A while ago, I wrote about going to Get into the Future – the Dutch tech event organised by De Financiële Telegraaf and SingularityU. A little over two weeks ago this awesome event took place. During the event, 8 innovators spoke about exponential growth and how we can apply these technologies in our daily lives and in our businesses. I’m giving you a small recap of my day at Get into the Future.
Due to other commitments in the afternoon, I was only able to attend the beginning of the event. However, I already felt I had information overload from just the first 3 keynote speakers. I have one of those brains that starts rattling the minute it hears interesting things…
One message stood at the center of the event. We live in a world where technology can make the difference between scarcity and abundance. Instead of curing diseases, technology can prevent them. But we have to learn how to apply these technologies. The general thought I had during the speakers was: how can I use these ideas in my own field of work?
My takeaways from Get into the Future:
- Embrace exponential growth! We are currently thinking in terms of linear growth, while we should be focussing on the bigger picture. Jim Stolze’s presentation touched on this subject. He applied it to artificial intelligence. AI exists, but it can be so much more beneficial to us if we use it to our advantage. We shouldn’t see AI as a threat to our work because similar technologies in the past haven’t taken away our jobs. On the contrary, it has opened up many more opportunities. But because we are incapable of looking past our linear thoughts, we can’t see the full potential of these new technologies. Stop being short-sighted. Noted.
Side note: I really want Alexa in my house after this presentation.
- We live in a world of abundance! We just have to reprogram our materials. Aaike van Vugt demonstrated how one teaspoon could be transformed by changing the properties of the metal. Due to nanotechnology, it is possible to rearrange atoms so that properties can be rearranged. Gold can become blue, it’s possible to create bendable surfaces, you name it. We can turn our waste into new products. Recycling 2.0, if you will. There is no excuse for scarcity with nanotechnology.
- Become aware! Aware of the fact that our brain is subjective and that it can be manipulated. Technology, on the other hand, is more reliable because it looks at facts. Jan Dietvorst explained this principle by showing us some fun examples. Our brain deceives us. It plays tricks. These tricks have been applied to the field of marketing for a long time because our brains can be manipulated to buy products. Artificial intelligence, neuroscience and deep learning can be applied to the field of persuasive communication so that marketeers can consciously redirect consumers to purchase products. Is this ethically responsible? Yes and no. Marketing has worked this way for ages, but it is important consumers are made aware that these technologies are being applied to persuade them.
Overall, a wonderful and inspirational day from what I had experienced. Definitely worth going to next year if you are interested in these types of topics. Important note to De Financiële Telegraaf though: more female speakers please 👩🏻💻.