The Future Looks Bright(on)

17 Sep 2015  | 
Ivo Lukač
The Future Looks Bright(on)

This is a short review of Vjeran and me visiting dConstruct conference in Brighton last week, with a few related remarks. A really nice town, by the way.

The conference is a think-outside-the-box kind of event where you won’t learn anything that you could immediately put to use, but it was more of an inspiration and a chance to see what’s around the corner. The theme of the conference was Designing the Future, and more or less all the talks were about the technology and the future. Maybe too many (some turned out to be a bit hard to consume), but thanks to the several great ones that didn’t affect the result. There was even a UFO on the stage :)

Selected talks

Brian David Johnson opened the conference with his presentation “Designing the Future…and Building It…with Science Fiction!” He displayed the possible influence of science fiction to our future using his ultimate project: open-sourced 3D printable robots. He even has a manifesto: “21st century robot manifesto - A robot is: imagined first, easy to build, completely open source, fiercely social, intentionally iterative, filled with humanity and dreams, thinking for her/him/itself.” Made me think of Blade Runner...

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Josh Clark showed, similar as Brian, how magic can influence our technology by demoing some magical IoT devices :) It is true that we do things every day that would look like magic to our grandparents. If we go a bit further to the past, we might have even been burned for witchcraft :)

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Finally, Mark Stevenson, the author of “An Optimist’s Tour of the Future”, closed the conference with the great talk about the morality of technology which will be of an immense importance sooner than we think. The future is accelerating, he stated, meaning that the new technology is being adopted faster and faster. This is causing problems even today, because our decisions are based mostly on our culture, and the culture is the slowest to change. It will be interesting to see how we cope with it in the future. Now it’s up to us - the creativists, designers, engineers, and entrepreneurs - to make it possible. It will be challenging, for sure.

dConstruct no more

It is a bit of an oxymoron that the conference speaking about the future has none. This year was the last for dConstruct. Guys from Clearleft led by Jeremy Keith and Andy Budd have decided to end the series after more than a decade, and focus on some other endeavors. I wish them all the best.

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Does future look bright?

All this talk about the future made us think about our future, where we are heading with the company, and the other things related. You need to envision where you’ll be in the future to actually get there. In the last couple of years our focus has sharpened and we see it more clearly - we are already on our way :)

How about you?

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