Welcome to This Week In Tomorrow.
It’s been two years since this project started, and over two hundred fifty posts and more than a hundred thousand visits later, it’s probably time to update just what this site is about.
My name is Richard Ford Burley, and for the most part I started this blog as a way to stay optimistic about the world. In my day job, I study Remix Culture and the Middle Ages, arguing that the way culture reproduces itself on the internet is a better model than print culture is for understanding the way culture reproduced itself before the advent of the printing press and copyright laws. But PhDs take a long time to get, they don’t pay well, and there aren’t a lot of jobs on the other side of them, so I started writing about the future in my time off.
And there’s so much to look forward to.
Science, skepticism, feminism, futurism: if you ask me, these are the antidotes to much of what ails the world. Science is about curiosity, about trying to understand the world with a methodology that admits its mistakes while building on them. It eschews ideology in favour of evidence, follows logic where it leads, and spends most of its time trying to prove itself wrong in order to better understand the world. Skepticism is an outgrowth of that, and sure, you’re going to be better skeptic the more you understand about science, but part of the project of this blog is to show that even a layperson can use critical reasoning to get a better handle on the world. You don’t need to be a scientist to know that vaccines don’t cause autism or that climate change is real. Sometimes I get it wrong, but that’s part of the project too: we live and learn. Feminism is part of the project, too: Feminism is about the equality of genders, sexualities, people. It’s about recognizing implicit bias and social pressures, and forces us to aim for a better, more egalitarian, more efficient and productive society. And that’s where futurism comes in: because in the end, this blog is all about the ways we’re going to get the future, the ways the world is changing now, and the ways we’re going to get there.
Because we’re already living in the future. From artificial hearts to virtual currencies, from genetic modification to drone airstrikes, for better or worse we’re going places. Why do we have eyes in the front of our heads?
So we can see where we’re going.
Thanks for coming along for the ride.
RFB : 1-Nov-2015