Blog Archive for the year 02004

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Daniel Janzen – “It’s ALL Gardening”

Posted on Monday, April 12th, 02004 by Stewart Brand
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Daniel Janzen

Mega gardening

Big as life and twice as opinionated, the renowned preservation biologist DANIEL JANZEN spoke for The Long Now on Friday, April 9, 2005. His perspective on preservation may be jarring to some: “It’s ALL Gardening”.

DAN JANZEN is most widely known for his heroic efforts helping set all of Costa Rica on a preservation path, ensuring that the mega-diverse nation continues indefinitely as a haven for science and eco-tourism. His particular focus, Guanacaste Conservation Area, was recently declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO…

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Rusty Schweickart, “The Asteroid Threat Over the Next 100,000 Years”

Posted on Friday, March 12th, 02004 by Robin Ward
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Rusty Schweickart

Asteroid threat report

Schweickart filled the hall with some 240 at the Presidio Officers Club and gave a dazzling lecture. He left the next day for Washington DC to lobby Congress to apply its will to making the Earth safe for the very long term.

“For life to survive in planetary systems,” said Schweickart, “it has to figure out how to deal with massive asteroid impacts. Who knows how many advanced life forms in the universe have failed or passed that test…

Read the rest of Stewart Brand’s Summary

James Dewar – “Long-term Policy Analysis”

Posted on Monday, February 16th, 02004 by Stewart Brand
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James Dewar

Long-term Policy Analysis

Dewar is head of RAND’s Pardee Center on very long-term policy—35 to 200 years

For over half a century the RAND Corporation has influenced national policy and invented major intellectual tools. Packet switching (Paul Baran) came from RAND; so did scenario planning (Herman Kahn); so does the current understanding of “net warfare” (John Arquilla). For all of its power, RAND’s thinkers are seldom heard in public.

Three years ago RAND set out to engage serious long-term thinking. A RAND alum funded the Pardee Center for Longer Range Global Policy and the Future Human Condition, with the charge “to improve our ability to think about the longer-range future…

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George Dyson, “There’s Plenty of Room at the Top: Long-term Thinking About Large-scale Computing”

Posted on Friday, January 9th, 02004 by Robin Ward
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George Dyson

Long-term thinking about large-scale computing

Ever since his 1997 breakthrough book, DARWIN AMONG THE MACHINES, Dyson has become regarded as a leading historian and interpreter of computer science, bringing a rigorous and unconventional perspective. Thus his willingness to examine the long-term prospects for mega-scale computing. Most computer people are averse to discussing seriously any future beyond ten years.

With the Dyson seminar, our series begins to get down to specific cases of applying long-term thinking…

Read the rest of Stewart Brand’s Summary