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David Brin
Works at Futurist, Scientist, Author: The Postman, Startide Rising, Earth, Existence
Attended California Institute of Technology
Lives in San Diego
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David Brin

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Reposted online, this podcast originally aired on February 14, 2013. 'Sci-fi author, David Brin, is the final guest in the Mendelspod series, Creating the Future. He says that everyone, that civilization is creating the future. However, he concedes that if you were to compare civilization to a human brain, that "a few of us are the pre-frontal lobes . . . who poke sticks in the sand, in the trail ahead of us that we're charging into so that we can find the quicksand pits . . . before we step right into them."''

http://mendelspod.com/podcast/science-and-the-great-delusion-with-david-brin-sci-fi-author/

Some of the topics in this wide-ranging podcast:
0:47 Who's doing the heavy lifting of creating the future?
8:13 Imagination the great tragedy and boon of human nature
11:24 Science one of the four great pillars that freed us from the "Great Delusion"
15:35 When did you go from astronomer to writer?
24:23 Where are we going in the life sciences?
27:13 A contrarian on immortality
33:00 Renunciationism, stopping the forward rush of science
37:46 "The American Revolution stuns me."
40:55 BONUS: The author reads from Existence

Quoth the Mendelspod folks: “Brin is an actor as well as writer and scientist. You're bound to be captivated by his command of science, history, politics, and by his entertaining wit.”'

There... that oughta hold ya, till the Monday Circus...
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David Brin

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Almost any ambient radio system – like WiFi – will be able to eavesdrop and track your movements and much more. “By measuring subtle changes in breathing and heart rhythms, EQ-Radio is 87 percent accurate at detecting if a person is excited, happy, angry or sad — and can do so without on-body sensors… Using wireless signals reflected off people’s bodies, the device measures heartbeats as accurately as an ECG monitor, with a margin of error of approximately 0.3 percent.”

This does not have to mean an end to privacy or freedom. It does mean that the earnest, well-meaning prescriptions offered by most civil liberties paladins – to yell “stop, looking at us, Big Brother!” – are pathetically futile. I have to wonder when they (any of them) will wake up to the fact that cowering and hiding simply will not and cannot work. It never ever has.

One thing has worked. It is responsible for what freedom we do have! And it is being played out, right now, on our streets. It is the one and only thing that can work tomorrow. And it is the one thing that all the privacy mavens, liberty activists and security “experts” absolutely refuse to allow into their minds.

It is happening despite them. The solution is unfolding, as it had to, and as I predicted, 20 years ago. The street is making use of technology to look back at power. Bravely, assertively insisting on transparency for those with power. Alas, the “leaders” among the anti-orwellians will – apparently – be the last to realize any of this -- that you do not fight Big Brother by hiding from him.

You stop him from oppressing you by getting in his face.
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+Mike Boaz  somebody gets it. Are you from the future? Did you take the "Limitless" pill?
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A very interesting interview with Professor Allan Lichtman, who has correctly predicted every presidential election since 1984. His "13 keys" approach does not refer to polls or demographics... and three of them could shift by election day. Especially is ISIS collapses. Still, an interesting cautionary for you complacent folks out there.

Mind you, as Ted Cruz just showed, the GOP establishment is NOT swinging to Gary Johnson, after all. It would destroy the party for the sane republicans out there to realize they have a better home to flee to. No, Ryan and his Bushite circle want Trump to win... so they can find some excuse quickly to egg the democrats to lead an impeachment of DT, installing their puppet, Mike Pence.

Think. It is the best of all worlds for them. The enraged Trumpists would blame the dems while the Bushites gather all the marbles and begin another era of mass thievery.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/09/23/trump-is-headed-for-a-win-says-professor-whos-predicted-30-years-of-presidential-outcomes-correctly/
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+David Brin Although Litchman does express some caveat, his beaming expression displays a high level of satisfaction in applying these 13 "rules". In spite of admitting that this race is deeply different. Surely anticipating all the clicks and buzz it will generate - he is right on this anticipation ...

These "rules" may be grossly compared with those of bridge, where a correct application of bidding rules maximizes winning expectation, over the long run, without guaranteeing it in any particular run. In bridge, however, there is a grounded assurance of long term statistical coherence (fairness) of card distributions. Of course, none of this here, where chaotic dynamics reign supreme.

Such support from historical past is not a test for predictivity, but only just provides an indication positive of correlation. Correlation is not prediction. These Litchman's rules may be fun to discuss but highly questionable in view of the highly unsusual aspects of the present race.

I'd rather stick with Nate Silver.

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David Brin

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Why has President Obama’s White House been so scandal-free? Like Sherlock Holmes's "dog that failed to bark in the night," that lack of scandal is important, not least because it offers some clues to how the next White House can do the same. Five policies and practices seem to have led the way.

http://www.newsweek.com/how-keep-white-house-scandal-free-2017-498543

The author makes powerful points. But he leaves out a bigger picture. In fact, GWBush assigned scores of FBI etc to dig for "smoking guns" to send to jail "the most corrupt" clintonite politicians.  What did the most extensive witch hunt in US history accomplish?
(1) agents distracted from counter terror before 9/11... in other words outright treason, and
(2) ZERO clintonian officials ever indicted for malfeasance of office, a first ever for a two term administration. The first time. Ever.

Especially since a real witch hunt, extending across 24 years, costing upwards toward a billion dollars, diverting public resources and involving Vesuvius-spews of bile from talk-radio hosts across the land, never resulted in a single Clinton era official ever being imprisoned or even indicted for actual crimes having to do with malfeasance in the performance of their official duties. Not one, ever.

To a scientist, this would come as close to disproof by failure to find supporting evidence as one could get.. (Absence of evidence can be evidence of absence, when the search for evidence was so relentless and thorough.) Indeed, the implication -- galling to all of my Republican friends -- is that the Clintonites were not only the most honest governing clade in US history, but in the history of government on Earth.

Now we have a second US administration to go 8 years without a single demonstrably culpable malfeasance of office. (The current House GOP is desperately trying to deny the dems that double record, by attempting to impeach the IRS head for things he never did, ever, even remotely-at-all.) Only in the case of the Obama Administration, it’s not just the second to have no malfeasance indictments, but the first to have gone essentially scandal free.

Oh… you ravers who raise “scandals” of an utterly picayune nature? How about you first put up money that I can’t respond with things done by the Bushes that were LITERALLY orders of magnitude worse? Two orders? Three? Four? Offer up real cash.
Why has President Obama’s White House been so scandal-free?
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48 comments
 
+Rob Kuntz You add to the likelihood that she might have underestimated the stupidity of Trump supporters.
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David Brin

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So Oxford has (briefly) unseated my alma mater Caltech as the 'best university on Earth"? Congrats, ya poms. Enjoy it while it lasts.

http://www.newsweek.com/oxford-becomes-first-uk-university-top-global-league-501485
Academics say the U.K.'s vote to leave the EU is still a big threat to the sector.
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And more than 40% of UK cancer research is funded by the EU.
If that stops do we really think the Nasty Party will replace the funding or will researchers go to EU universities.
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David Brin

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The 2017 Clarion Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers' Workshop will be held June 25 - August 5, 2017 on the campus of UC San Diego. 2017 Clarion instructors will be Nalo Hopkinson, Cory Doctorow, Dan Chaon, Lynda Barry, Andrea Hairston, C.C. Finlay, & Rae Carson. See bios at the Clarion site www.clarion.ucsd.edu.

Established in 1968, the Clarion Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers' Workshop is the oldest workshop of its kind and is widely recognized as a premier proving and training ground for aspiring writers of fantasy and science fiction.

The list of distinguished Clarion alumni includes Ed Bryant, Octavia Butler, Bob Crais, Cory Doctorow, George Alec Effinger, Nalo Hopkinson, James Patrick Kelly, Vonda McIntyre, Kim Stanley Robinson, Martha Soukup, Kelly Link, Bruce Sterling, and many others.

http://clarion.ucsd.edu/workshop.html
2017 Workshop. DATES Workshop June 25 - August 5. Application Period December 1, 2016 - March 1, 2017 (11:59pm Pacific) Notification of Acceptance December 2016 - March 2017. Tuition and Housing Fees Due Two weeks after acceptance. Scholarships Awarded March - April (read more)
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David Brin

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Taking a much needed breather from politics before the debates... here's my weekend posting. 2nd in a row about Science and science fiction! Book reviews and fascinating podcasts. Can AI be ethical? And a recent popular flick that's plain slander. What fun!

http://davidbrin.blogspot.com/2016/09/at-intersection-of-science-fiction-and.html
Dig it... two sci-tech postings in a row! Because despite the ravings of media and politicians, they are no what's taking this spectacular civilization forward. Some of them hamper and some help, but the real action is out am...
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David Brin

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A century tradition, overcome. Because the nation is not now conservative vs liberal or Left vs. Right. It is sane vs completely jibbering whacko. The Cincinnati Enquirer editorial board is made up of smart men and women who want their children and nation to survive.

Clinton, meanwhile, was a competent secretary of state, with far stronger diplomatic skills than she gets credit for. Yes, mistakes were made in Benghazi, and it was tragic that four Americans lost their lives in the 2012 terror attacks on the US consulate there," it wrote. "But the incident was never the diabolical conspiracy that Republicans wanted us to believe, and Clinton was absolved of blame after lengthy investigations."

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump is more interested in his self that the country, the paper concludes.

"Trump brands himself as an outsider untainted by special interests, but we see a man utterly corrupted by self-interest. His narcissistic bid for the presidency is more about making himself great than America," the board said. "Trump tears our country and many of its people down with his words so that he can build himself up. What else are we left to believe about a man who tells the American public that he alone can fix what ails us?"

http://www.cnn.com/2016/09/23/politics/cincinnati-enquirer-hillary-clinton-endorsement/
The Cincinnati Enquirer, one of Ohio's largest newspapers, is backing Hillary Clinton after supporting Republican presidential candidates for nearly a century.
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59 comments
 
+Thomas Conlon ISIS, Putin and Mugabe have all endorsed Trump as has Izvestia.
Much of Trump's money is coming from Moscow and much of the vile allegations about Clinton have been coming from Newt Gingrich's people for years.
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David Brin

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If, as expected, the Iraqis launch their autumn offensive to retake Mosul, it will put up to a million people in jeopardy of being used as human shields by the tottering ISIS-Daesh. And while some are predicting a rapid collapse of Islamic State forces, they have built a formidable array of trenches, berms and walls, in depth around the city, not just to repel government forces but in order to prevent floods of refugees fleeing the city.

Although the US military has limited its involvement to air support and advice from special forces., there is one more thing we could do:* call up the 82nd Airborne Division for a full-deployment "exercise"* -- one that includes regiment level movements to (with Turkish approval) Incirlik and to Jordan.

Go ahead and deny that it is anything more than that. But spread rumors that it is aimed at seizing the center of Mosul -- NOT to assist attacking Iraqi forces, but in order to fortify that core zone as a refuge for the civilian population.

We don't have to actually do it. (Though on paper it sounds way-cool.) Just the possibility of such a move would seriously disrupt Daesh planning, forcing them to divert forces from the perimeter and undermining morale.

Oh, am I now PART of that disinformation campaign? Uh, right. That's the ticket. Sure. For the record? Not. I am just making an observation of 'obvious' potential way to mess with the heads of monsters.

http://www.foxnews.com/world/2016/09/23/isis-digging-trenches-preparing-for-hell-on-earth-in-mosul-us-military-says.html
Islamic State fighters in Mosul are digging trenches and can be seen pouring oil in some of them to bolster their defensive positions in Iraq’s second largest city ahead of an expected U.S.-backed Iraqi ground assault on the city, the U.S. military said Friday.
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9 comments
 
Why is it that ISIS are endorsing Trump?
What do they believe he'll do to help them?
And why is Putin endorsing Trump?
Ditto Mugabe?
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David Brin

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Trump’s revised tax plan makes the tax code less progressive, giving most benefits to the rich . (Rejoice republicans: he’s now ‘mainstream’ GOP!) The right-leaning Tax Foundation released an analysis. Trump's campaign would shrink federal revenues by as much as $5.9 trillion over 10 years. http://www.npr.org/2016/09/19/494580145/analysis-trump-tax-plan-would-cost-trillions-boost-incomes-for-the-rich

His promise - the same old Supply Side incantation of 30 years - is that the rich would invest then in productive factories and the resulting economic activity - taxed at lower rates - would erase deficits. Only that never happened. Ever. Even once in 30 years of promises. Ever. At all.

Even the Tax Foundation does not swallow it anymore, saying Trump’s plan will send debt skyrocketing.
The plan would also help the rich more than the middle class, according to the Tax Foundation. And there's still one huge, $1.5 trillion uncertainty in the plan.
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74 comments
 
+Josephine Sharp I know it seems odd when you look at it from where you are but we just had the best President in modern times (President Obama) and we spent 8 years trashing him.

I can't explain the place we are in as a nation.
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David Brin

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Midweek posting - a potpourri of weird and interesting and even some amazing bits from the Frontiers of Tech & Science!

http://davidbrin.blogspot.com/2016/09/tech-advances-and-really-interesting.html
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Of course DT has his reasons. Hiding stuff? Sure. But also to keep attention focused on himself. "Every major presidential candidate going back 40 years has released his or her tax returns – except for Donald Trump."

http://www.wiscnews.com/baraboonewsrepublic/opinion/editorial/article_5479ebd7-82ff-53a0-8464-92761b2d9334.html
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The news is scary poor at informing the populace.  The problem is that they see their first job as returning shareholder value, and I don't know how far down the list informing the populace is - if it's on the list any more.
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David's Collections
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Futurist, Science Fiction Author, Scientist. Advocate for a Transparent Society.
Introduction

Scientist, Author, Futurist, Public speaker: David Brin’s novels have been translated into more than twenty languages, including NY Times Best-sellers that have won Hugo and Nebula awards. His latest, Existence, looks at the threats facing us forty years in the future. His 1989 thriller, Earth, foreshadowed cyber-warfare, the Web, and global warming. A 1998 Kevin Costner film was loosely adapted from the post-apocalyptic novel, The Postman. The Uplift novels, including Startide Rising, and The Uplift War consider a future where humans raise animals to sentient levels. Foundation's Triumph brought a grand finale to Isaac Asimov's famed Foundation Universe. 

Brin is also a scientist and futurist who appears frequently on television ("Life After People," "The Universe," "the Architechs") discussing topics as diverse as surveillance technology, astronomy, SETI, nanotechnology and national defense. His non-fiction book -- The Transparent Society: Will Technology Make Us Choose Between Freedom and Privacy? -- won the 2000 Freedom of Speech Award of the American Library Association

Bragging rights
Hugo, Nebula award winner
Education
  • California Institute of Technology
    Physics, 1969 - 1973
  • University of California, San Diego
    Space Physics, 1975 - 1981
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Gender
Male
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http://davidbrin.blogspot.com/
Work
Occupation
Author, scientist, futurist, public speaker
Employment
  • Futurist, Scientist, Author: The Postman, Startide Rising, Earth, Existence
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San Diego
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Southern California - London, Paris
David Brin's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
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