• Panel videos

    Watch all four keynote panels

  • 2017 Foresight Vision Weekend

    December 2-3, Gray Area & The Laundry, SF

    Video of our 2016 annual gathering

     

    Reflections by past attendees
    "A milestone in our journey to better understand our future"

    Robin Hanson

    "It was a unique and exhilarating experience to actually be with a large group of people who have sophisticated, enlightened, and thoughtful ideas about the future"

    Ray Kurzweil

    "Had a great time and was exposed to fascinating ideas, and, more importantly, fascinating sources of ideas"

    Vernor Vinge

  • Program

    A member-gathering dedicated to taking stock of the most compelling ideas of today, turn them into coherent visions for a better future and get to work on them.

    Curious what to expect? Click here to listen to a sneak peek of the program.

     

    Saturday, Dec 2: Keynote Panels at Gray Area, SF 

    2665 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94110

    9 am - 8 pm: Industry-leaders deliver food for thought followed by Q&A circles with your favorite speaker. Aftershow-party.

     

    Sunday, Dec 3: Strategy Sessions at The Laundry, SF

    3359 26th St, San Francisco, CA 94110​

    10 am - 6 pm: Sessions to focus on topics of high-importance. Applications are now closed - there will be a sign-up sheet at the event.

     

    Foresight Senior Associates members only. You may sign up for membership during registration.

    *We're glad that we're able to offer income support on a small number of tickets by waiving the required Foresight membership fee: Apply here *

     

    Lodging: Please contact conference@foresight.org for assistance with finding lodging.

    Keynote Talks

     

    9 AM: Registration

     

    10 AM: Existential Hope

    Allison Duettmann

     

    10.30: Longevity - Reaching Escape Velocity

    Sonia Arrison, Aubrey De Grey, Max More, Kevin Perrott compare strategies to extend human healthspans

    - Snake oil vs the holy grail - cryonics - overpopulation vs stabilization -

     

     

    NOON: Blockchains - Master Key To Unlock The Future?

    Zooko Wilcox, Nathana Sharma, Mark Miller, Nick Kritikos on how to build better base realities block by block

    - Beyond crypto - ICO hype & hope - decentralized governance -

     

     

    1.30 PM: Lunch on your own

     

     

    2.30 PM: Intelligence 2.0 - The Brain, AI, and Hybrids

    David Eagleman, Robert McIntyre, Randal Koene, Nell Watson on brains, other computers, and the intersection between them

    - State of the art - self-directed evolution - AI safety -

     

     

    4 PM: The Long-Term - So Much To Do, So Little Time  

    Joon Yun, Thomas Kalil, Melanie Swan, Matt Bell discuss the toolkit to make it through the century and beyond

    - X-Risks and X-Hope - prioritization - meta-tools -

     

    6 PM: Bar opens

     

    8 PM: Assemble your group for dinner

     

    Strategy Sessions

     
    10 AM: Arrive
     
    10.30: Strategy Session Orientation
     
    11-12 PM: Strategy Sessions Round 1
    Lunar Colonies Against X-Risks
    Will Marshall, Planet
    Cybersecurity As Catastrophic Risk

    Mark Miller, Foresight Institute

    Blockchain Economics

    Melanie Swan, Institute for Blockchain Studies
    The State of Human Cognitive Enhancement
    Eric Matzner, Nootroo
     
    12 PM: Summary of Round 1
    12.30 PM: Lunch on your own
     
    1.30 PM: Strategy Sessions Round 2
    Increasing Your Functional Longevity
    Joon Yun, Palo Alto Longevity Prize, Elissa Epel, UCSF, Wendy Mendes, UCSF
    The First Floating Seasteads By 2020
    Joe Quirk, Blue Frontiers
    Artificial Intelligence: Timelines & Policy
    Christine Peterson, Foresight Institute
    AI & The Future Of Work
    Samuel Hammond, Niskanen Center
     
    2.30 PM: Summary of Round 2
    3.00 PM: Break
     
    3.30 PM: Strategy Sessions Round 3
    Why Cryonics Makes Sense
    Max More, Alcor
    Artificial General Intelligence: Hype & Hope
    Peter Voss, AGI Innovations
    The Cryptocurrency Landscape
    Kevin Fischer, Cryptolotus
    Robocars
    Brad Templeton, Foresight Institute
     
    4.30 PM: Summary of Round 4
    5 PM: Closing & Mingling
  • Speaker Visions

    Updated frequently - for more detailed speaker profiles see slider below

    Sonia Arrison

    Unsugarcoat Media,

    Thiel Foundation

    "Scientific advances that allow for the true repair of human bodies will usher in a cultural revolution more significant than any other before."

    Aubrey De Grey

    SENS Research Foundation

    "In 2030 we will have reached escape velocity for longevity, looking back melancholically but pitiful at the time when aging was a fatal disease."

    Mark S. Miller

    Foresight Institute

    "If we do not change direction, computer insecurity will drive civilization over a cliff. If we do reduce the risks of cooperation, we will get a more cooperative world."

    Max More

    Alcor

    "In 50 to 100 years we'll say “What were people thinking? People who were nearly viable, barely dysfunctional, were put in an oven or buried under the ground, when they could have been put into cryopreservation."

    Will Marshall

    Planet Labs

    "Tech used in a wise way. Self sustainable settlement on the moon."

    Joon Yun

    Palo Alto Investors,

    Palo Alto Longevity Prize

    "The next black swan is global depopulation. Before too long we may not be making enough people."

    Tom Kalil

    Eric & Wendy Schmidt Group, UC Berkeley

    "How do we more systematically identify and pursue ambitious but achievable goals that become positive, self-fulfilling prophecies?"

    Kevin Perrott

    The Buck Institute

    "Befriending Aging is like Stockholm Syndrome."

    David Eagleman

    The Brain with David Eeagleman, Neosensory

    Matt Bell

    Matterport

    Melanie Swan

    Institute for Blockchain Studies

    "Intelligence (machine and formerly human biological) running on idea-tokened smart networks."

    Zooko Wilcox

    ZCash

    Randal Koene

    Kernel

    Nathana Sharma

    SIngularity University

    "Artificial intelligence advancements converging with blockchain technology will usher in a new era of network global governance by autonomous agents."

    Joe Quirk

    Blue Frontiers

    "21st-century technology needs-21st century governance on startup nano-nations-- immediately!"

    Peter Voss

    AGI Innovations

    "AGI will help us address so many of our challenges—aging, disease, poverty, etc—that looking back we’ll wonder why we were to slow to develop it."

    Robert McIntyre

    Nectome

    Nick Kritikos

    Consensys

  • Joon Yun, MD

    Dr. Joon Yun is managing partner and president of Palo Alto Investors, LLC, an investment management firm founded in 1989 with $1.8 billion in assets invested in healthcare. Board certified in Radiology, Joon served on the clinical faculty at Stanford from 2000-2006. He received his B.A. from Harvard, M.D. from Duke Medical School, and clinical training at Stanford. Joon has served on several corporate and non-profit ​boards, and has published dozens of patents, scientific articles, and business essays. He is a contributor to ​Forbes, and is the health editor for Evolution magazine. Joon recently agreed to donate a $1million Palo Alto Prize to reverse the aging process.

    Elissa Epel, Ph.D.

    Elissa Epel, Ph.D, is a Professor in the Department of Psychiatry, at University of California, San Francisco. Her research aims to elucidate mechanisms of healthy aging, and to apply this basic science to scalable interventions that can reach vulnerable populations. She is the Director of the Aging, Metabolism, and Emotions Lab, and the Center for Obesity Assessment, Study, & Treatment, (COAST), and Associate Director of the Center for Health and Community. She studies psychological, social, and behavioral pathways underlying chronic psychological stress and stress resilience that impact cellular aging. Her research has been featured in venues such as TEDMED, NBC’s Today Show, and the New York Times. Epel has received several awards including the APA Early Career Award and the Academy of Behavioral Medicine Research Neal Miller Young Investigator Award. She was named Innovator of the Year by McLaughlin group and received the 2017 Silver Innovator Award from the Alliance for Aging Research. She co-authored "The Telomere Effect" (2017) with Elizabeth Blackburn, a NYT bestseller under the category of Science.

    Wendy Mendes, Ph.D

    Dr. Mendes is the Sarlo/Ekman Professor of Emotion at UC San Francisco. Her research questions sit at the intersection of social, personality, and biological psychology and primarily concerns questions regarding embodiment: how emotions, thoughts, and intentions are experienced in the body and how bodily responses shape and influence thoughts, behaviors, and emotions. Some current research areas include coping with stigma and discrimination, dyadic intergroup interactions, affect contagion, mind-body relations across the life course, influence of emotional labeling on emotional experience and effects of stress on decision-making.

    Melanie Swan

    Melanie Swan is a Philosopher and Economic Theorist at the New School for Social Research in New York, NY. She is the founder of several startups including the Institute for Blockchain Studies, DIYgenomics, GroupPurchase, and the MS Futures Group. Ms. Swan's educational background includes an MBA in Finance from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, an MA in Contemporary Continental Philosophy from the Centre for Research in Modern European Philosophy at Kingston University London and Université Paris 8, and a BA in French and Economics from Georgetown University. She is a faculty member at Singularity University and theUniversity of the Commons, an Affiliate Scholar at the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies, and an invited contributor to the Edge's Annual Essay Question.

    Tom Kalil

    Thomas Kalil is a Senior Advisor to the Eric and Wendy Schmidt Group and Entrepreneur-in-Residence at UC Berkeley. Previously, Thomas Kalil served as the Deputy Director for Technology and Innovation for the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and Senior Advisor for Science, Technology, and Innovation for the National Economic Council. Working with agencies across the federal government, OSTP’s Technology and Innovation Division developed dozens of White House initiatives that are designed to foster American leadership in innovation, emerging technologies, and the industries of the future.

    Sonia Arrison

    Sonia Arrison is a best-selling author and analyst who has studied the impact of new technologies on society for the better part of two decades. She is co-founder of Unsugarcoat Media, as well as a founder, academic advisor, and trustee at Singularity University in Mountain View, California. Her research focuses on exponentially growing technologies and their impact on society. Her most recent book, 100 Plus: How the Coming Age of Longevity Will Change Everything, From Careers and Relationships to Family and Faith, addresses the social, economic, and cultural impacts of radical human longevity. It was a national best-seller and listed as one of the “Best Books of 2012” by the Financial Times. She is also a Board Member at the Thiel Foundation, Senior Fellow at the Fraser Institute in Vancouver, British Columbia, and author of two previous books (Western Visions and Digital Dialog). She was previously a Director and Senior Fellow in Tech Studies at the Pacific Research Institute, a columnist at TechNewsWorld, and hosted a radio show called “digital dialogue” on the Voice America network.

    Max More

    Dr. Max More is the President of Alcor Life Extension Foundation. He is an internationally acclaimed strategic futurist who writes, speaks, and organizes events about the fundamental challenges of emerging technologies. Max is concerned that our rapidly developing technological capabilities are racing far ahead of our standard ways of thinking about future possibilities. His work aims to improve our ability to anticipate, adapt to, and shape the future for the better. In developing, communicating, and implementing better ways of foreseeing possible futures and of making decisions under growing uncertainty, Max takes a highly interdisciplinary approach. Drawing on philosophy, economics, cognitive and social psychology, management theory, and other fields, he develops solutions and strategies for minimizing the dangers of progress and maximizing the benefits. Dr. More co-founded and until 2007 acted as Chairman of Extropy Institute, a diverse network of innovative thinkers committed to creating solutions to enduring human problems. He authored the Principles of Extropy, which form the core of a transhumanist perspective.

    Zooko Wilcox

    Founder and Chief Executive Officer of ZCash. Zooko has more than 20 years of experience in open, decentralized systems, cryptography and information security, and startups. He is recognized for his work on DigiCash, Mojo Nation, ZRTP, “Zooko's Triangle”, Tahoe-LAFS, BLAKE2, and SPHINCS. He is also the Founder of Least Authority. He sometimes blogs about health science. He tweets a lot.

    Kevin Perrott

    Kevin Perrott is a successful serial entrepreneur and owner of Riverside Honda, the largest Honda motorcycle dealership in Canada, who, after becoming a cancer survivor, decided to turn his attention to the study of the underlying causes of cancer and other age-related diseases. Mr. Perrott is the founder and CEO of the Aging Research Network (AgeNet), and co-founder of SENS Research Foundation and LifeStar Institute, all organizations whose mission is to extend the healthy human lifespan. In addition, he is currently a PhD candidate studying the phenomenon of senescence in a collaboration involving the University of Alberta and the Buck Institute for Research on Aging.

    Mark Miller

    Mark S. Miller is the main designer of the E and Dr. SES distributed object-capability programming languages, inventor of Miller Columns, a pioneer of agoric (market-based secure distributed) computing, an architect of the Xanadu hypertext publishing system, a representative to the EcmaScript committee, and a senior fellow of the ​Foresight Institute.

    Nathana Sharma

     

    Nathana O'Brien Sharma is the Program Director for Faculty Affairs at Singularity University. She's also faculty in Law, Policy, Ethics and Blockchain, where she writes and speaks on the impact of accelerating technologies and the future of law and governance to audiences of technologists and business leaders. Nathana is focused on the business applications of new technologies and is a principal for Crypto-Lotus, a cryptocurrency hedge fund, as well as a strategic advisor at Green Sands Equity, a global boutique private equity investment firm. Nathana serves as an Advisory Board Member for the Creative Destruction Labs in Toronto, the leading academic startup accelerator in North America which supports companies in specialized technology tracks including machine learning and quantum machine learning. Nathana holds a JD from the Yale Law School and an MBA from the Yale School of Management.

    Aubrey De Grey

    Dr. de Grey is the biomedical gerontologist who researched the idea for and founded SENS Research Foundation. He received his BA in Computer Science and Ph.D. in Biology from the University of Cambridge in 1985 and 2000, respectively. Dr. de Grey is Editor-in-Chief of Rejuvenation Research, is a Fellow of both the Gerontological Society of America and the American Aging Association, and sits on the editorial and scientific advisory boards of numerous journals and organizations.

    David Eagleman

    David Eagleman is a neuroscientist and a New York Times bestselling author. He heads the Center for Science and Law, a national non-profit institute, and serves as an adjunct professor at Stanford University. He is best known for his work on sensory substitution, time perception, brain plasticity, synesthesia, and neurolaw. He is the writer and presenter of the international PBS series, The Brain with David Eagleman, a TED speaker, a Guggenheim Fellow, Chief Scientific Advisor for the Mind Science Foundation, and a board member of The Long Now Foundation. He is founder of the company BrainCheck and the cofounder of the company NeoSensory.

    Matt Bell

    The founder of Matterport, Matt is passionate about using technology to merge the physical and digital worlds. The hundreds of thousands of spaces captured using Matterport have now been viewed over a hundred million times.Prior to Matterport, he started Reactrix, a company that created immersive, gesture-controlled interactive projected visual experiences for use in public spaces. In his early career, Matt was a researcher at Google working on automated search classification. Matt holds a BS in Computer Science from Stanford University.

    Will Marshall

    Will Marshall is the Co-Founder and CEO of Planet. Planet is a purpose-driven startup that builds and operates fleets of compact, highly capable Earth-imaging satellites. Founded by NASA scientists, Planet today operates 156 satellites, the largest satellite constellation in history, including 149 medium resolution and 7 high-resolution satellites. With this fleet, Planet has the capacity to image the entire Earth land mass every day. There is a wide range of humanitarian applications such as tracking deforestation, improving precision agriculture, water security, natural disaster relief efforts; as well as commercial applications such as consumer mapping, commodities tracking and news. Prior to Planet, Will was a Scientist at NASA/USRA where he developed a low-cost planetary bus, was Deputy System’s Engineer on lunar orbiter mission “LADEE”, a Science Team member for the lunar impactor mission “LCROSS”, served as Co-Principal Investigator on PhoneSat, and was the technical lead on research projects in space debris remediation.

    Will has published over 30 articles in scientific publications including Science magazine and he has written a variety of space-related op-eds including in the New York Times and Boston Globe. Will received his Ph.D. in Physics from the University of Oxford and his Masters in Physics with Space Science and Technology from the University of Leicester. Will was a Postdoctoral Fellow at George Washington University and Harvard University. Learn more about Will and Planet at www.planet.com and follow him and our Twitter for updates at @wsm1 and @PlanetLabs

    Allison Duettmann

    Allison is interested in applying good philosophy to guide important technologies toward the long-term flourishing of sentient life. She holds a Summa Cum Laude MS in Philosophy & Public Policy from the London School of Economics - in her dissertation she developed a moral framework for Artificial General Intelligence that relies on NLP. She hosted and planned TEDx, panels, workshops, exhibitions, debates, and conferences for governments, companies, think tanks, NGO’s and the public in Germany, France, Colombia, the UK and the US. At Foresight Institute she conducts research, authors reports, and hosts the invitational technical workshops and public events. Current research focus is Existential Hope (existentialhope.com) and the reduction of Existential Risks, especially in relation to AI. Allison also serves as advisor to the AI & Robotics Board of the Lifeboat Foundation.

    Joe Quirk

    Joe Quirk writes books. He is President of The Seasteading Institute and co-founder and Managing Director of Blue Frontiers which will build the first seastead in French Polynesia.

    In 2030, the most innovative people in the world will accelerate the future on nano-nations that float on the 45% of the earth's surface that is unclaimed by any state. We will unleash a market of voluntary governance to unleash the Singularity at Sea.

    Peter Voss

    Peter Voss' careers include being an entrepreneur, engineer and scientist. His experience includes growing a computer solutions company from zero to a 400-person IPO. For the past 15 years his focus has been on developing AGI (artificial general intelligence). In 2009 Peter founded Smart Action Company, which offers the only call automation solution powered by an AGI engine. He now heads up AGI Innovations Inc., which is developing increasingly advanced AGI systems. Peter also has a keen interest in the inter-relationship between philosophy, psychology, ethics, futurism, and computer science.

    Nick Kritikos

    Nick Kritikos leads Global Business Development for ConsenSys having recently joined the private venture production studio from Microsoft where he lead the US Microsoft Technology Centers as
    National Director since 2014. During his tenure, the MTCs tripled their revenue and customer impact while expanding engagement responsibilities and improving execution quality.

    Prior to joining Microsoft, Nick spent 18 years at Oracle, where he rose from business development and field sales roles to Vice President of Worldwide Alliances and Channels.

  • About Foresight Institute

    Foresight Institute is a non-profit dedicated to the beneficial development of technologies of fundamental importance for the human future, from molecular machines and longevity to cybersecurity and artificial intelligence. As well as awarding the Feynman Prizes and granting Foresight Fellowships, we host invitational research workshops at the intersection of scientific disciplines, and salons on high-interest topics open to the public.

     

    Conference Team:

    Allison Duettmann, Chair

    Christine Peterson, Facilitation

    Marcia Seidler, Event Organization

    Steve Burgess, President

     

    Sponsorship & Media: Inquire here.

  • Impressions

    Get a feel for what Foresight events are like

    Building Better Futures On Blockchains

    Blockchain as social force, source for truth, and role model

    Christopher Allen, Principal Architect at Blockstream
    Brian Behlendorf, Executive Director at Hyperledger
    Mark S. Miller, Senior Fellow at Foresight Institute
    Steve Omohundro, Director at Possibility Research
    Moderated by Allison Duettmann, Foresight Institute

    Drop Everything, Work On AI?

    AI: Promises, perils, panic

    Peter Voss, Head of AGI Innovations Inc
    Steve Omohundro, President, Possibility Research
    Monica Anderson, Director of Research at Syntience Inc
    Michael Andregg, Co-Founder and CSO at Fathom Computing

    Oshionera Agabi, Founder and CEO, Koniku
    Moderator: David Yanofsky, Reporter at Quartz
    Introduction: Allison Duettmann, Foresight Institute

    Tomorrow And The Day After

    Carving a path for humanity from here to there

    Bryan Johnson, Founder of Kernel, Braintree and the O/S Fund
    Richard Titus, Senior Vice President at Samsung Electronics
    Julia Bossmann, 2016 President of Foresight Institute
    Nichol Bradford, Co-Founder, Transformative Technology Lab
    Ryan Bethencourt, Program Director & Venture Partner at IndieBio
    Moderator: James Norris, Founder, Self Spark, Bay Area Futurists
    Intro: Allison Duettmann, Foresight Institute

    Life: Longer And Better

    Taking evolution into our own hands

    Joon Yun, President, Palo Alto Investors, founder The Palo Alto Prize
    David Eagleman, Neuroscientist at Stanford, creator of PBS series The Brain with David Eagleman
    Ralph Merkle, Co-founder of Nanofactory Collaboration, Faculty at Singularity University, Director of Alcor
    Joe Betts-Lacroix, Co-Founder at Vium
    Tanya Jones, Co-Founder and CEO of Arigos Biomedical
    Moderator: Christine Peterson, Co-founder of Foresight Institute
    Intro: Allison Duettmann, Foresight Institute