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futuring

futuring

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Published by: vineetya on Nov 03, 2008
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06/16/2009

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Futuring
Part I 
Bruce LaDuke, Futurist, Indianapolis, IN 
 
Futuring is an emerging discipline that has come into existence because society is changingradically at all levels and with increasing speed, variability, and complexity. Communities and alltypes of enterprises are beginning to feel the crushing weight of exponential change.We find an example of this change within technology, where Moore’s law accurately predictedthat the number of transistors on a chip will double approximately every two years. Figure 1.1shows that progression in the capabilities of Intel computer chips.
 
Figure 1.1
But this level of change is not limited to technological change. There are simultaneousrevolutions in many categories simultaneously. These include:TechnologyInformation / Communication / Connectivity / PrivacyEnvironment / BiodiversityMedical / HeathMilitary / SecurityEconomyCulture / ValuesPoliticsEnergyDemographicBusinessEducationImmigrationIf the change was in any one area, it might be manageable using traditional approaches. Butagain, simultaneous changes are pushing the limits of all social systems.Next we will look at exponential change in several different areas. The mother of these is amulti-dimensional revolution. The Internet is not just a technological change—It also representsa revolution in the connectedness of our culture, the ubiquitous presence of information, the waywe communicate, and threats to our privacy. Figure 1.2 shows the exponential growth ofInternet Users.
 
Figure 1.2
As the ‘global village’ becomes more and more interconnected, national boundaries blur,political systems become more and more virtual, electronic nations emerge, positive andnegative news is instantaneous, and the fundamental nature of business is radically changed.One weak signal of the impact of these changes can be found in the realm of politics. Ron Paul,republican presidential candidate raised $4.3 million on November 5, 2007. This was the largessingle day of fundraising by any Republican candidate and the largest single day amount for anycandidate in U.S. history. Shortly thereafter he beat his own record by raising $6.3 million inone day. The bulk of this money came from online contributions and online supporters insteadof traditional media exposure.

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