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Jack Smith,


Vignettes Foresight Glimpses on Selected Dimensions of Prospective, Nano Futures Jack Smith, Director S&T Foresight CRN World Care Conference – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Jack Smith,

Vignettes Foresight Glimpses on Selected
Dimensions of Prospective, Nano Futures
  • Jack Smith,
  • Director ST Foresight
  • CRN World Care Conference
  • September 11, 2007

Foresight Disclaimer
  • Foresight is a collaborative, sharing and
    challenging exercise
  • It involves diverse individuals and organizations
    doing forward research together in search of
    better preparedness for surprise
  • Nobody owns foresight outputs except those that
    actually participated
  • This presentation does not represent Canadian
    government policy, nor the views of the National
    Science Advisor of Canada
  • The presenter is representing his own expertise
    and reporting upon the insights of those who have
    joined him in exploring the uncertainties
    associated with foresight

Current Mindsets are (Quite) Often Limited
  • Heavier than air flying machines are impossible -
    Lord Kelvin, President Royal Society 1882
  • The horse is here to stay, the automobile is a
    novelty - Bank Manager to Henry Ford 1908
  • There is no likelihood man can ever tap the power
    of the atom - Robert Milliken, Nobel Prize in
    Physics 1923
  • Who the hell wants to hear actors talk? - Henry
    Warner, Film Producer 1927
  • There is a world market for about five computers
    - Thomas Watson IBM 1943
  • We dont like their sound, and guitar music is on
    the way out - President Decca Records, rejecting
    the Beatles 1962

Brockmans List The Next 50 Years
  • Cybersphere information beams, portable
    tele-connection ubiquitous smart networks
  • Bio-engineering bio-robotics, astro-biology,
    personal genomics embryo simulation, artificial
    life models
  • Quantum math computing, teleportation,
    computational and emergent complexity
  • Search for ETI and biophilic universes
  • Neuro-sentience convergent cognition,
    computational pharmacology,neuro-regeneration
  • Sub-terranean thermophilogy Triphibious
    flexible transport
  • Nano-structural products, sensors, materials,
    fabrication and molecular tailoring

Business 2.0 List
  • Bio-interactive Materials - small sensing
    devices reside on or inside people, animals, and
  • Bio-fuel Production Plants - ethanol, methanol,
    bio-diesel, eliminating dependence on foreign oil
  • Bionics - the next-generation of sophisticated
    prosthetic limbs or even artificial organs
  • Cognitronics - to link the brain directly to
  • Genotyping - making the connection between DNA
    and specific physical attributes i.e. longevity,
  • Combinatorial Science - algorithms and computing
    to develop hypotheses by observing large amounts
    of data.
  • Molecular Manufacturing - the building of complex
    atomic structures one atom at a time
  • Quantum Nucleonics - tapping the energy of the
    atom for energy

Fraunhofer-Germany Long Term Tech List
  1. Smart Environments micro components, smart
    sensors, cyber bots
  2. Man-Machine Cooperation intuitive
    brain-computer links
  3. Polytronics plastics in displays, energy
    systems and virtual environments
  4. Digital Medicine - imaging, simulations,
    medications via genomics, proteomics
  5. Digital Logistics - automated commerce -
    transactions, storages, fleets
  6. Integrated Production digital mass customized
    and virtual, flexible products
  7. Adaptive Structures piezo-ceramics to dampen
    vibration, noise, save energy
  8. Photonics Enablers- universal light controls
    medicine, electronics, materials
  9. Nano-Ultra-Violet extreme ultaviolet
    nano-processing radiation applications
  10. Simulation and Modelling - of everything
    quantum grid computing power
  11. Customized Energy distributed, portable
    networks, less central power.

What is Foresight?
  • A set of strategic tools that support
    government and industry decisions with adequate
    lead time for societal preparation and strategic
  • Anticipates multiple, plausible futures
  • 5 25 year time horizon
  • A rehearsal for potential futures
  • Accommodates uncertainty diversity
  • Highlights emerging opportunities threats

Foresight Tools
  • Environmental Scanning
  • Scenario Planning
  • Technology Mapping
  • and Road-mapping
  • Expert Technical Panels
  • Robust Factor Analysis
  • and Strategies Development
  • Web Virtual Conferences
  • Computerized Modelling
  • and Dynamic Simulation

Scenario Basics
  • Stories With Implications
  • Rich context
  • Provocative diversity
  • Relate to perceived needs opportunities
  • Designate some edges choices, boundaries
  • Consider also the opposites - and -
  • Critical Parameters
  • 4-7 is best, gt 10 confuses
  • Plots are useful when transparent, consistently
    structured, concise
  • Focus is critical to engage key stakeholders
  • Challenges-evidence tests may be useful
  • Balance of structure-free form helps ensure
  • Evocative names help recognition thematic links

Foresight Systems Lenses
  • Spheres of Influence
  • Ecological
  • Economic- Productive
  • Socio-ethical
  • Educational
  • Geo-political
  • Military-Intelligence
  • Values Culture
  • Relevance-Importance
  • Plausibility
  • Technical feasibility
  • Probability
  • Convergence character
  • Disruptive potential
  • Relative preference
  • Relative expectation
  • Instant Buzz Factor

Effectiveness -Robustness
  • Real uncertainties exposed, elaborated in
    different ways
  • Consensus on risks leads to clear divides between
    positives and negatives - OR
  • Strong and diverging pathways ensures issues and
    choices are clear with implications
  • Stakeholders articulate and begin to advocate new
    opportunities, strategies for avoidance of
  • Meta-insights emerge about the fundamental
    mission and its risk-reward systems

Environmental Scanning
  • Strategic Trends i.e. factors that shift as a
    result of change patterns, but we have little
    influence e.g. more nuclear equipped nations
    failing states proliferation
  • Critical Drivers and Uncertainties i. e.
    discernible change patterns that may be amenable
    to stakeholder actions e.g. global security
    major ST developments
  • Possible Shocks i.e. wild card, high impact,
    low probability events that alter fundamentals
    e.g. 9-11 Iran as a nuclear power

Macro Shaping Trends
  • Ambient Intelligence progress toward the
  • Miniaturization of Technology
  • Globalization of Capital, Terror , Disease,
  • Anti-globalization of Biodiversity, Culture,
  • De-Carbonization of Energy Economy
  • Harmonization - Standardization for Trade
  • Migration, Multi-Culturalism of Populations
  • Intensification, Differentiation, of Wealth
  • Bi-polarization of religious Values and Secular
  • Transformation, of Infrastructure Systems
  • Virtualization, Digitization Integration of
    Business-Professions, Production, Communications,
    Entertainment, Education
  • Acceleration of Knowledge Services as Economic
  • Proliferation of Surveillance - Security

Key Societal Change Domains
  • Demographics population shifts, immigration
  • Science Technology genomics, biotech,
    convergence, nanotech, telecom energy
  • Environment carrying capacity, global ecology,
  • Attitudes, Values, Beliefs from opinion to
    religion to geopolitical impacts on culture,
    security-terror etc.
  • Global Economy interdependent markets, trade,
    wealth shifts, productivity management of
  • Governance Institutions political
    organization, nascent, failed and rogue states
  • Evident Threats - to civilization, growth
    economies infrastructure and to specific

ONSA Foresight 2004 - 06
Canadian Foresight ONSA Led Canadian Foresight ONSA Led
Challenges Results
Future fuel- technology options, alternatives to conventional oil Technology roadmaps for bio-fuels, hydrogen-fuel cells , unconventional hydrocarbons
Technological innovation for the Canadian Health System Technology maps and health commercialization advice identified new technologies and regulatory stewardship
ST for public safety and all hazards Canadian security Threat scenarios, ST strategies for the DRDC PSEPC Center for Security Science, links with USDHS, Proteus Critical Thinking Game
How to manage public anxieties re animal diseases and mass culls-disposal Technology-communications measures for the CFIA to manage RD and threats to public health, and strategies for proactive public anxiety reduction
How bio-products might factor into our future economy Scenarios and Canadian policy drivers for emerging bio-product markets and development paths
ONSA Connections with Global Foresight Networks
  • USA National Science Advisor, Cyber Security Task
    Force, National Science Foundation, National
    Intelligence Council, Director of National
  • UK Chief Scientist and Foresight Office
  • Finland and Sweden Finnsight 2015, Swedish
    Foresight Laboratory - Vinnova
  • European Commission DG Research Euro Research
    Area Foresight Network Institute for Prospective
    Technology Studies, Framework Program 7
  • NISTEP Japan KISTEP Korea
  • APEC Centre for Technology Foresight , Industrial
    Science and Technology and Energy Working Groups
  • UN University Millennium Project
  • Germany Futur France Futuris

Foresight Process Overview
Define Project Topic
Review Current Situation
Identify Key Lenses
Answer Challenge Questions
Populate Each Scenario
Identify Change Drivers
Backcast to Present
Select Critical Drivers
Synthesis Recommendations
Identify Scenarios
Three Revolutions in Science
ORNL Cray X1
Advanced Computation
Systems Biology
Carbon Nanotubes Convergent Potentials
Electronic Properties
Structural properties Composites
  • The best field emitters known
  • Already developed for field emission displays,
  • Molecular wires
  • Semiconducting or metallic
  • Single-electron transistors demonstrated
  • Ballistic transport (109 A/cm2) up to 1 mA per
  • Strongest material known to man
  • 100 times stronger than steel, only one-sixth the
  • Stiffness-to-weight ratio 40x higher than that of
  • Electrical conductivity better than copper
  • Thermal conductivity greater than diamond
  • Hollow gas storage, drug delivery
  • Water filtration
  • Actuation demonstrated

Courtesy of Battelle - Dave Geohegan, ORNL
Controlled Bio-Energy Convergence
Post-genomic biology offers the promise of
controlled design of energy systems
The Billion-Ton Vision Biomass Could Displace
30 or More of Our Current Transportation Fuel
Research Methodology
  • Each technology/application area was evaluated
    by each expert panel member on three relevant
  • Commercial Potential
  • Technical Feasibility
  • Public Policy Issues

The midpoint of each team's evaluation are shown
in the following 3 diagrams
Convergent Technologies for Health and Life
Sciences 2020
Anticipated Market Size

Anticipated Feasibility
Convergent Technologies for Energy and the
Anticipated Market Size

Anticipated Feasibility
Convergent Technologies for Water, Food, and
Bio-fuels 2020
Anticipated Market Size

Anticipated Feasibility
Converging Technologies For Canada ?
  1. "Clean Coal" technologies
  2. Bio-nano-health Monitors
  3. Implantable Nanoarrays for Livestock
  4. "CO2 Sequestration" technologies
  5. Environmental nanobiosensors
  6. On-time Nano-vaccinology
  7. "Biomass ? Biofuels" technologies
  8. Medical "Tricorder"
  9. Smart Agri-bio Nanoencapsulation
  10. Food-tracking Nanotags
  11. Directed Evolution Chips

Extreme Views of Convergence
Trends in Nanotechnology
  • Smart materials with nano films, structures
  • Integration of functions and structure in
    membranes, fabrics, fibers, self powered
    entities, biomimetic materials
  • New environmental leaps in performance e.g water
    filtration and purification, biocidals,
    bioremediation and decontamination
  • Nano sensor networks, tracking capacities
    nano-electro-mechanics (eg HVAC embedded)
  • Wearable personalized nano sensors with data and
    communications capabilities
  • Energy and power efficiencies improvements,
    battery power management
  • Smart dust capability for widespread human ,
    environments surveillance
  • Computational devices embedded in consumer,
    commercial goods
  • Functional, programmable nanostructures for
    controlled drug delivery, performance of
    implants, protheses
  • New devices, building materials and fabrics that
    incorporate nano film solar power and are climate

Trends in Biotechnology
  • Control, improvements in living organisms
  • Bio-sensing at the micro and nano level, micro
    and nano electromechanics
  • Integration with wireless, RFID,
    photonics-molecular level cameras
  • Tissue engineering, artificial organs, implants
    and protheses
  • Targeted drug delivery and use of in vitro
  • Rapid scaleable bio-assays for molecule ID,
    medical diagnosis and forensics
  • Personalized medicine using large data sets of
    patient information, disease statistics, gene
    sequences and genotypes
  • Genetically modified insects to counter pathogen
  • In silico- computer testing and comprehensive
    modelling for drug characteristics, side effects
    and receptor simulation lab on chip
  • Molecular recognition targeted drug delivery to
    organs, tumours

Trends in Infotechnology Ambient Intelligence
  • Progress toward ubiquitous access and
  • Open source collaborative tools and deeper peer-
    to peer functionality
  • Continued migration towards device and functional
  • Infobased manufacturing, claytronics for
    distributed fabrication
  • Broader object based nodes and networks so
    everything can be smart and connected
  • Pervasive E Science and dynamic simulation and
  • Gaming for personal and organizational decisions,
  • Emerging horizons for faster, exponentially more
    powerful encryption, quantum information
  • Sustained info markets growth for surveillance,
    sensor networks, tracking capacities,
  • Wearable, implantable personalized micro-nano-bio
    info sensors with data and communications

Glimpses of the Nanocosm
  • Targeted delivery of nano-scale pharmaceuticals
  • Nanoparticles for cancer treatment
  • Smart bio-nano materials and implants
  • Nanosensor determined synthetic
  • environments
  • Nanosistors wavicles logic gates for
  • molecular DNA based computing
  • Impermeable, anti corrosive nano composite
  • Wearable polymer nano-electronics for
  • portable, personal bio-cogno self monitoring
  • Nanocosm by William Illsey Atkinson, Penguin
    Books Canada 2003

The Big Uncertainty
  • When, how and with what implications, nano
    level self assembly will be practical for not
    only new materials but new machines with new and
    amazing programmable capabilities

Pathways Toward Self Assembly
CRN Scenarios
  • New Arms Race Secret Military Development
  • Positive Expectations - Evolutionary Potential
  • Molecular Anarchy Redemption
  • Nano-Recede Elusive Drextech
  • And Not a Drop to Drink
  • Nano-Policy Crisis
  • Breaking the Fever
  • Newshound Notebook 2018
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