Future Files

The first time I heard the term ‘futurist’ was last year at Intersections, when Richard Seymour was talking about designers looking at the present to interpret the future. This is an idea that is explored by various authors; William Gibson who said in 1999 “The future is already here – it is just unevenly distributed.” and Neal Stephenson  in his book Snow Crash “The future is encoded in emergent behaviour”

I listened to Richard Watson, author and futurist, via the RSA’s Vision Video Webcasts, which includes many video lectures from inspiring thinkers.

I found it fascinating…see my notes below. Watsons history of the next 50 years gave me lots to think about. Check out his publication Now and Next. He is also the author and publisher of What’s Next and Future Files, Chief Futurist at the Future Exploration Network.

What really got me thinking was the way Watson described human needs. ‘Needs’ is a word designers use often…perhaps to flipantly. Ask yourself what the most important human needs are? Throughout history the answer has never really changed – we need love, recognition, security, repsect and control…