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A Course in Almost Here Technologies

A.H.T. is the study of near future technologies.   These are the technologies that will be coming into our present within the next 5 years.  The purpose of the course is analysis of the 'ripple' effects upon social institutions, political institutions, ethics, the sciences, religions and the day to day life of the average person.  This course is designed to help students look into the NEAR future of technological innovations, discover what these will be and then explore the ramifications of these innovations for the professions, for culture and society, for the world and for their own personal lives.

The course is designed to help students develop their analytical skills regarding technology and its ramifications.  Sub-cultures that actually have put in place "technology buffers" to prevent unexamined technological innovations from harming their social health and well being will be researched and discussed.  We will explore the idea that unexamined technological innovations can be dangerous for a society, culture and for the individual.

Students will determine how personal acceptance and utilization of a given technology may transform in positive and negative ways the life of the individual.

What will these 'almost here' technologies do to the way humans interact with each other, the way nations deal with each other, the way individuals practice their various professions?  What economic impact will A.H.T. have upon particular nations and if the impact will be different for different cultures, why will that be so?  How will these near future innovations influence the various religions of the world?  What moral and ethical problems will such 'almost here' technologies create or exasperate?

We will first consider the 'what' of technology on the "what is it" page.  Then we will look into the near future, not with a guessing imaginative mind, but with careful research as to what technologists are right now hoping to deploy within the next 5 to 10 years.  We will consider the most likely of these innovations and deduce why these are probably going to come into our present.  We will discuss and analyze the likely impact these innovations will have on societies, culture and other technologies as well as the arts.

First we will study and analyze how the technological innovations introduced at the St. Louis 1904 World's Fair transformed the world's societies, cultures and understandings of reality.

Second, we will consider how the world wide web is like a contemporary ongoing World's Fair of technologies and how the 'about to happen' technologies are first introduced through the internet to both capture the imagination of the world and then introduce the world to the 'possibilities' the technology holds for the world.

These are some of the likely innovations we will be discussing:

11. How Brains Make Near Future Predictions using fMRI Technology

These are but 101of about 25 technologies we will examine and discuss.  Students will spend the first two weeks of the course researching what A.H.T. are most likely to be 'here' within the next 5 years, choose one of these technologies as a part of a semester long project.  The project will include research into why this technology is being developed and what possible influences it will have upon various aspects of human life.

You are welcome to post your comments on the comments page and any insights you have about what is coming to be in terms of technology are most welcomed.