1. Hubardo
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    Hubardo Contributing Member Contributor

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    Researching the future to write it

    Discussion in 'Research' started by Hubardo, Aug 2, 2015.

    This morning I was writing, and what happens when I write is random words just come out. Blah blah blah, this thing has been happening since 2036. Okay, I chose 2036. What will 2036 be like? Climate change is an enormous theme so I'm going to be looking at IPCC reports for research into what things might be like climate wise. What else might it be like in terms of:

    -Technological advancements
    -Transmigration patterns
    -Geopolitics
    -Environmental destruction/conservation
    -Culture change from globalization (negative and positive)

    What are other things to consider that might be different? What will be the same?

    What resources would you recommend for researching the future (beyond using the imagination)?
     
  2. OurJud
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    OurJud Contributing Member Contributor

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    The economy (will it still be the Dollar, Pound, Euro etc?)
    Big Brother development
    Fashion (seems to go round in circles, so I suspect little change by your chosen year)

    Other than those I'd say you have it covered, unless your novel is going to go into ridiculous detail.
     
  3. AgentBen
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    AgentBen Member

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    One thing that has popped into my head is to look a the scientific projects and construction sites going on around the world. There is a lot of stuff that is being 'completed by 2030' like a super high speed train if I remember correctly. If you are setting this in London, look at the picture that went circulating around a few months back about London in 2020.

    That was to answer you last question.

    As for what will be the same? Poor countries. I learned in Geog that we actually need poor countries.

    What is your book going to be about? I could probably get more specific.
     
  4. Daemon Wolf
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    Daemon Wolf Active Member

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    Is climate change the theme of your book? If not I wouldn't really focus on it at all. I mean 20-30 years ago we were worried about Global Cooling. Who knows what the next 20-30 years will bring with the climate.

    As for other things. You may want to look at what new technologies that are currently being developed. Ex: Sentient Robots, there is a debate on whether creating sentient weapons would be a good idea or not currently. A company (I think two if I am correct) is planning to begin the colonization of Mars. We are developing phones that just reflect off your hand and use your hand (or even your arm) as a screen. Advancements are made everyday with fake limbs and the like. If you look at the U.S. we are becoming more sheepish in the way we blindly follow our government (Don't know about the rest of the world).

    Ultimately if things don't go crazy in the next few years (Like in my book I have it so the Human race almost causes their extinction) I would assume we would have people walking around with augmented limbs and having robot servants and robot friends along with phones that use our skin as the screen. Hell we already have holograms so focusing more on those wouldn't be too far off either.
     
  5. Hubardo
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    Hubardo Contributing Member Contributor

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    One of the larger themes of the book, yes. But the idea for it was inspired by this: http://deepgreenresistance.org/en/deep-green-resistance-strategy/decisive-ecological-warfare

    Tell me more!

    That is one of my themes as well, as related to industrial civilization driven climate change. I think it's important to be clear about what kind of human behavior causes this; Amazonian peoples are part of the human race but have not threatened the extinction of anything. What historic and present day forces of "human nature" (or sociocultural patterns based on particular belief systems) might promote human extinction? Are there examples of human settlement patterns and belief systems that do not threaten our survival? Is the future inevitable? Free will vs determinism questions -- always make for good stories.
     
  6. Daemon Wolf
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    Daemon Wolf Active Member

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    http://www.mars-one.com/

    There are four people set to go (Last time I checked).

    And my human extinction event is sudden. I was writing my backstory last year (2014) when the news (In the U.S.) was focused on Russia and everybody was afraid something was going to happen between Russia and the U.S.. So I had the first event in the timeline of my universe to be World War 3. Where (as so many have theorized) we cause a mutually assured destruction by trying to nuke Russia (or them trying to nuke us) which leads to most of the planet being radioactive and what was left of the human race trying to group back up and focus on the betterment of what is left of the Human race.

    Of course that is not my main focus of my book as it happens in 2018 A.D. where as my book takes place in 1381 A.E. (After Extinction)/3404 A.D.
     
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  7. S Raven
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    S Raven Member

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    In the not too distant future, a new religion will be formed that puts the ecology of our precious planet at the forefront of its belief system.
     
  8. Hubardo
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    Hubardo Contributing Member Contributor

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    https://www.goodreads.com/genres/permaculture-philosophy-theology
     
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  9. Hubardo
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    Hubardo Contributing Member Contributor

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    Okay, the best resource of all time (pun):

    http://www.futuretimeline.net/
     
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  10. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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  11. Hubardo
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    Hubardo Contributing Member Contributor

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    If you thought I knew of the phrase "permaculture philosophy theology," I didn't. I thought of a permaculture course I took once, and how spiritual some permie people get, and googled "permaculture theology" and clicked the goodreads link that came up. I just get google-mania sometimes and wanna show off the things it told me.

    News for the year 2033:

    http://www.futuretimeline.net/21stcentury/2033.htm#peak-phosphorous-2033
     
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  12. Hubardo
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    Hubardo Contributing Member Contributor

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    I changed my signature I'm so happy.
     
  13. GingerCoffee
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    :agreed:
     
  14. daemon
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    daemon Contributing Member Contributor

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    We will all be in the matrix.
     
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  15. Sack-a-Doo!
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    Sack-a-Doo! Contributing Member Contributor

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    I've tried a few times to figure out what the future would be like and by the time the 'future' became 'today,' in every single instance, I was wrong.

    The best prediction I've ever been able to make about the future is that technology will be far more advanced in unexpected ways than I could imagine and totally stagnant in other ways.

    Even the experts get it wrong. Take Moore's Law, for instance. It used to state that the speed of processors would double every 18 months. All through the 1980s and '90s, that's what Moore's Law stated.

    Now, since that doubling of speed doesn't happen any longer, it's impossible to find an instance of the original statement of Moore's Law. If you look it up, it's about doubling the number of transistors rather than the speed and the claim now is that this is what he said back in 1965.

    What I've come away with in this case is: If you can't predict the future, rewrite the past. ;)
     
  16. S Raven
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    S Raven Member

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    @Hubardo

    Okay, the best resource of all time (pun):

    http://www.futuretimeline.net/

    Thanks for that. One of the main characters in my novel is a time traveller from the future, I should get some ideas here.
     
  17. Commandante Lemming
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    You've got the basics. Although a lot of groups do studies on where they THINK tech and geopolitics and such are going in the near-future, so you can look for those. But that doesn't mean you have to do everything they say. My setting is in almost the exact same time as yours (my present work is set in 2034 and the planned plot runs all the way until 2039) but I would bet that our 2030s are very, very different futures. In my case I get knocked a lot for lack of tech advancement (granted I do that on purpose - stagnation is a theme - but part of it is just not knowing yet). In my case I do think a lot about tech but I also think a lot about culture change - I've spent less time doing tech stuff than I have building up my youth music subcultures the Brills and the Revs (my future deals with a 2030s that functions as 'The Next 1960s cultural revolution" - so I purposely have a lot of culture loosely based on the late 50s/early 60s. The Brills are my 'hipsters', but they're all into girl groups and chocolate malts and poodle skirts - the Revs are a hip-hop culture influenced heavily by socialist revolution themes a la Che Guevara). And I'm trying to put in a decent amount of "Brill-speak", especially for my younger characters ("Totally malted!")

    The other thing is I've been getting the most bang for my buck on technology by showing the everyday stuff people have to interact with - like the subway trains reading thumbprints instead of farecards, the YardRoomba trimming the hedges (I so want to have a scene where it ends up chasing the dog) - and I have a couple of paragraphs dealing with the underground apartment complexes where everyone buys "artificial window" systems to make it look like they have a window and to scrub and scent the stale air (my characters have a top-of-the-line Apple iWindow in for their "premium subterranean living space" and they have an ongoing fight about whether to use the realistic settings or the fantasy ones - one always pulls up her hometown, the other always pulls up The Shire.) I also created a few restaurants that the characters always interact with - like a Starbucks analogue that sells bubble tea, a fad where everyone is going to Japanese-style izakayas for food and beer, and I think I'm going to have everyone eating Peruvian-style Picarone pastries to make fun of the cupcake boom (I like to make fun of hipsters and fads...a lot).

    Also, repurpose modern tech and culture as memories and nostalgia. If you're in the 2030s, a lot of your characters will remember today, but from different vantage points. In my 2034 - I have a 37 year old character who would theoretically be in high school in 2015. She has a huge collection of vintage, signed Taylor Swift memorabilia that "kids" think is weird (and fwiw - Taylor Swift songs are depressing as heck if you listen to them from the POV of a 37 year-old alcoholic who used to be a superfan). I have a 23 year old character who would be a toddler right now...she still has her beat-up old Elsa doll from the movie 'Frozen'. I have another character who is 20 - her old toys are all from the (yet to be finished) "Jurassic World Trilogy". So I do a LOT of that. I also mix up the good neighborhoods and bad neighborhoods in my city - the bad ones have gentrified, the good ones have become ghettos...granted that's only funny if you live in my city, but they're fun easter eggs and they give me an excuse to poke fun at modern culture (I have a really sketchy bodega in a building that clearly used to be a Starbucks).
     
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  18. Kingtype
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    Kingtype Always writing or thinking things XD Staff Role Play Moderator Contributor

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    Damn.

    Well the climate change sucks but holy crap there is a lot of other cool stuff going on in that speculative timeline, oh man did you read the 2500 part? I mean yeah we will all be dead by then but did I read right?

    The body modifications for superpowers.

    I'd finally have excuse to wear that cape I own.

    God, I hope we get there someday or something similar because that would be totally radical.
     
  19. Hubardo
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    Hubardo Contributing Member Contributor

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    Yeah the post-biological "humans" phase is interesting, but it's all still premised in a pro-imperialism, pro-colonialism, and sorta kinda pro- extremely stratified global society perspective. Plus, my heart still sinks thinking about the human culture and biodiversity loss.

    We tend to assume we will be able to materially support advancements of that kind. I'm not saying we won't, but it is possible that we will run out of the minerals to build our staircase to post-biological transhumanism or whatever. What if we run out on earth and that mining the moon, asteroids and other planets is just technically or economically unfeasible?

    ETA: Plus the issues inherent from our reliance on pesticides and GMOs. Bugs and viruses will eventually catch up to us, wiping out enormous patches of food staples. Maybe it's on the timeline - haven't checked for it yet. Reading Windup Girl is getting me in that mindset :)
     
  20. Hubardo
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    Hubardo Contributing Member Contributor

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    Ooh, what about diet trends? Will the term gluten still be in existence? What about carbs?
     
  21. Kingtype
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    Kingtype Always writing or thinking things XD Staff Role Play Moderator Contributor

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    Well then that would suck but I'm rather confident we shall get to that stage and if not then at least we had fun of trying. Now to don't get me wrong though, like I said I've got hope that we will see ourselves to a pretty awesome future.

    Yes.

    A lot of scary stuff going on and it is going to be a lot of rough times ahead but ya know? I look back at our ancestors or even our mothers and fathers what they had to deal with. Stuff like world wars, nuclear threat paranoia and even before that so many horrible things.

    What we are dealing with is of course far different but we aren't the first to feel like our world was coming down around us or it was in danger. I don't know or well I can't obviously fully predict what would happen that far into the future, we have a lot of things to fix, discover, manage, learn and overcome before we can get there and I think we can do it.

    Hope so.

    I'm with you on the loss of human culture and biodiversity.

    That would be awful but that's why you should enjoy it now while we have it as it is. Our culture will change and we will get new (somehow)biodiversity or we won't but hopefully we will but no matter what happens.....heck even if we didn't damaged the planet.

    Things change.

    Will always change.

    Sometimes I wish I could see the future or even the past and maybe live there and see it but I can't and I think we should be proud of living when we do but I'm rambling and sorry this was long but I'm proud I'm able to see what I am.

    Nobody likes change at all but there can always be a real beauty to it and if that change helps the planet, helps people, helps animals and we are able to reach our full potential then....that was a pretty well worth change at the end, if we can make it. :)

    Plus just in general a super future like that would just be majorly radically wicked cool duuuuuuuude.

    Plus who knows what kinda animals or plant life might be out on other planets maybe.
     
  22. Kingtype
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    Kingtype Always writing or thinking things XD Staff Role Play Moderator Contributor

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    Though

    I'm sure super future would at least have history lessons on the past as we live it now or at least I'd assume so.

    So our culture as we know it now might not just fully vanish.
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2015
  23. Hubardo
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    Hubardo Contributing Member Contributor

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    Haha, sure. Very cool, but from our own cultural context. For us, sitting at computers and reading books, removed from the natural environment, that's one thing. But there are people on this planet who are already stoked about the plants and animals in their forests, mountains, deserts, tundras, plains. For them to have to die off like endangered species so that we can go "oh cool! new stuff! gimme the popcorn!" fills me with lots of emotion. If you have 20 minutes to spare, this video will fill you with those emotions too:

     
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  24. Kingtype
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    Kingtype Always writing or thinking things XD Staff Role Play Moderator Contributor

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    What a wonderful video :)

    You are correct in those are an incredible people.

    But I know how you feel and well I don't have an answer for it at all those are beautiful people and in a way its even better that they aren't bogged down by our computers and books. Sorry if it seemed like I didn't care about those types of people.

    It is always important to view things outside of your cultural and to try and relate to those who grew up different, one of the most important things.

    But yes it is a real heartbreak, thinking about what would happen to them and it certainly is an uncomfortable thought to think about......sad.....not good.

    I think at the end both of what we want are both noble options.

    It is a very noble and heartfelt to want keep those types of places preserved and its amazing that the people who live there are so connected with nature but on my side I also think its fair to want the betterment of all of humanity from what we can cure, discover and accomplish.

    It certainly is a very difficult thing.

    I suppose the perfect world is one where we can advance to a degree of comfortable of living with gadgets, science and of course medicine to cure things while also respecting the types of people in that video and the nature around them.

    Where we can all do our thing.

    Thank you for the video, got a little ahead of myself for a moment (easy to forget such things sometimes) but I still say I'd like to see us advance and learn, this is certainly a hard issue......hmmm this is rather interesting.

    I'm eager to see where we end up.

    But till then.

    This convo or something similar will probably end up in something we write at some point :write: which is in itself pretty darn exciting to.
     
  25. Hubardo
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    Hubardo Contributing Member Contributor

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    The assumption there is around "betterment" though. :p Imperialists and colonizers have always framed the enslavement, displacement and cultural annihilation of indigenous peoples as that. I know you're not saying that but if we're telling stories we may as well examine some of those cultural and value-based premises to see which ones we're choosing to illuminate, espouse, critique in our narratives. :)

    ETA I wonder if the debate room would be interested in a discussion about this...
     

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