Archive for the Uncategorized Category

SXSW Proposal

I love speaking at SXSW. It’s a firehose of presentations and conversations that frankly, I find awesome. Following the usual protocol, I submitted my 2022 proposal and now it’s down to your votes! Please take a look at my presentation “Neureality: The Building of Our 21st Century Minds and cast a vote. It’s going to be an amazing conversation!”

Parsons School of Design Guest Lecture

I recently had the pleasure of giving a guest lecture at Parsons School of Design. My presentation, “Designing for a Differently Intelligent Future” is drawn from parts of my latest book, Future Minds. It was a lot of fun and as always, I think I enjoyed the Q&A the most. A big thank you to friend and trend analyst Tim Stock for inviting me to speak with his class. Let’s do it again!

Future Minds Book Launch

It was almost exactly half a year ago that the official book launch for Future Minds at Town Hall Seattle was postponed. We expected to have a packed house, but I cancelled it two weeks earlier as it became apparent that any sort of large gathering would be irresponsible given the impending pandemic. Six months later, it was finally time to return to THS, albeit virtually, for the “official” launch party! A huge thank you to Wier Harman, Shane Unger and everyone at Town Hall Seattle, as well as the evening’s official bookseller, Third Place Books.

Amazon Alexa Prize Finals – Team Emora Wins

Congratulations Team Emora! Amazon announced today that Emory University and their Emora socialbot are the winners of the 2020 Alexa Prize. Second Place was awarded to Stanford’s Chirpy Cardinal bot and Third Place was Alquist developed by the team from Czech Technical University.

Emory won with a 3.81 average rating (out of a possible 5.0), earning them the $500,000 top prize. Each of the past two years’ winners have exceeded the average rating of the previous year’s winner. The eventual goal of the competition is to achieve a 4.0 rating while conversing with a human interactor for a minimum of twenty minutes.

It’s been an honor to be a part of this innovative competition – my third year as an Amazon #AlexaPrize finalist judge. I look forward to seeing what next year’s competition brings and what all of the competitors do with their amazing talent in the future!

Future Minds – Emerging Intelligence Interview

Not surprisingly, the book launch of Future Minds at Town Hall Seattle had to be postponed, a decision I wholeheartedly support in the interest of public safety. But in lieu of that presentation (at least for now), the good folks at THS did an interview with me to offer a taste of what my book and presentation are about. You can read my interview in their blog, the Town Crier. Find out why our world is rapidly becoming more and differently intelligent and what this could mean for the future!

Fifty Years of Future Shock

Futurist Richard Yonck in After Shock

Fifty years ago, I had the life changing experience of being introduced to Future Shock, Alvin and Heidi Toffler’s pivotal 1970 book. Putting forth the premise that too much change was happening in too short a time, Future Shock explored the psychological and societal impacts of continuous and disruptive progress. It was a view I’d never been exposed to and it made quite an impact on my then-preteen mind.

Which is just one of the reasons why the publication of After Shock: The World’s Foremost Futurists Reflect on 50 Years of Future Shock—and Look Ahead to the Next 50 is so exciting to me. Not only do I get to revisit the Tofflers’ original ideas, but to also gain insights into the many influences it had on futurists all over the world, including many of my friends and colleagues. That I was invited to write one of the chapters is icing on the cake! I hope you enjoy this insightful collection of essays.