This issue is named after a great article in this post called "It's Not Climate Change - It's Everything Change". It's true. We can talk about the end of the world all the way to the irradiated, oil-spill, global-warming-3-feet-higher beach, but it's not just climate change. Or just automated weapons. Or just bioengineering science. Or just... it's everything. Give it 20 years and everything will be different.
How different? I can't say. The only thing that'll keep us from moving "forward" - or at least, in some strange, wild, direction - is our own reticence and fear of what the future could bring. We have good reasons for that fear. Change is scary, and even the rate of change is changing. But let's not think about that - let's just stare into the future together.
These Superhumans Are Real and Their DNA Could Be Worth Billions
There are two "superhumans" that science has set its sights on - one is insensitive to pain, and the other has insane bone density such that he could walk away from car accidents that would break other people into heaps. Companies are trying to mine their DNA to reap the genetic rewards. Have you ever noticed that drug companies always have ominous, futuristic, evil-sounding names like in science fiction? "Amgen", "Genentech", "Regeneron"...
a swing and a near miss
The Long, Strange Trip to Pluto, and How NASA Nearly Missed It
Nobody has great stories like astronauts (and the engineers helping them) have stories. Worth a read.
It's Not Climate Change - It's Everything Change
A beautiful, future-looking thoughtpiece with tons of fantastic imagery on what the impending future could be. From oil disasters to dystopian rebellions to alternative future tech, this is an excellent read.
A well-designed turret can easily outmatch any sort of human aiming with near-perfect accuracy and fast speed. A potential automated weapon could be simply an automatic weapon mounted to a handheld turret that someone holds - point and it shoots for you. We saw "smart rifles" in issue 0.4 that fire once they identify a target - add some simplistic motion and figure recognition and servos and you've got an extraordinarily deadly weapon. We absolutely should have strong restrictions on automated weapons, if not banning them altogether.
... but then, how much would that actually help? Counterpoint below.
ai + guns = inevitable
We Should Not Ban 'Killer Robots,' and Here's Why
The author's argument is this: DIY weapons are becoming so easy to create that it's next to impossible to regulate willful criminals from making or using them. Instead, we should focus on learning more about the technology and ways to install safeguards into it.
OK, I tried to come up with a catchy title for this one but I couldn't. Everything here is cool, though. Also check out this wild datamosh gif - it's too big to embed in the newsletter. Source on reddit.
get you to the glitch
Breaking Things on Purpose
A lovely artist profile of Sabato Visconti and exploration of glitch art with tons of large, beautiful images.
Badass Inc. - free in-browser cyberpunk game
All those words are great words - free, in-browser, cyberpunk, game. Need I say more?
learn you machine learning
A Visual Introduction to Machine Learning
A beautifully visual, well-conceived interactive article showing you the fundamentals of machine learning. Check it out.