply repeating the same algorithm each day. Machines might ultimately help us, as humans, behave less like machines.” From The Creativity Code by Marcus du Sautoy

The Creativity Code

Reading Ray Bradbury

Practical Advice on how to be a (real) Futurist

What happens when we go digital, away from the printed page? It’s a mixed report. We have instant access to just about everything but mostly we skim. DL;DR has become what passes for an educational and intellectual style. Maryanne Wolf explains the nuance and the need to go deeper into the text, especially the physical, paper text. I’ve listened to and am now reading her recent book: Reader, Come Home. Her earlier book, Proust and the Squid arrives tomorrow. Along with my interest in the use of the hand in design, (see Juhani Pallasmaa’s book The Thinking Hand, this is another topic of fascination.)

Scratch Utopians, find Tyrants

The School of Life Offers Some Cheat Sheets

“How can one word be better than another?” Well, there is a way: The Joy of Lex

How do Creatives Finish?

Gloves that can read American Sign Language. An innovative mind might then ask, if it can do that, what else could those gloves be used for? When thinking about innovations, it’s helpful to consider that whatever it is you’re working on, you’re still at the beginning of potential.

Verbicide” means what it sounds like, the murder of a word, … From First Things on uncluttering the mind so as to think and speak well.

The universe is full of magical things, patiently waiting for our wits to grow sharper.

Eden Phillpotts

Article: The Future’s Just Not That Into You.

Video: SEGD Keynote