"Remember before the internet?" asks Joi Ito. "Remember when people used to try to predict the future?" In this engaging talk, the head of the MIT Media Lab skips the future predictions and instead shares a new approach to creating in the moment: building quickly and improving constantly, without waiting for permission or for proof that you have the right idea. This kind of bottom-up innovation is seen in the most fascinating, futuristic projects emerging today, and it starts, he says, with being open and alert to what's going on around you right now. Don't be a futurist, he suggests: be a now-ist.
MIT Media Lab founder Nicholas Negroponte takes you on a journey through the last 30 years of tech. The consummate predictor highlights interfaces and innovations he foresaw in the 1970s and 1980s that were scoffed at then but are ubiquitous today. And he leaves you with one last (absurd? brilliant?) prediction for the coming 30 years. If you haven't yet, you should read (or re-read) his classic "Being Digital."
In the twentieth century, designers took two distinct approaches to imagining the future of fashion. The first approach tended toward metallic, geometric, quasi-robotic styles: think Pierre Cardin’s space suits of the nineteen-sixties, inspired by the first moon landing. The first generation of high-tech wearables look a lot like what those designers predicted. But the designers of the past had another vision, too, and this one could be a big, untapped market: making clothes better serve their original purpose of keeping people warm, dry, and protected. One designer, in 1939, envisioned that decades in the future women would wear an electric belt that would adapt the body to unpredictable weather changes. It’s an attractive idea for anyone who has sweltered on the subway, then spent the rest of the day shivering in an air-conditioned office. Along those lines, a group of M.I.T. graduates have designed a ninety-five-dollar dress shirt that borrows from NASA’s space suits—not the bulky styles themselves, but the technology in their materials—to store heat away from the wearer when it’s too hot outside, then return it when temperatures cool. It isn’t hard to imagine Apple using its technological prowess to weave computers right into clothes, especially if it draws on the fashion sense of Ahrendts and Paul Deneve, the former chief executive of Yves Saint Laurent, whom Apple hired last summer to focus on special projects.
“I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
For the past few days that quote by Maya Angelou keeps popping up everywhere. In blog posts, TED talks, marketing books, student design work, branding podcasts, everywhere, because it reveals a simple truth, it is all about how you made them feel.
The idea of making isn't just reserved for handmade bikes, artisan pickles, and Arduino helicopters. The future of making is a product of our human needs and the possibilities we create through technology. This is about a larger shift towards making and the unexpected movements that might occur. It's about how everyone from you to your grandma might design, make and consume products or experiences in the next 10 to 15 years. In this SxSW Interactive session Joi Ito, Director of the MIT Media Lab, and Tim Brown, CEO of IDEO, will host a conversation that considers how we might fashion new tools for the future and then how those tools might influence our lives.