Thursday, February 21, 2008

My interview on The Future and You podcast

I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Stephen Euin Cobb for his award-winning podcast The Future And You. Stephen is a U.S. science fiction author, futurist, a columnist and contributing editor for Jim Baen's Universe Magazine, the online magazine from Baen Books. Within Second Life his avatar's name is "Boc Cryotank." Stephen is also a game designer, artist, essayist and transhumanist. In each episode of The Future And You Stephen interviews a variety of authors, scientists, celebrities and "pioneers of the future" as to what they believe both the near future and distant future will be like for individuals as well as for humanity in general.

My interview focused on Second Life, Virtual Reality technology and business, possible mid and long term evolutions of VR, Artificial Intelligence and other technologies, our work at metafuturing, transhumanism, the WTA, the IEET, and various thoughts about the future (and the present). Stephen's thoughts on "schisms" in virtual and physical realities (at the beginning) are quite similar to my own.

Listen to the mp3 podcast (it is also archived on the metaXLR8 server).

Here is the text of Stephen's blog post on the show website. See also the post on the Extropia Core blog - Extropia Core is the main meeting place for transhumanists in Second Life. Not much to add to my profile (too bad that I do not find enough time for some of the projects he mentions, such as the (almost) late lamented Fastra and FutureTAG). See my articles More voices from Second Life and Life 2.0 and Life 2.0: augmentationists in Second Life and beyond for more thoughts on the tension between immersionists and augmentationists within her virtual world.

Giulio Prisco (futurist, scientist, corporate consultant and until recently the Executive Director of the World Transhumanist Association) is today's featured guest. He serves on the Board of Directors of the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies and on the Global Task Force on Implications and Policy for CRN, the Center for Responsible Nanotechnology.

Argent Bury (a digital person living exclusively within Second Life) provides an essay concerning the tension between immersionists and augmentationists within her virtual world.

Hosted by Stephen Euin Cobb, this is the February 20, 2008 episode of The Future And You. [Running time: 79 minutes]

Giulio Prisco also covers the prejudice and intolerance between immersionists and augmentationists, and mentions that the day before the interview, Cervantes University held its very first college class within Second Life, and discusses many aspects of the future of virtual realities.

A virtual reality expert and consultant for companies wishing to use and benefit from many different VR platforms, Giulio describes what's available now, and what will be available in the decades to come. From the current photorealistic graphics, to the total immersion through full sensory feedback directly wired into the human nervous system.

He describes various VR platforms including Second Life and its competitors, as well as the possibility that all the platforms will become linked together into a unified whole, just as the internet was once many separate little nets that could not share content.

Giulio Prisco is also the Director of the futurist consulting consortium called FutureTag, as well as founder and CEO of Metafuturing (a company specializing in Science and Technology Consulting, Internet Services and Virtual Reality). Based in Madrid, Spain, he founded the Spanish transhumanist group FASTRA. He is a former physicist and computer scientist, as well as a former manager at ESA: the European Space Agency.