I noticed New Scientist has asked many eminent people to make some far fetched predictions about the next 50 years. Can’t say they are that illuminating in general (they are also very short) but at least I can agree with Gregory Chaitin:
“I hope that by 2056 weird astronomical observations will lead to radical new fundamental physics. I expect people will be tampering with the human genome, which should be fun. In my own field, I hope the current desiccated, formal approach has died out and people are more adventurous and creative.”
Yes, I think tampering with human genome to produce better sex kittens should be fun (let’s make them more beautiful, more willing with some novel features that make having sex with them more delightful… and let’s have me test driving them). I’m sure if foolish westerners won’tÂtryÂitÂatÂleast someÂrichÂSheikhÂwillÂdoÂitÂinÂtheÂMiddle-EastÂorÂsomeplace – if Chinese or Japanese won’t beat everyone in that respect. ThoughÂofÂcourseÂIÂseeÂlotsÂofÂotherÂgood uses for genetic tampering.
Also, I agree with Greg on that more empirical approach to mathematics could be more fruitful. UsingÂempirical simulations to explore the space of possibilities should also be a lot cooler if you could have a computer that is something like 8000000000 times more powerful than the one I’m using now; hopefully Moore’s Law will make that possible in the next 50 years. Theoretical math is for pussycats – real men do it using simulations.