September 11, 2006

great vernor vinge talk at AGC

"Ubiquitous computing is sort of a slippery term. As with treason, it’s mainly a matter of dates."

Now that's a quote for the ages ;-) Vernor Vinge, one of my sci-fi heroes and author of the recent and hearty ubicomp-infused novel Rainbows End, gave a provocative speech about the future at the Austin Games Conference last week. Mark Wallace transcribes Vinge's talk for us here (Mark's 3pointD blog focuses on "the metaverse and 3D web", and looks quite interesting).

"If you take together all of the things I have been pushing here, there really is a situation where cyberspace has leaked into the real world, in fact the title of the talk was Inside Out, which was intended to convey the notion of what was inside box in all eras up to ours, in this sort of era is outside...

"Then there are microduration labor markets, a casual game that could be the end of occupations. To the extent that you have any spare time at all, if you’re in an environment like the one I’m describing here and you’re a flexible person with some expertise in something, that means you can actually make money on any job you can undertake and complete in 30 seconds... (I wonder if he's seen Mycroft?)

"A more extreme thing that many of us would be quite uneasy about, but it’s one thing I’m intrigued by is the notion of lifestyle cults. It’s something akin to a total information awareness system, the idea of somebody snooping on you all the time at a micro level is for most of us very offensive. It certainly frightens me, but you can imagine a voluntary total information awareness consortium as a commercial sort of thing."

And much more, go read the whole thing at 3pointD.

[via Raph Koster]

Posted by Gene at September 11, 2006 12:50 PM | TrackBack