Thursday, March 12, 2009

Freaky Future Follies

I just discovered two windows into the future. One is serious but often funny, a TED talk by Juan Enriquez called "Beyond the crisis, mindboggling science and the arrival of Homo evolutis." This is from a very recent TED conference (February 20, 2009) and provides some interesting big picture views on the economy (with hilarious visuals), followed by some thoughts on where we are headed with developments in cell engineering, tissue engineering, and robot engineering. The clip of the robot mule is somehow a bit creepy, like a Dali painting come to (robotic) life.

The other discovery is funny but somehow serious, the music of the comedy duo Flight of the Conchords. They are not new, but somehow I never heard any of their stuff (nor saw any of their HBO series, though I see now that the second season just started on January 18, so I'm not as far behind as I thought). Their satirical songs are not only outrageously funny, they are musically quite good, and their song and video "Robots" somehow connects with Enriquez's TED lecture. You can find a lot of Conchords videos on YouTube.

I probably will not be blogging much the next couple of weeks. The last time I was in China, Blogger was blocked by the Chinese government content filters (oddly enough I could access the Blogspot editor, so I could edit but not view my blog). I'm not sure if Blogger will be available this time or not - I hear these things come and go depending on what certain political bloggers say about China. But I shall return.

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