Forum 5: Life in 2030

The next few weeks ahead we will focus on issues such as Cyber Power, Cyber Security, Cyber Crime and Cyber War.

What is important in all those conversations are how will our lives change and what technologies will affect serious transformations

In that light go over this video and point out what you deem is important in the next 15 years that the panelists bring out and you also can introduce your own critiques to the panelists and even your peers



The forum will be open Monday 04/04 through 04/09 Sturday


53 thoughts on “Forum 5: Life in 2030

    Andrew Reiley said:
    April 4, 2016 at 9:25 pm

    First thing is first, 2030 is only 14 years away, which could mean that there is great change, not much, or we may not even be around anymore if Yellowstone blows. However, that being said, the panelists discussed many different changes that will be around that will alter the way human beings go through their daily lives. The part that struck me the hardest was the part about genetically modified babies and whether or not that is a good idea or not. The pros could be that they can make babies that would be able to be cured of certain diseases or be enhanced, however I do not believe that genetically modified babies will be as big of a thing as the panelists were suggesting because there are a lot of ethical problem associated with the process. I do believe, like one of the questioners said, that it would be more beneficial to the human race to make improvements to other animals, like pigs, so we can harvest their organs in order to make the quality of life better for those people who do not have healthy organs.
    Another interesting thing was how the space dude was predicting that we would be a multiplanetary species. That will require an enormous amount of AI and big data do work together, especially because he wants to mine stuff, which will have to be pretty much all technological and mechanical and then somehow reenter orbit. On paper, it sounds like a good idea, but is it?
    the rest of the panel was super interesting, but 14 years is a short time, and even with the rate that technology is advancing right now, I do not believe life will be all that different. The autonomous car is already a thing, even though it is in its early stages. For all the improvements in life, there will be a ton of policy that needs to be changed which takes time. Transportation will change, but I see life in 2030 similar to life today, just with much more AI.

      Michael LeFevre said:
      April 5, 2016 at 7:50 pm

      Andrew, I too believe that 2030 is not enough time for sufficient advancements in humans as “multi-planet” species and as those mentioned in the video claim, but I disagree with your claim about genetically modified babies. With scientific data, and technology advancing at extremely alarming rates, we have already seen doctors and companies genetically modify cells to produce animals, and work on to develop cures. I think this advancement in stem cell research is crucial for the survival of humanity as we will be able to combat deadly diseases, and continue to find medication and treatment for illnesses. I do not believe people will rely on their ethics, when people are developing treatments, and we will see such a social revolution and flow of this information among countries that we should embrace this data, and accept how different our society has become.

        Emilio Nilooban said:
        April 8, 2016 at 2:12 pm

        I agree with Michael with the fact that we should not be afraid to move forward and accept the changes that come with the advancement of technology, During the time of The Great Plague, millions were suffering from the bubonic plague and the mortality rate on the disease far exceeded the rate of survival even with the remedies that were available at the time. I’m sure that if this sort of technology was accessible during that time period, people would disregard the ethical implications that might attribute to the procedure in order to cure those infected and save lives. I think it was Mr. Anderson that this brought up on the panel, the chances of encountering hurdles and complications as a result of the change in technology will be inevitable, but if it means ensuring the survival of humanity it’s worth taking risks. However, I do believe that people should have the liberty to choose what treatments they want and they should not be forced to use a particular treatment.

        Timothy Lasusa said:
        April 9, 2016 at 4:47 pm

        I agree with Michael and Emilio. When we live in such a fast rising but also competitive world ethics are becoming a thing of the past. Governments and private companies are focused on their own success and personal developments that they will forgo ethics to get what they want. When it comes to genetically engineered babies I feel as though the majority of the public will also forgo the ethics principles that go along with creating these modifications. In this type of world, if there is a demand for any type of product, there will always be a supplier, and I feel as though people who can afford things like gene modifications will do what they can to have this.

      Will Kauppila said:
      April 7, 2016 at 3:57 pm


      I share your skepticism about the potential for genetically modified babies, as well as becoming a multi-planetary species by 2030. 14 years is certainly a long time, and there are a number of uncertain variables for both including ethics, the scope and scale of technology growth, and the securitization of big data. That does not even factor in the uncertainty related to the constantly changing political/social climates and the global economy.

      With that being said, significant advances in AI will undoubtedly continue as acknowledged by the panelists. My biggest concern and interest is the impact that it will have on employment rates around the world. While shifting to autonomous cars, and self-monitoring factories can greatly increase productivity and efficiency, what are the implications for the everyday citizen’s ability to secure a vocation? I have a hard time believing that there will be ample new jobs created in the tech sector to replace the ones that taxi and factory workers will inevitably lose the machine. It seems that there is great potential for the elites who are already in place to utilize AI to protect and maintain their status. At the same time, this would most likely increase class stratification worldwide, and thus create more volatile climates going forward.

        Emilio Nilooban said:
        April 8, 2016 at 3:16 pm

        In regards to autonomous cars and self-monitoring factories, I believe that there are even additional implications that don’t only jeopardize peoples’ jobs but the security of societies in general. The idea that these cars and factories can get hacked into is something of great concern and it justifies the importance encryption has in national security. Cars that drive on their own can get hacked into and be used for acts of terrorism or other crimes. Hackers can also can hack into the production networks of factories and cause components within those factories to fail or overdrive. With the creation of the Stuxnet virus, which can be seen as one of the world’s first digital weapon, we can see how destructive these attacks can be. In this case, Stuxnet was able to do physical damage on centrifuges targeting Iran’s uranium enrichment program.

      cscott66 said:
      April 9, 2016 at 10:19 pm

      I agree that 2030 is too close for a lot of what was talked about. Technological advances have taken a huge step but they do take a long time to happen. We are closer to 2030 than we are 2000 which is crazy to think about. Yes technology has taken huge steps toward but I find it hard to believe the advances that are predicted. We do have self driving cars now so I guess a lot could happen in 14 years. As Andrew said 14 years can mean a whole hell of a change or nothing at all. It’s scary to think about. But I do see transportation being on a whole new level as well as cell phones. I think they things we carry in our pockets will be out of this world.

    Michael LeFevre said:
    April 5, 2016 at 7:42 pm

    After seeing the crowds response to, “would life would be better in 2030?” I think it is obvious that there is a very optimistic approach to the future and that is seen through much advancement. Whether the push for genome replication allows us to create a cure for diseases, or the future allows for humans to travel to space and live in space, the possibilities are endless, and through technology and the advancements among Cyber Power, I too have an optimistic outlook on the future. While thinking about what life would be like in 2030, and having low-cost space travel and access to more information about ourselves and planet, is very powerful and the abilities to understand our preferences and activity in our brain is crucial for consumer operability, and could have immense implications on our economy. But while this could have a beneficial impact, it could also negatively affect citizens whom information is stored in the Cloud, and just exactly what information is stored while wearing a Fit Bit, or free app from the iTunes store or any other tracking device. There are so many questions, and so few answers to hackers already, or companies taking advantage of the data collected, and the legal precautions, and policies that will need to be implemented within the next 15 years are crucial and I look forward to being among the generation that influences this movement.

      Andrew Reiley said:
      April 5, 2016 at 9:21 pm

      Michael, I agree with you on the topic of how people who store most of their information in the cloud could be hurt in the 2030. The amount of information that people are putting out there about themselves through apps and fitness trackers is incredible. I believe that they will be more heavily targeted for advertisements or could be ripped apart by haters for their political view. It makes me a little uncomfortable just how much information about some people is out there, and while we all like to share/brag about accomplishments, there may already be too much about ourselves out there. For instance, the number of Facebook pictures that each one of us has online is on average a couple thousand. who knows who is viewing them, but once someone hits enter, they are out there. What I am trying to say is that we already have so much of our personal info that we ourselves put on the net, and with the rate that everyone is using the web, a rate that will expand, I am a little scared of just how much info will be out there about ourselves by 2030.

        Dylan Kirby said:
        April 6, 2016 at 1:15 pm

        Andrew and Michael, I as well agree with the idea of cloud users being hurt by 2030 because even I have a lot of personal information on the cloud that I am unsure about how I will ever securely get it off. Furthermore to accompany your point about the information that is created with the help of wearable tech a powerful quote from the talk was, “all this information is monetized”. This quote is powerful to me because while all the different outlets to gather analytics may be good for the consumer and the greater population, there are however people who are capitalizing on this gain. – so I am a little unsure how I really feel due to the amount of bias these professionals are subject to.

      Thomas Mathiasen said:
      April 7, 2016 at 2:45 pm

      I think you touch on something interesting here, Michael. The legal ramifications for illegally accessing people’s individual and in some cases, very personal health data, could pose a serious challenge. While have certainly seen some of these issues brought to bear, but individual examples against everyday people have not made headlines as have the major cyber breaches. How the justice department and the American legal system goes after individual cyber hacks will be interesting to see.

      Jonathan Bucknall said:
      April 7, 2016 at 4:20 pm

      Michael, you bring up a very important point about Cloud sharing and I think that this idea is so new that no one really knows what is going to end up happing with the information that is stored there. People today have been putting very sensitive information on the Cloud not realizing the potential risk of having that information stored there. That is why the topic of cyber policing is such a hot topic because of the damage that hackers can do to a huge percent of the population by releasing information that is stored in the Cloud. However, the idea of cyber policing is such a sensitive subjected because people do not want to be told what they can or cannot do on the internet so I believe that people should make a decision on whether or not they want sensitive information to be viewed by strangers on the Cloud or be protected.

    Michael LeFevre said:
    April 5, 2016 at 8:16 pm

    Another importance of the technological advances that will arise in the next 14 years encompasses the transparency of government and democratic shift of nations. As all panelists agreed on, life in 2030 will be more improved and could positively affected consumer markets. With the collection of more data, we will have more efficient statistics and data that we can use to our advantage. While the people keep supplying more data, and with the combination of good governance, I believe this data will be used effectively. More data will allow for proper precautions to be taken before a natural disaster hits, see an economic recession forming before it hits, or track how healthy the human body is, or as Mr. Anderson adds, our overall education will improve drastically. Our intelligence as a society will improve, and we will be able to stay more informed, educated, and on top of our work with the advancements. We will become a more effective, improved, and healthier globalized world in 2030, and I look forward to the amount of data that can be “shared and collected in a transparent world”, as Dr. Farahany says.

      Andrew Reiley said:
      April 5, 2016 at 9:23 pm

      I don’t think we will be ready for the natural disasters that are going to hit even will all the data. I am a first believer that once the yellowstone super volcano goes off, we will pretty much all die. Yes, the precautions will be known, but once that happens, the ash will spread so quickly that we won’t even know what to do, no matter how much preparation is put in.

        Dylan Kirby said:
        April 8, 2016 at 10:14 pm

        Michael, I disagree with the points you make about about how the increase in data sensors and data entry points will be able to better prepare citizens in the event of a natural disaster and economic recession. Although the data will help prepare citizens, it will not however stop the inevitable natural disaster from happening and destroying specific areas.

        Furthermore, in terms of recessions, I am a little concerned about the repercussions that may arise from financial institutions taking huge risks and not worrying about the outcome because so called “data” will prevent a recession. So yes it may help signal a recession, but I doubt that it has the potential to stop a recession

    Dylan Kirby said:
    April 6, 2016 at 1:06 pm

    Being 2016 and in 14 years it is 2030 I am a little shocked after watching this video. Although the group of wholesome “professionals” preached an optimistic outlook on the technologies that will transform the way we use data, I am personally a little skeptical of their claims. Firstly, I disagree with the idea of by 2030 we will leave earth and start to inhabitant other planets thanks to low cost space travel. Furthermore, the guy who is a “space miner” I think he is just living in a fairy tale world. A second part of the talk that I did really like however was the idea of the quantified self and the wearable tech that will provide the healthcare industry with more measurable metrics to increase health. Bridging off the idea off increasing health, I thought that the idea of designer babies was quite interesting. This arises the question that if we start to actually have designer babies, who is liable if god for bid one of the babies that was produced has a problem? Is it the company or the parents liability?

    In addition, if the idea of designer babies is something that actually does happen by 2030 and our society gets to the point of building the ultimate human (smarter more competitive) what will happen when we cannot advance the human capability anymore. Or in other terms, when the ability to increase the human capability plateaus is that going to be the end of humans?

    Other than those two abstract ideas, I thought that this talk was relevant to the security aspect of the cyberspace world. Those who can afford to have their data securitized will while leaving those who cannot afford to safeguard their data they will be left in a data divide just as we touched on during the first forum.

      Ness Billimoria said:
      April 9, 2016 at 3:01 pm

      I have to agree with Dylan regarding his first point. I’m sure a lot of people will be excited for space travel, if it does exist by 2030. However, a majority of human beings will either not have the finances nor the inclination for something so bizarre. Personally, I feel that it is more of a novelty experience rather than something that can change the way we live. I completely agree that this guy is living in a fairytale world. He is obviously intelligent, but I just cannot understand how he is making these outlandish claims at a forum as prestigious as the WEF.

    Tim Lasusa said:
    April 6, 2016 at 11:44 pm

    When watching this video I too was a bit skeptical of what the panelists were claiming would be around in 14 years, but at the same time I do not totally write them off. I think many of the claims they were making about new technology are very feasible and could easily come about in the years to come, possibly even sooner than we think. But I think one thing that they somewhat briefly touch on, but maybe don’t point out enough is the economy. I think the economy will have the biggest impact on what technologies get developed. A strong economy would likely see a stronger series of technological developments while a weak economy may set back these developments by a few years or even more. The panelist mention how Europe has the largest decisions to make if they are to get back on track and stay with the rest of the world, but we could also see a collapse from one of the current front runners which could lead to major stoppage in development.

      Tom Mathiasen said:
      April 8, 2016 at 11:09 pm

      Tim makes a good point about the economy. Economic innovation can often times lead to these new technologies being implemented or not. The strength of the economy will be crucial for how these developments occur and their success. I think that many technologies have their success driven from economic well being (example the computer boom at the beginning of the 90’s) and I would be interested to see if these panelists predictions would in fact be accurate.

    Thomas Mathiasen said:
    April 7, 2016 at 2:42 pm

    I thought that two of the panelists brought up very interesting developments we will see in the year 2030. The first that was brought up was the idea of a “quantified self.” We live in a world, and will continue to live in a world, where our heart rates, blood pressure, fitness data and other important records are kept and stored on fitness watches or iPhones. I think it will be interesting to see how this develops. Maybe in 2030, we might have the technology to detect when a heart attack may occur before it happens, for example, using the information that a fitness watch detects from your body.

    The second idea that I found compelling was the idea of “cognitive assistance.” In many ways, our phones replace rolodexes, calendars, notes, and lists, items that we used to have to keep separate or on post its. The consolidation of this information onto one device, say an iPhone, shows how simplified our world is coming, especially when it comes to daily tasks. While I’m unsure of how that development will change in the year 2030 and what other cognitive assisters may be available to us, I’m sure that there will be tremendous innovative improvements.

    Those two examples I felt would be the most relevant in a person’s daily life. Sure, while the other technology developments may benefit mankind as a whole, these two examples, I believe these will be the most influential in people’s daily lives.

    Jonathan Bucknall said:
    April 7, 2016 at 4:11 pm

    I believe 2030 is not far enough in the future to gauge whether or not life will be better than it is today, that is only giving humanity 14 years to improve life on the planet. I am not saying that life cannot or will not improve in 14 years saying that dramatic or great change to occur in that time frame is too optimistic. I found it extremely interesting how the professionals on this panel have so much trust on technology to help improve human life, for example space travel. I find it extremely unlikely that we are going to have low cost space travel. I am skeptical of this because of the cost of fuels and the technology it takes just to get into space so I don’t see in the near future any changes that will change the cost of space travel. To add on to why cheap space travel is unrealistic is because even if there is cheap space travel around the year of 2030 the amount of money that went into the research and the different attempts in trying to get cheaper space travel would be such a tremendous amount that it would take years to even the cost out.
    Another example I am skeptical about is the genetically modified babies. I know today that parents can choose the eye color of their babies and they can influence whether or not their baby is going to be a girl or a boy. In theory, genetically modified babies would be a good idea because it could completely kill certain diseases and illnesses before the child is even born. Besides the ethical reasons of doing it is that it could create super diseases that are even stronger and tougher to treat which is scary to imagine.

      Will Kauppila said:
      April 7, 2016 at 5:12 pm


      I agree with your point about designer babies. The level of control you can have already today in choosing characteristics of your baby is shocking to me, and has me wondering if we will be able to edit close to every feature of the body by 2030. I am also skeptical because I think there will be a lot of pushback against this very new technology. Undoubtedly, only a select few will have access to this technology at its outset, creating heightened class tensions. I also hadn’t thought about the potential for genetic modification in cancer/disease treatment and research that you brought up. It seems like there is a real possibility for using genome editing as a public good going forward, but the unknowns and risks also mean it could have dangerous unforeseen consequences. I think that the public needs to be given more access to the existing information on this very unfamiliar (and scary for some) technology in order to have an effective and transparent debate.

    Patrick M Sullivan said:
    April 7, 2016 at 4:31 pm

    One interesting outlook on the future a panelist noted was the impact on education new technologies would have. The much more interesting and talked about topic with new technology in education is at its higher levels, like high school, college, or graduate school. Rarely is it mention in primary or middle schools, when education is at its most raw form. The panelist Moore from Carnegie Melon University tells the crowd work is being done at his university on Artificial Intelligence. One vision that he describes as highly likely to be plausible by 2030 is Cognitive Assistance or “the little speaker on your shoulder giving you advice all the time”. For a teacher this would be a extremely important device to aid you and the students. This will inherently make sure that students don’t fall through the cracks at a young age because we know now that all students do not learn the same way. From the very foundation of their education, if we can become more efficient at teaching children necessary fundamental lessons at the onset of their development stages, we will be fostering a smarter, more well rounded, and informed generation of children.
    On a national level, the US will need to use this if we are going to try to keep up with India’s young and expansive workforce. Despite funding having much less funding per child, India has proven that they have a better educational system in place then America. Combined with the number of young citizens that will be searching for a job soon, the private sector will look to recruit talent from India rather than from home. And why shouldn’t they? If better qualified students in large numbers are looking for jobs than businesses will always hire the more qualified candidate. Whether or not this means international economic centres will move from the New York City or London to Mumbai, is yet to be determined. But if other students like myself want to compete for jobs in this ever changing job market, we will have to be ready to display a wide range of skills that some international prospects might have better mastered.

    Will Kauppila said:
    April 7, 2016 at 4:51 pm

    The potential for genome editing, low cost space travel, IoT monitoring or the quantified self, continuing growth of big data, and cognitive assistance technologies all could be within grasp by 2030, according to the panelists. It was interesting to note however, that the expert in each of their fields seemed confident that their own technologies had the strongest chance of becoming integrated into daily life, even though they agreed that there is a high degree of uncertainty going forward.

    Toomas Hendrick Ilves’ prediction that the biggest concerns related to big data growth would shift from data privacy to data integrity was also particularly interesting to me. This suggests that the capability for carrying out similar cyber attacks to stuxnet will be more widespread going forward, and thus could create a more multipolar system, and even distribution of global cyber power. At the same time, the possibility of carrying out a cyber attack with ease in 2030 may lead some authoritarian states to begin a cyber arms race of sorts which would have an unpredictable and volatile outcome certainly.

    The complexities related to coding of autonomous cars related to crash safety decisions, as referenced by Mr. Moore brings up a bigger issue that he very succinctly summed up, “the fact that there are difficult questions like these should not deter us from continuing to use technologies to better our lives.” My question for him would be what about in situations like genome editing or asteroid mining, where the debate is more around if they will better our lives as a whole.

    Emilio Nilooban said:
    April 7, 2016 at 10:54 pm

    The thought of being able to create designer babies and choosing their aesthetic and mental characteristics (i.e. intelligence & longevity) is something that is remarkable and shows technology’s ability to alter genomes in order to better a person’s potential and attain maximum efficiency. It’s interesting to see how genome alteration can foster competition and benefit society as a whole, giving countries who are capable of doing these arrangements with an upper edge in comparison to other countries around the world. However, altering someone’s DNA definitely raises ethical concerns and, if executed poorly, can result in complications. It also questions whether this alteration obstructs natural ethos in humanity and whether these modifications are worth bypassing the natural evolutionary process of human development. Personally, I support genome alteration to the extent that it helps cures diseases and remedy serious health complications that people are struggling with today.

      Michael LeFevre said:
      April 9, 2016 at 10:59 pm

      Emilio, I too think that the ability to create designer babies would be beneficial, and allow society to create cures to diseases that take so many people’s lives today. I do not believe that too many people will be turned away because of the moral aspect, and I think that people should open the technological and medical benefits, with open doors. Altering someone’s DNA will not only help in the ability to cure diseases, but will also help with organ transplants and make it much easier for people that have been in accidents and fatal crashes. I think that people will accept this new wave of technology and I am looking forward to what is in store for our medical industry.

    Emilio Nilooban said:
    April 7, 2016 at 11:54 pm

    Mr. Moore mentioned the importance of new cognitive assistance technologies that will be innovated by 2030 in which I believe is more likely to occur. As Mr. Moore mentioned already, google searches and the implementation of Siri on smart phones demonstrates the potential technology has in ameliorating education, productivity, overall quality of life and provide general assistance. Of course, some IoTs have already taken form of cognitive appliances and they will continue to evolve in order to perform even better functions. Within households, washing machines can become cognitive appliances that can alert you if a certain article of clothing should be washed in a different water temperature. Cognitive appliances will certainly be our technological sidekick for multiple purposes and help us perform our jobs more effectively and live life more conveniently. In addition, the idea of carrying a single device with an AI that can play as a virtual helper in which helps us get through our daily routine and solve problems will be evolutionary – especially if its technology that goes beyond just searching the solution on your phone.

    Ness Billimoria said:
    April 8, 2016 at 5:14 pm

    2030 is not far away at all. Throughout this class we have read that technological advancement is growing rapidly in terms of Big Data, Artificial Intelligence, wearables, and many other realms of technology.
    This panel put together by the Economist and WEF has some of the smartest and most knowledgeable people speaking about the future. All of them had fabulous and amazing things to say about what they see as the change having the largest impact on us in 2030.
    However, what stands out to me is Eric Anderson’s talk about his company, Planetary Holdings USA. He claims that in the next 10-14 years, we will be travelling in space. That is not what shocks me. What stands out to me is the political aspect of this claim. Anderson says that he worked tirelessly with US lawmakers to help pass a Bill that allows his company (as a private entity) to lay claim to asteroids for the purpose of mining. I do not like the fact that the US feels that it is entitled to be the entity to allow or disallow a company to do so. It is a typical case of the US’ hegemonic plans, whether or not it is intentional.
    I feel that the genome engineering spoken about, the artificial intelligence aspect, etc, all have their share of ethical dilemmas to deal with, but this case is more political than ethical and therefore does in fact have a correct answer as to what the outcome should be.

      Henry Preston said:
      April 10, 2016 at 2:40 pm

      Ness, this issue of space colonization is absolutely an issue that will lead to conflict between world powers. In the same way that European colonial powers ate up lands across the world, space exploitation will lead to areas of space being divided up among those able to lay claims to it. That’s all well and good until two countries/actors claim the same asteroid/planet. At that point, alliances will be tested and conflicts will arise, as we have seen in the past (ex. WW1)

    Trent Rosenberg said:
    April 8, 2016 at 9:03 pm

    What stands out to me most in this video is the editing of of our own DNA. Jennifer Doudna explains that this will allow us to make what some have called “designer babies” as well as cure diseases caused by variations in our DNA. While this process obviously raises a lot of questions and may have some very concerned one of my biggest questions is what will this do to sports? We often think of professional athletes as the best among society physically in their given sport, but will this change that so that everyone is on an equal playing field? Or will it be determined by money? For example who ever has the most money will be able to afford the best “enhancements” and other are left on the outside looking in, which would essentially be society now just with more enhanced humans. Finally will we go to far? Will this ruin sports as we know them today and create leagues of overpowered humans doing things that weren’t originally humanly possible?
    I still am not sure what exactly these enhancements would entail but if they are strong enough to fix the radiation poisoning from going into space then they must be pretty powerful.

    Sam McGowan said:
    April 8, 2016 at 9:20 pm


    I think you bring up an interesting point. I am also a sport fan and am also not sure what kind of consequences this could have for professional and nonprofessional sports across the world. However, one thing that I think needs to be brought up is the reaction by the audience to the questions posed about allowing designer babies. Many of them were not in favor of it which I thinks begs the question, if this technology is available (which it appears it will be) will people opt to use it or will they rebel against it?

      Andrew reiley said:
      April 8, 2016 at 9:26 pm

      I have another comment regarding sports for both Trent and Sam, so do you guys think that major league sports teams would start to invest in genetically modified babies to try to copy or invest long term in their current superstars?
      I personally think it would make sense, although they would have to ensure that the kid stays interested in the sport. However the more I think about it, the more politically incorrect it seems

        Trent Rosenberg said:
        April 8, 2016 at 9:30 pm

        I think we may start to see major league sports groom children much like the European soccer leagues do. Right now, players are assembled from all over, but if we can create designer babies that have the necessary traits professional sports organizations may start to recruit kids earlier and then draft from there.

        Sam McGowan said:
        April 8, 2016 at 9:34 pm

        I’d agree with Trent. I think professional organizations would be stupid to not use this technology if available. Lets think about it. There job is to win and make money. This would ensure that they have the “best” athletes available to them at all times and that they never run out. I also don’t think that this would eliminate drafts and things like that, it would just become less necessary as you already have the players under your control. However that also leads to a question about eligibility and schooling, but I think it would be tough to implement rules on these subjects.

        Dylan Kirby said:
        April 9, 2016 at 3:36 pm


        That is a really interesting point that you brought up at sport teams investing in genetically modified babies. To elaborate on that point do you think to should be deemed illegal to do so?

        Trent Rosenberg said:
        April 9, 2016 at 8:29 pm

        Dylan I know you posed this question to Andrew, but I think it would be hard to regulate teams. We already see how hard it is for professional sports to catch steroid users with new ways and new products coming out all the time. If designer babies are a possibility I have a feeling it will be difficult to keep them out of sports, especially if its widely accepted in society (BIG “if”). Also apart from medical records how would one be able to tell that a human has been genetically modified? If all we have are medical records, I think all we are going to see is a market for doctors willing to modify and then forge documents saying they didn’t.

      Trent Rosenberg said:
      April 8, 2016 at 9:28 pm


      Thats an interesting point, but I also think we have to take into consideration the role government might play in all of this. As Moore mentioned if one government starts to implement this technology then it is likely more and more governments will follow and soon the choice might be out of citizens hands. They name China in this video quite often and I think thats an interesting country to use, because I think many Americans see China as a threat and don’t want to be “surpassed” by them. If China does implement this technology to create “designer babies” then I think it is inevitable the U.S. will follow.

        Thomas Mathiasen said:
        April 9, 2016 at 2:40 pm

        I don’t think that the US will follow China in this regard. Our freedoms is the thing that sets us apart from China and by a government telling us to “modify” our children, will create some serious constitutional questions. Now granted, I do not believe our government will ever tell us how our children should look and be, but I do think it’s an interesting debate if that situation ever came about. Yes, it’s a hypothetical situation, but still one that would warrant an interesting debate.

    Sam McGowan said:
    April 8, 2016 at 10:06 pm

    Trent I think thats a good point but its also important to keep in mind that The U.S. is more of a democracy in China and even if China begins to implement this U.S. citizens might still be against it, and therefore render the government incapable of acting even if China begins to beat us. That said, I do agree that there is a fear of China and that if they begin to use it many may be more willing then they were previously.

    Sam McGowan said:
    April 8, 2016 at 11:05 pm

    As many of my classmates have already pointed out, the year 2030 is not very far away at all. Despite some of the skepticism about whether we will reach the goals the panelists predicted, I find myself very optimistic that we will indeed be close to the predicted advancements. While it is true that this is only 14 years away and thats not much time, we have made absolutely tremendous strides in the last 14 years and I believe we will only keep going.

    One of the more interesting aspects to me, and after reading some of the other opinions was clearly interesting to my classmates as well was the “designer babies”. Clearly there are huge implications for this, especially ethically, but also as Trent and I discussed, in the world of sports and more generally in terms of everyday life. One thing that I think Trent and I didn’t discuss was the idea of choice for the Baby. We already don’t pick a lot of things in life, but adding things like eye color, skin tone, etc. to that list seems more than a little concerning.

    I also thought Will brought up an excellent point about the self driving cars, and especially when he referenced the quote, “the fact that there are difficult questions like these should not deter us from continuing to use technologies to better our lives.” I too think that we can’t shy away from development. We have to continue to push ourselves and see just what we are capable of accomplishing.

    Timothy Lasusa said:
    April 9, 2016 at 3:07 pm

    I think looking past 2030 a little bit, one thing we will have to think about is that more and more people are going to be living for longer and the world population will only increase. Now that we are trying to make things safer and healthier, like self driving cars or even genetically enhanced babies that resist diseases, how are we in the world going to be able to have enough resources to keep people alive and happy. One aspect of the video I found to be interesting was the idea of space travel and astroid mining. I think that Anderson has a good point in that we will have to start looking elsewhere other than our own planet to help aid in providing necessary materials for our planet.

    Ness Billimoria said:
    April 9, 2016 at 3:12 pm

    A lot has been said about these genetically modified embryos and “designer babies”. I’d like to add that I am not against the technology being used. What I do have a problem with is the ethics of this technology. Is it really ethical to custom make and pick and choose everything about your baby? In vitro fertilization already sort of allows us to sort of pick the male who’s sperm we would use for the baby. However, I feel by manipulating the genes of the embryo completely, it would really be unethical and it would again, create a more divided society between the rich who can afford to get the “perfect child” and those who cannot afford to choose to do so. It also increases genetic divide in society with people being more judgmental regarding those who can and cannot pay for this genetic treatment.

    Timothy Lasusa said:
    April 9, 2016 at 3:16 pm

    One idea that I believe we should keep in mind as we look towards our future is the idea that the population is growing and will only continue to grow. As we develop new technology that will make our lives easier and healthier, such as genetically enhanced babies and other advancements in medicine, more and more people will be living longer and less people will be dying. The population will put pressure on out governments and environment to provide the necessary goods and materials needed to survive. I think Anderson brings up a good in that we may need to look elsewhere for materials. I think astroid mining and space travel ,although slightly out of reach, may be the key to humanities survival. Although this is a long way away, its never too early to start development in this area.

    Andrew Weimer said:
    April 9, 2016 at 5:18 pm

    I was struck by everyones comments on the board but thought that some ideas were a bit more realistic than others. For example, I thought it was almost funny listening to the man who was talking about going into space in our future. I believe that we are a long ways away from being a species that travels to and inhabits other planets. The idea itself of inhabiting other planets to deal with the population problem the world will have is a good one but its just not in our possible options. The problem with his solution is that, to make any significant difference we would have to move an enormous amount of people to outer-space which would be outrageously expensive, and no one would pay for it. How are we supposed to get people to live in outer-space when we cant even get them to live in Detroit? These are very smart people but I think this guys idea needs some tweaking if he wants other people to take it seriously. It is a smart idea to travel between planets but for now it is smarter for humans figure things out on earth before going to space. Most other panel members also agreed that this was somewhat fairy tale of a plan although he was one of the few people that tried to address the population problem.

    Andrew Weimer said:
    April 9, 2016 at 5:32 pm

    One discussion point I found to be a bit controversial was the idea of whether or not to use human genome editing. This is something that we as humans are able to do already so most of the members of the panel were talking about long term effects of genome editing. I think that genome editing is a stupid idea that should not be used. I think it would be pretty ignorant to assume that the human race would be better off is everyone was immune to all diseases. I believe this would directly lead to a population problem and eventually a global crisis problem. We cannot have everyone live forever or else we would run the world even further into the ground by overpopulating and over consuming natural resources. Lets remember that 2030 is only 14 years away and we are talking about genetically modifying human beings to be immune to diseases, physically superior than normal humans, and with a higher brain capacity than other humans. To be honest, I don’t understand the purpose of this. We currently have people like Cam Newton, Lebron James, and Michael Phelps who have each changed the way their sport is played because of their pure athleticism and also blown away records of past legends who were at the top during their time. With people advancing in every field of life, I don’t see a reason to speed things up unnaturally. In my opinion, I don’t think its a good idea to mess around with human genetics and I believe that we don’t need any help in advancing our body or mind.

      Jake Levin said:
      April 9, 2016 at 11:22 pm

      I definitely agree that the issue of overpopulation is a potential byproduct of human genome modification. However I feel that such technological advancements in today’s society will only serve to benefit those who can afford it, at least initially. A major concern I had when learning about the possibilities of genetic modification and designer babies was how it could further increase the stark differences between not just the developing and developed world, but the rich and poor in North America. I feel that the novel technologies discussed by the panel will initially be a luxury good that only wealthy individuals will have access too. Be it an advanced form of medicine curing a formerly incurable disease or a self driving car, I feel that rich people living easier and healthier lives than the masses will only widen the inequality gap in America.

      Jake Levin said:
      April 9, 2016 at 11:32 pm

      Also you bringing up the potential of there being genetically modified athletes in the future forced me to consider the implications of such technological advances in international sports competitions. I feel that the need for country’s to assert their global supremacy through performing well in sports will further drive genetic modification efforts. If athletes who technically aren’t “natural” are allowed to compete, countries will do whatever it takes to give their competitors an advantage. This is both exciting and worrying for me. On one hand, who doesn’t want to see stronger, faster, and more agile athletes. Seeing a guy hit a 600 foot home run or a woman dunk from the free throw line would be insane yet awesome to watch. However such genetic modifications could also compromise the integrity of certain sports. It will be interesting to see how international governing bodies of sports competitions will react to genetically modified human beings. Will they have a seperate division to compete in or will it not matter at all if all elite athletes of the future have some sort of genetic modification

      Henry Preston said:
      April 10, 2016 at 2:35 pm

      While I agree with a lot of what you’ve said, I do think that there are positives to genome editing, such as increased IQ, physical abilities, and longevity. That said, if the entire population’s genome is restructured to become more similar in its resiliency, viruses will evolve to target that one genome, and many more people will be susceptible to that one virus due to the lack of variance in our genomes. So yes, I am worried that this could lead to humans being affected in the same way as GMO crops by evolved viruses and bacteria.

    cscott66 said:
    April 9, 2016 at 10:25 pm

    As many have said before me, the panel is very optimistic. Maybe I’m pessimistic but u don’t see some of the advances that the panel does. Genome duplication seems a little far fetched to me. I don’t see that much advancement in that little time but who knows. I think transportation will be hugely upgraded as they said. I think that we as a society are advancing a a good pace and don’t genome modification. Also people should not be made to live longer because as it is we are living longer and are already over using our natural potential. I think that transportation will be a huge upgrade and smart cities will be an awesome upgrade for society

      Henry Preston said:
      April 10, 2016 at 2:30 pm

      That’s an interesting point that you brought up Colin, and I agree that people should not continue prolonging their life spans beyond reason. I think that people nowadays are outliving their usefulness, and more specifically, their bodies are surviving long beyond their mental capabilities. So, what society is left with is elderly people whose lives we can prolong, but who aren’t able to function as they used to, which is a sad and unnatural state.

    Jake Levin said:
    April 9, 2016 at 11:48 pm

    One thing I found really interesting from this discussion was the notion of space travel. If people are planning to live permanently on somewhere other than earth, how will international sovereignty be asserted in such an unknown environment? Clearly space endeavors such as asteroid mining have the potential to be extremely profitable, so how will countries negotiate who has access to what? I feel that countries will start to lay claim to certain aspects of such an unknown environment. This drive for national supremacy should drive the development of space travel. It will be interesting to see how international leaders interact with each other in regard to this topic. Will allied countries cooperate or will it be a free for all for these possible valuable planets and resources?

      Henry Preston said:
      April 10, 2016 at 2:26 pm

      Space travel, and specifically commercialized space travel, is an inspiring avenue of growth that will likely develop immensely in the near future, and I think that allied countries will have to work together to colonize space. Likely, we will see three main actors, the US, Russia and China, vying for space supremacy in the second space race, but unlike the last one, I don’t think this one will have an end.

    Jake levin said:
    April 9, 2016 at 11:59 pm

    I really enjoyed the speculation about the potential educational benefits that can be brought about by improvements in technology. The IOT’s discussed by the panel have the ability to increase our knowledge about all facets of life. We are starting to be informed more than ever about our health, learning habits, and how we live our life in general through devices such as the Fitbit. Future things like “cognitive assistance” will force us to be even more accountable for our actions, which I think in turn will generate improvements in education and overall quality of life. People will begin to have less and less excuses to be uneducated and unhealthy, and I feel that it is our duty as humans to utilize all forms of IOT’s made available to us as it will only serve to benefit the technological lifestyle we are beginning to embrace

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