10 min read

20 Metatrends for the Roaring 20s

By Peter H. Diamandis on Jan 5, 2020

In the decade ahead, waves of exponential technological advancements are stacking atop one another, eclipsing decades of breakthroughs in scale and impact.

Topics: 3D Printing AR/VR Manufacturing Sensors Entrepreneurship Finance AI Exponentials Exponential Organizations space exploration Singularity machine learning networks 5G Augmented Reality trillion sensor economy Business Models Brain computer interface internet of things Spatial Web exponential technology bci brain machine interface energy abundance future of energy smart economy trends 2020s 2020 sustainability
7 min read

Human Capital Abundance

By Peter H. Diamandis on Nov 3, 2019

We are about to massively increase the amount of Human Genius on planet Earth in two distinct ways.

Topics: 5G connectivity satellites Brain computer interface crowdsourcing bci brain machine interface Neuralink human capital genius balloons crowdsourcing genius brain-to-brain communication human intelligence
8 min read

Merging Mind with Machine

By Peter H. Diamandis on Jul 21, 2019

In the coming decade, we may soon begin connecting our brains to an AI.

Topics: Abundance Exponentials Brain computer interface bci brain machine interface Elon Musk Neuralink electrodes BMI DARPA CTRL-Labs
12 min read

Abundance Insider: May 17th, 2019

By Peter H. Diamandis on May 17, 2019

In this week's Abundance Insider: Tomato-picking robots, BCIs for addiction treatment, and a lab-on-a-chip for studying the microbiome.

Cheers,
Peter, Marissa, Kelley, Greg, Bri, Jarom, Joseph, Derek, Jason, Claire, Max and Nora

P.S. Send any tips to our team by clicking here, and send your friends and family to this link to subscribe to Abundance Insider.

P.P.S. Want to learn more about exponential technologies and hone in on your MTP/ Moonshot? Abundance Digital, a Singularity University Program, includes 100+ hours of course work and video archives for entrepreneurs, like you. Keep up to date on exponential news and get feedback on your boldest ideas from an experienced, supportive community. Click here to learn more and sign up.

Amazon's New Machines Pack Boxes Up To 5x Faster Than Humans

What it is: Amazon has revealed that it is piloting warehouse automation technology from Italian firm CMC SRL. CMC’s CartonWrap machines can pack up to 700 boxes per hour, and are already in use at JD.com, Shutterfly, and Walmart. Early projections estimate that each machine could replace as many as 24 roles in each fulfillment center, in addition to the cost and time to train new packing employees in roles with high turnover. Amazon expects that “the efficiency savings will be reinvested in new services for customers, where new jobs will continue to be created.”

Why it's important: We’re no longer expecting that robotics will automate many laborious, routine, and potentially dangerous jobs—that time is already here. As this happens, it’s critical to highlight the messaging around the rollout, which focuses on safety, reinvestment, and the high employee turnover in fulfillment center jobs. How can you emulate this approach as you roll out politically and socially sensitive future initiatives?  Share on Facebook

Spotted by Marissa Brassfield / Written by Jason Goodwin 

Human Gut Microbiome Physiology Can Now Be Studied In Vitro Using Organ Chip Technology

What it is: Up until now, it has proved extraordinarily challenging to study direct interactions between the human microbiome and intestinal tissue in the lab. However, researchers at Harvard’s Wyss Institute have now leveraged ‘organ-on-a-chip’ technology for an effective new solution. The team first employs its Intestine Chip, comprised of two parallel microchannels divided by a porous membrane—the upper channel containing human intestinal epithelial cells, and the lower channel hosting vascular endothelial cells from intestinal microvessels. The team then establishes an oxygen gradient across the two channels, providing high oxygen levels to the chip’s intestinal epithelium and endothelium, and low levels to the bacteria-inhabited lumen. In a remarkable feat, the Intestine Chip was found to stably maintain microbial diversity in direct contact with human intestinal tissue for a full 5 days.

Why it's important: As explained by team lead and the Wyss Institute's Founding Director Donald Ingber, “This new anaerobic Intestine Chip technology now provides a way to study clinically relevant human host-microbiome interactions at the cellular and molecular levels under highly controlled conditions in vitro." No longer relying on mere correlational studies between disease and bacterial DNA in human stool samples, researchers’ effective use of organs-on-a-chip affords us a powerful new tool to understand the ways in which human gut flora profoundly affect human health and disease.  Share on Facebook

Spotted by Marissa Brassfield / Written by Claire Adair 

Experimental Surgery Gains Support As Opioid Deaths Rise

What it is: Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) has been used for years in the treatment of Parkinson’s and other movement-related disorders. Now, doctors at Shanghai’s Ruijin Hospital are seeing promising results in the treatment of opioid addiction. Five of eight patients in China have stayed off heroin for at least two years, and a patient who received a device six months ago has been off drugs for the duration. A number of factors have led to delays in experimentation in Europe and the U.S., including the high cost of devices ($100,000 in the U.S. vs $25,000 in China), difficulties in recruiting patients, and failed attempts to use DBS in the treatment of depression, which altered the risk-reward balance in the U.S. China, however, is moving ahead. To date, eight clinical trials have been registered throughout the world, six of which are in China.

Why it's important: Most of the concern in experimentation outside of the U.S. centers on the ethical risks of implants and surgery. While it’s important to note the cultural differences here in perception of a massive problem (which seems to carry a higher cost in China), as more devices are implanted, we’ll gain a much better understanding of how the brain functions overall. Follow this line of research, whether you’re exploring the potential of BCI or the treatment of other disorders.  Share on Facebook

Spotted by Marissa Brassfield / Written by Jason Goodwin 

This Robot Picks Tomatoes Without Bruising Them And Detects Ripeness Better Than Humans

What it is: Massachusetts-based startup Root AI has developed its first agricultural robot, the Virgo 1, an expert tomato picker. Geared with sensors, cameras and onboard lights for nighttime harvesting, this self-driving robot can autonomously navigate huge commercial greenhouses, regardless of the time of day. Operated by its AI software brain, Virgo 1 then detects which tomatoes are sufficiently ripe for harvest, now with a success rate higher than that of humans. Once the right candidates are chosen, Virgo 1’s dexterous robotic hand can pluck tomatoes without bruising them or tearing down connected vines. Made from a food-safe, easy-to-clean plastic, these robotic fingers are even designed to eliminate the spread of mold, viruses or insects, protecting clean crops from faulty counterparts.

Why it's important: Virgo’s sensors and grippers can be reconfigured, and its AI software rewritten, to handle any number of crops. As noted by Root AI’s CEO Josh Lessing, “It’s a complete mobile platform enabled to harvest whatever you need.” Today, farmers spend over $34 billion per year on agricultural labor in the U.S. alone. Swiftly disrupting this labor-intensive sector, however, is a global smart agriculture market projected to reach nearly US$24 billion in value by the end of 2025. Already, exponential technologies from synthetic biology to computer vision are closing in on traditional agriculture from all directions, and AgTech robots like Virgo 1 are poised to become tomorrow’s harvesters.  Share on Facebook

Spotted by Marissa Brassfield / Written by Claire Adair 

Wireless Network Brings Dust-Sized Brain Implants A Step Closer

What it is: Brain computer interfaces (BCI) of the future that enable high-fidelity, high-speed brain-to-computer communications will require a decentralized wireless network of thousands of nano- to micro-scale units embedded throughout our neural system. Engineers from Brown University, Qualcomm, and the University of California at San Diego presented a communication scheme to overcome the critical issue of coordinating communications between these decentralized BCIs. Their system will allow two-way communication between each BCI unit and an external device at a rate of 10 Mb/s uplink and a downlink rate of 1 Mb/s. The engineering team dubbed their 0.25-square-millimeter implants “neurograins.”

Why it's important: Over the past year, we’ve featured incredible breakthroughs in BCI technologies. While these breakthroughs are technological marvels, they are rudimentary compared to the everyday BCIs we’ll see later in the 21st century. As Ray Kurzweil predicts, and as these researchers are taking active steps to achieve, we’ll soon have thousands of nanobots monitoring and regulating every aspect of our physiology -- from our brains to other vital organs. In the age of rapidly advancing artificial intelligence, will networks of nanoscopic BCIs provide humans the next evolutionary boost needed to thrive alongside and coevolve with hyperintelligent machines?  Share on Facebook

Spotted by Marissa Brassfield / Written by Max Goldberg 

What is Abundance Insider?

This email is a briefing of the week's most compelling, abundance-enabling tech developments, curated by Marissa Brassfield in preparation for Abundance 360. Read more about A360 below.

Want more conversations like this?

At Abundance 360, a Singularity University Program, we teach the metatrends, implications and unfair advantages for entrepreneurs enabled by breakthroughs like those featured above. We're looking for CEOs and entrepreneurs who want to change the world. The program is highly selective. If you'd like to be considered, apply here

Abundance Digital, a Singularity University Program, is an online educational portal and community of abundance-minded entrepreneurs. You’ll find weekly video updates from Peter, a curated newsfeed of exponential news, and a place to share your bold ideas. Click here to learn more and sign up.

Know someone who would benefit from getting Abundance Insider? Send them to this link to sign up.

Topics: Abundance Insider Robotics health robots Amazon Brain computer interface automation bci brain machine interface
14 min read

Abundance Insider: May 10th, 2019

By Peter H. Diamandis on May 10, 2019

In this week's Abundance Insider: Agile automatons, trillion-sensor energy storage, and 3D-printed "breathing" lungs.

Cheers,
Peter, Marissa, Kelley, Greg, Bri, Jarom, Joseph, Derek, Jason, Claire, Max and Nora

P.S. Send any tips to our team by clicking here, and send your friends and family to this link to subscribe to Abundance Insider.

P.P.S. Want to learn more about exponential technologies and hone in on your MTP/ Moonshot? Abundance Digital includes 100+ hours of course work and video archives for entrepreneurs, like you. Keep up to date on exponential news and get feedback on your boldest ideas from an experienced, supportive community. Click here to learn more and sign up.

Watch This Hulking Robot Play “The Floor Is Lava”

What it is: Robots are now playing sleepover games. Last year, Boston Dynamics unveiled Atlas, a humanoid robot capable of navigating a parkour-style obstacle course. Now, IHMC Robotics has developed a set of algorithms that allows Atlas to autonomously walk across wobbly cinder blocks and suspended wooden planks, a task resembling the kids’ game “the floor is lava.” Using LIDAR to build a map of the area it’s supposed to traverse, Atlas uses the algorithm to determine each step it should take to reach the other side. Atlas is successful about 50 percent of the time, and IHMC expects to increase that rate through improvements to the robot’s balance and the range of motion.

Why it's important: Advances in sensors, AI, and robotics are developing faster than you might think. Just six years ago, we marveled at Atlas' ability to walk on rough terrain, and just two years ago, it has been able to do backflips. As hardware and algorithms progress, look for Atlas-like robotics to begin serving as avatars for humans in dangerous scenarios or to explore remote destinations like Mars.  Share on Facebook

Spotted by Marissa Brassfield / Written by Jason Goodwin 

Ford Brings VR To Its Design Department With Co-Creation Tool

What it is: Ford has developed a Co-Creation tool with Gravity Sketch that allows its engineers to work on the same project in virtual reality (VR), even if thousands of miles apart. In an effort to streamline design and development projects, Ford’s new tool entirely circumvents the 2D design stage, enabling engineers across Ford’s North America, Asia and Europe design studios to plug into the same 3D virtual replica of auto models. As a result, engineers in different global markets can inhabit a standard international model in VR and implement regional preferences at minimal cost and multiplied speeds.

Why it's important: A fast-growing phenomenon in the automotive industry, the use of advanced, professional VR platforms in auto development is delocalizing, demonetizing and even democratizing a traditionally slow and expensive process. As stated by Ford, “The Co-Creation feature adds more voices to the conversation in a virtual environment, which results in more efficient design work that may help accelerate a vehicle program’s development.” However, Ford is not alone. While Italian motorcycle manufacturer Ducati leverages VR to help decide between projects, others such as supplier Magna implements VR to reduce costs and place engineers in different continents on the same project.  Share on Facebook

Spotted by Marissa Brassfield / Written by Claire Adair 

Stretchable Carbon Nanotube Supercapacitors Might Be The Future Of Wearable-Device Power Sources

What it is: With batteries dying every 3 to 10 years, how will we sustainably power trillions of sensors deployed in every facet of our lives? Researchers at Michigan State University developed highly stretchable supercapacitors that might solve this massive challenge facing the onset of a trillion-sensor economy. The supercapacitors -- an energy storage alternative to batteries -- are based on carbon nanotubes, a one-dimensional nanomaterial with exceptional mechanical and electronic properties. Using the highly flexible nature of carbon nanotubes, these supercapacitors can be isotropically stretched to over 800 percent of their initial length. Whereas prior flexible supercapacitors can only be meaningfully stretched in one direction, these new carbon nanotube energy storage devices are stretchable in two sets of directions. Multidimensional flexibility is critical to creating robust wearable and devices that can conform to nominal movement of the human body.

Why it's important: As we approach the trillion-sensor economy, we need more robust power solutions for our devices. Over 900 million batteries will need to be swapped out every day to sustain the trillion-plus sensors in service. What alternative energy harvesting and energy storage solutions do you think are most promising?  Share on Facebook

Spotted by Marissa Brassfield / Written by Max Goldberg 

New Video Shows 3D Printed Lung “Breathing”

What it is: Our organs depend on intricate networks of different types of blood vessels that carry vital nutrients. This complex network of capillaries is one of the main challenges in 3D printing and replicating human organs. Using a modified version of stereolithography (SLA), researchers solidified a cell-filled hydrogel into a network of blood vessels. What enabled previously unachieved vessel complexity on this project is how the researchers controlled their vessel formation. In short, they deployed an off-the-shelf food dye to block part of the SLA light source. This enabled the researchers to achieve the fine-scale resolution necessary to make functional blood vessels. Using this technology to create lung-mimicking air sacs, the researchers can: (1) pump deoxygenated red blood cells into these lab-printed blood vessels, (2) facilitate the transfer of oxygen to the blood cells, and (3) observe how much oxygen the blood cells absorb.

Why it's important: With over 100,000 people on the U.S. organ transplant waiting list, bioprinting has the potential to solve a massive organ shortage. A few weeks ago, we saw the world’s first beating 3D printed heart. In the coming years, these individual regenerative medicine technologies will converge to enable the first full-scale, operational 3D-printed human organs.  Share on Facebook

Spotted by Marissa Brassfield / Written by Max Goldbberg 

Researchers Make Organic Solar Cells Immune To The Ravages Of Water, Air And Light

What it is: Researchers at NYU’s Tandon School of Engineering have discovered a novel method that makes organic solar panels more resistant to oxygen, water and light, without weighing them down via encapsulation. Instead of applying a protective coating, the research team uses an adhesive tape to strip electron-accepting molecules (specifically, a fullerene derivative called PCBM) from the top surface of the solar cell’s photoactive layer. Currently, the oxidation of fullerene derivatives is a key culprit in device degradation. By removing PCBM from cells' exposed film surfaces, however, the team can thereby eliminate the challenge of oxidation by oxygen and water. In success, their process removes a whopping 94 percent of PCBM acceptor components, rendering a polymer-rich surface for multiplied impermeability.

Why it's important: Currently, organic cells are highly vulnerable to moisture, oxygen and even the very sunlight they seek to capture. However, protective encapsulation of the cell often reduces efficiency, increases unit weight and drives up costs of production. In a double win, the NYU team’s discovery fortifies organic solar cells by reduction, catalyzing scale-up and impenetrability. With a major advantage over traditional silicon solar cells, these organic iterations are highly flexible, ultra-lightweight, and are comprised of much more readily accessible materials. With a market projected to grow over 20 percent between 2017 and 2020, organic solar cells may soon find their way into our windows, screens and even mobile devices.  Share on Facebook

Spotted by Marissa Brassfield / Written by Claire Adair 

Brain-Machine Interfaces Could Give Us All Superpowers

What it is: Last week, the documentary film I Am Human premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival, chronicling the stories of three people pursuing experimental brain-computer interfaces (BCI) to help them regain what each has lost. Stephen, who lost his eyesight in adulthood, opts to implant a chip underneath his eye that hooks to electrodes in his brain. Anne, suffering from Parkinson’s, pursues deep brain stimulation to help suppress the parts of the brain leading to tremors. And Bill, a tetraplegic after a bicycle accident, is testing out an interface to allow his brain to communicate directly with electrodes implanted in his arms and hands. The film also saves time to interview the scientists and entrepreneurs behind these developments and explore what might be possible in the near future.

Why it's important: This documentary is a reminder that the future is already here, just not evenly distributed. Several hundred thousand people are already using some form of BCI today. Early adopters must consider big risks; by recording patients as their stories unfold, I Am Human allows us to empathize with their situations. How can you use those emotional insights to deliver better services or understand challenges your customers and stakeholders are facing?  Share on Facebook

Spotted by Marissa Brassfield / Written by Jason Goodwin 

What is Abundance Insider?

This email is a briefing of the week's most compelling, abundance-enabling tech developments, curated by Marissa Brassfield in preparation for Abundance 360. Read more about A360 below.

Want more conversations like this?

At Abundance 360, Peter's 360-person executive mastermind, we teach the metatrends, implications and unfair advantages for entrepreneurs enabled by breakthroughs like those featured above. We're looking for CEOs and entrepreneurs who want to change the world. The program is highly selective. If you'd like to be considered, apply here

Abundance Digital is Peter’s online educational portal and community of abundance-minded entrepreneurs. You’ll find weekly video updates from Peter, a curated newsfeed of exponential news, and a place to share your bold ideas. Click here to learn more and sign up.

Know someone who would benefit from getting Abundance Insider? Send them to this link to sign up.

Topics: Abundance Insider 3D Printing Materials Science health healthcare Stem Cells wearables Brain computer interface mHealth bci brain machine interface