Recently I have been giving a series of keynotes to clients on the future of energy. I spoke to the Biomass Organization and recently the Gas Processing Association. The same trends seem to be relevant.
To understand the future of energy you have to understand demand drivers such as population, wealth, economics, demographics, mobility and health care. Why? Energy lies at the very heart of every society’s sustainability. Their commerce, security and well being are tied today and will be tied in the future to energy. Energy access determines the future sustainability, climate change, evolution and development of nations. You have access to energy, you grow and thrive. You don’t and well the absence of energy is critical to survival or demise.
The world will need over 45 terawatts of energy to be sustainable by 2040. There is not enough energy in the world to keep pace with global or national GDP. Not enough means an energy challenged future.
Without radical accelerated alternative energy sources such as nano-solar, extreme biomass, natural gas infrastructure and yes more petro sources, we will not be able to feed 9 billion by 2050.
We need a new Smart Grid that connects everything users and providers, petro to alternatives to energy harvesting chips to pollution management. This is the future if we start thinking holistically. Plug in to the future.
So the future is about radical innovations that may bring us fast and accessible new solutions. Big data, Cloud computing, biotech energy development, synthetic biology etc. Without that we are at risk. Prosperity and the future are linked. Without energy there is no prosperity. New radical innovations will transform the energy equation–more energy sooner coming and fast.
Interesting observations from Jakarta where I am presenting at the Futurology conference. My thesis is that advanced exponential tech innovations, S&T, nano-bio-neuro-IT-quantum are some of the prime tools to use to feed, provide health care, energy, manage climate for the 8 plus billion people coming soon on the planet. We can’t get there from here without new investments in S&T.
Hanging out at the Semantic Web show http://semtech2011.semanticweb.com/index.cfm
in SF yesterday with Sandy Rosenberg, an IGF adviser made me realize how early we are in understanding the semantic web. The show was intimate and eye opening regarding the powerful potential for this technology.
Simply put, the Semantic Web is about tagging everything and linking every data, audio, image and video source to everything–including us. Also context pattern recognition–finding insight into data that is useful.
Then better search emerges, smarter analytics emerge and maybe we understand how to sell, profit, serve and help people better in everything we do–from health care to security to making new drugs and finding new customers.
The Semantic Web will either be a boon to business or a huge intrusion into life by forces that want to mine and predict your desires. You may say what’s wrong with mining my desires? If you have to ask you missed it.
Personally I think a super computing AI, think Google in the near future with the power of predictive analytic media, seductive, immersive, intuitive, sensing your Desires and then enabling your desires for information, products, services, experiences to be fulfilled sounds both fantastic and disturbing at the same time.
Are not happy in the Matrix? OK maybe that’s too much. But someone in a very undemocratic place like Iran or North Korea may use this Rogue Technology to exploit our desires in ways not happy.
Think neuromarketing meets social media meets the semantic web. Who will watch the watchers? In the manufacture of desire be careful what you ask for.
I do think the semantic web also and primarily will drive valuable new services in media entertainment and health care, to name a few.
See Semantic Web Show in SF, well done event
The most interesting thing about the U2 concert last night in Oakland was not Bono’s call to action for human rights in Burma or his crazy robust voice banging out all the songs we love. It was the real time (maybe) feed from space the last Endeavor space station of our Astronaut beaming in reminding us that it takes only one of us to with imagination to change the world for the better.
Very cool reminder, from space that tech innovations transform the our world and will transform the future.
So much of the world has been made better with technology innovation and we are only in the middle ages where computers, nano, neuro, biotech have just been invented minutes ago in the long history of civilization.
We must meet the grand challenges of a Sustainable Planet–economic, social, security and environmental sustainability. Especially as were are looking at 9 billion by 2050.
This futurist calls for Planetary Management of food, water, security and energy. We need more Fast Innovation, Innovation Velocity for inventing the next future we will all be living in.
Bono reminded us, and he’s right. The Bay Area helped change the world with innovations like the computer, networks and biotech. Now we need to build on this culture everywhere.
Innovation Velocity means faster tech inventions by individuals, more investments by government and private sector, faster products to empower the next billion people to learn, grow, contribute, collaborate and do business.
How are you creating Innovation Velocity?
One world. One Challenge.