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Author Archive

The Million Dollar Long Bet

by Kevin Kelly on June 9th, 02008

Warren Buffett recently bet an ambitious hedge fund operator $1 million that they won’t beat the returns of S&P 500 after their extremely hefty fees are accounted for. Buffett claims investors will do as well with a no-load index fund over the ten years of the bet. He has long been critical of the performance […]

Iqbal Quadir, “Technology Empowers the Poorest”

by Kevin Kelly on May 23rd, 02008

Making money WITH the poor

When Iqbal Quadir applied to US colleges from his home town in Bangladesh he was surprised to discover that not all American universities were found in Washington, DC. That’s how it was in Bangladesh, where everything of importance was centralized in the capital city, Dacca. He later realized that. . .   Read More

The Birth Clock

by Kevin Kelly on May 9th, 02008

A nice piece of time art.   

It’s a clock that is dead, until you break its glass case. Then it begins ticking. You are now committed to whatever. The artist, Alex-vf, says “it helps you make up your mind.” Here is the official description (via Seth).

The “Birth Clock” is a. . .   Read More

Email Time Machine

by Kevin Kelly on April 2nd, 02008

This is not the first gadget to do this and it won’t be the last. TimeMachiner sends you email in the future.

Seems to work in the short term. . .   Read More

World’s Largest Audio-Visual Archive

by Kevin Kelly on March 29th, 02008

Long Now member John La Grou files this report:

Will the music of Charlie Parker and Ella Fitzgerald be heard 100 generations from now? A major gift from David Packard has greatly increased the long odds on that. David’s $150M bequeath, the largest private gift ever to the U.S. legislative branch, launched the. . .   Read More

Long Duration Studies

by Kevin Kelly on February 21st, 02008

In 1984 NASA launched a bus-sized cylinder into space. It was covered with 86 panels, each of which was a scientific experiment created to measure the long-term effects of space on various materials. The space craft, called the Long Duration Exposure Facility (LDEF) weighed 10 tons and circled the earth 32,000 times. . .   Read More

An Eternal Last Goodbye

by Kevin Kelly on February 11th, 02008

Via Jad Abumrad, host of RadioLab, I came across a 18-minute loop of music commissioned by a very enlightend hospital morgue near Paris.  The composer’s assignment was: “Please write us a song that will allow family members to face the death of a loved one.”  The morgue wanted music for the. . .   Read More

Timeline of Timelines

by Kevin Kelly on February 11th, 02008

A very meta service. Cabinet magazine, a hip paper-based journal of unusual ideas, published a chronology of calendars and timelines in history a few years ago. They updated the list for the web. It’s quite comprehensive, and provides in one chronological sequence the major inventions in the art of chronologies. But it could. . .   Read More

Yesterday’s Tomorrow

by Kevin Kelly on February 5th, 02008

While contemporary visions of the future aren’t new, past visions of the future are. Indeed “yesterday’s tomorrows” is a new genre with a growing body of material, including several books, such as “Yesterday’s Tomorrows: Past Visions of the American Future”.

The heydays of science fiction are 50 years old. That’s a. . .   Read More


by Kevin Kelly on January 28th, 02008

One of most needed (but still absent) instruments for long-term thinking is a predictions archive. Stewart Brand and I fist conceived of the Long Bets project as a supplementary agency that would work best as part of a great prediction registry. The registry would include any and all predictions about the future. The ideal. . .   Read More