Self-Motivation
David Goggins
Former Navy Seal
Career Development
Bryan Cranston
Actor
Critical Thinking
Liv Boeree
International Poker Champion
Emotional Intelligence
Amaryllis Fox
Former CIA Clandestine Operative
Management
Chris Hadfield
Retired Canadian Astronaut & Author
Learn
from the world's big
thinkers
Start Learning

You CAN Predict the Future, and You Must

All too often we get plans which have this common assumption that the future’s going to be just like today.

When I do mentoring and early stage investing, one obvious thing I look for is that people incorporate a model of the future into their business plans.  All too often we get plans which have this common assumption that the future’s going to be just like today.  Yes, we’ve had a lot of change up until now, but then people’s imagination leaves them and they assume that, five years from now, ten years from now, it’s going to be the same reality. Maybe cell phones will be a little smaller.


I got into this because of my own interest in being an inventor and being able to anticipate where technology would be so I could time my project correctly.  Imagine life without social networks, that’s ancient history.  In fact, you watch the movie, Social Network, and it looks like ancient history, but it’s 2004.

So the world is changing faster and faster.  You can anticipate what things will be like.  This common wisdom, you can’t predict the future, is wrong when it comes to at least these underlying measures.  Very specifically: bits of communication per dollar, or bits of memory per dollar, or base pairs of DNA per dollar, or the number of base pairs sequenced each year, the number of bits for moving around the Internet, the number of bits being moved around wirelessly, the number of bits of data we’re downloading about the brain. These kinds of basic measures follow exquisitely predictable exponential trajectories. 

In Their Own Words is recorded in Big Think's studio.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock

LIVE EVENT | Radical innovation: Unlocking the future of human invention

Innovation in manufacturing has crawled since the 1950s. That's about to speed up.

Big Think LIVE

Add event to calendar

AppleGoogleOffice 365OutlookOutlook.comYahoo


Keep reading Show less

Bubonic plague case reported in China

Health officials in China reported that a man was infected with bubonic plague, the infectious disease that caused the Black Death.

Vials Of Bacteria That May Cause Plague Missing From TX University

(Photo by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention/Getty Images)
Coronavirus
  • The case was reported in the city of Bayannur, which has issued a level-three plague prevention warning.
  • Modern antibiotics can effectively treat bubonic plague, which spreads mainly by fleas.
  • Chinese health officials are also monitoring a newly discovered type of swine flu that has the potential to develop into a pandemic virus.
Keep reading Show less

Navy SEALs: How to build a warrior mindset

SEAL training is the ultimate test of both mental and physical strength.

Videos
  • The fact that U.S. Navy SEALs endure very rigorous training before entering the field is common knowledge, but just what happens at those facilities is less often discussed. In this video, former SEALs Brent Gleeson, David Goggins, and Eric Greitens (as well as authors Jesse Itzler and Jamie Wheal) talk about how the 18-month program is designed to build elite, disciplined operatives with immense mental toughness and resilience.
  • Wheal dives into the cutting-edge technology and science that the navy uses to prepare these individuals. Itzler shares his experience meeting and briefly living with Goggins (who was also an Army Ranger) and the things he learned about pushing past perceived limits.
  • Goggins dives into why you should leave your comfort zone, introduces the 40 percent rule, and explains why the biggest battle we all face is the one in our own minds. "Usually whatever's in front of you isn't as big as you make it out to be," says the SEAL turned motivational speaker. "We start to make these very small things enormous because we allow our minds to take control and go away from us. We have to regain control of our mind."
Keep reading Show less

New guidelines redefine 'obesity' to curb fat shaming

Is focusing solely on body mass index the best way for doctor to frame obesity?

Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images
Surprising Science
  • New guidelines published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal argue that obesity should be defined as a condition that involves high body mass index along with a corresponding physical or mental health condition.
  • The guidelines note that classifying obesity by body mass index alone may lead to fat shaming or non-optimal treatments.
  • The guidelines offer five steps for reframing the way doctors treat obesity.
Keep reading Show less
Coronavirus

How COVID-19 will change the way we design our homes

Pandemic-inspired housing innovation will collide with techno-acceleration.

Scroll down to load more…
Quantcast