Volume 11, Number 03 – 02/28/2008

Volume 11, Number 03
02/28/2008
Edited by John L. Petersen
[email protected]

See past issues in the Archives

In This Issue:

Future Facts – From Think Links
Think Links – The Future in the News…Today
A Final Quote


FUTURE FACTS – FROM THINK LINKS
DID YOU KNOW THAT…

  • An embryo has been created with DNA from 3 people hoping to prevent inherited disease
  • Lake Mead, water supply for Phoenix and Las Vegas, could be within a few years of going dry
  • Watch a short video clip of a car that runs on water – real enough that the US military is buying it
  • Earth-like planets may have formed around most of the Milky Way’s Sun-like stars, shortening the odds on the discovery of extra-terrestrial life

 

INSTITUTIONAL CHANGE

U.S. Aims to Give Wake-up Alerts on Storms – (Reuters – February 12, 2008)
http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080212/ts_nm/storm_hurricanes
_usa_dc_1;_ylt=As0MZFNor2btubh9m1x2qAwG1vAI

In the not-too-distant future, the U.S. government would like to be able to wake up residents in the middle of the night when a hurricane or tornado threatens, perhaps by sounding the alarm on a cellphone. One of the biggest threats from hurricanes is the explosive intensification of a cyclone close to shore after residents have gone to bed, shortening the time available to safely evacuate millions of people from the crowded Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico coasts. Bill Read, the new director of the National Hurricane Center, said he would like to see a wake-up system, perhaps Internet-based and delivered by cellphone, within a decade.



GENTICS/HEALTH TECHNOLOGY


Artificial Letters Added to Life’s Alphabet
Lab on a Chip Developed for Cheap, Portable Medical Tests
Embryos Created with DNA from 3 People
Pursuing Synthetic Life, Dazzled by Reality
Pulsing Web Gives Ailing Hearts a Boost
Scientists Show Stem Cells Don’t Cause Cancer

Artificial Letters Added to Life’s Alphabet – (New Scientist – January 30, 2008)
http://technology.newscientist.com/article/dn13252-artificial-letters-added
-to-lifes-alphabet.html

Two artificial DNA “letters” that are accurately and efficiently replicated by a natural enzyme have been created by US researchers. Adding the two artificial building blocks to the four that naturally comprise DNA could allow wildly different kinds of genetic engineering. Eventually, the researchers say, they may be able to add them into the genetic code of living organisms.

Lab on a Chip Developed for Cheap, Portable Medical Tests – (Science Daily – January 29, 2008)
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/01/080129125449.htm
Researchers in Edmonton, Canada, have developed a portable unit for genetic testing about the size of a shoebox, which has the same capability as a lab full of expensive equipment. The device — along with other, even smaller units the team is now in the process of developing — paves the way for enormous savings to health-care systems and will improve care for patients. A wide variety of genetic tests that are available but not often used because their cost is prohibitive will become cheap, fast and easily accessible.

Embryos Created with DNA from 3 People – (Associated Press – February 5, 2008)
http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5hdcbUgqqy77XnKFlLA4Psop
RH0pwD8UKDBFO0

British scientists say they have created human embryos containing DNA from two women and a man in a procedure that researchers hope might be used one day to produce embryos free of inherited diseases. The process aims to create healthy embryos for couples to avoid passing on genes carrying diseases. The genes being replaced are the mitochondria, a cell’s energy source, which are contained outside the nucleus in a normal female egg. Mistakes in the mitochondria’s genetic code can result in serious diseases like muscular dystrophy, epilepsy, strokes and mental retardation.

Pursuing Synthetic Life, Dazzled by Reality – (New York Times – February 5, 2008)
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/05/science/05angi.html?_r
=1&th&emc=th&oref=slogin

Reporting in the journal Science, Dr. J. Craig Venter and his colleagues said they had fabricated the entire DNA chain of a microbial parasite called Mycoplasma genitalium, exceeding previous records of sustained DNA synthesis by some 18-fold. Any day now, the researchers say, they will pop that manufactured mortal coil into a cellular shell, where the genomic code will “boot up,” as Dr. Venter puts it, and the entire construct will begin acting like a natural-born M. genitalium — minus the capacity, the researchers promise, to infect the delicate tissues that explain the parasite’s surname.

Pulsing Web Gives Ailing Hearts a Boost – (New Scientist – February 15, 2008)
http://technology.newscientist.com/article/dn13320-pulsing-web-
gives-ailing-hearts-a-boost.html

A pulsing fibrous web to wrap around diseased hearts is being developed by UK researchers. The approach is less invasive than existing heart-assist techniques, which involve surgically plumbing a pump directly into the heart, the researchers say. Their device is made from the same polyethylene material used to make artificial heart valves. Fitted tightly over the heart’s surface, it has three constricting belts woven through its fabric, which are powered by small electric motors.

Scientists Show Stem Cells Don’t Cause Cancer – (U.S. News & World Report – February 14, 2008)
http://health.usnews.com/usnews/health/healthday/080214/scientists
-show-stem-cells-dont-cause-cancer.htm

A major concern with using stem cells to treat disease has been the possibility that the retrovirus used to implant the cells might cause cancer, but now a group of scientists appears to have solved that problem. In November, two groups of researchers showed that adult human and mouse skin cells could be reprogrammed into stem cells similar to embryonic stem cells, which can be made into any type of cell. In this latest study Japanese researchers proved these stem cells are made from normal mature adult cells, and they show that these stem cells can be implanted using a retrovirus without fear of causing cancer.


 

DISCOVERIES ENABLED BY NEW TECHNOLOGY

Researchers Demonstrate Quantum Teleportation and Memory in Tandem – (PhysOrg – January 30, 2008)
http://www.physorg.com/news120912180.html
In research that may be a key step toward real-life quantum communication—the transmission of information using atoms, photons, or other quantum objects—researchers created an experiment in which a quantum bit of information is transported across a distance of seven meters and briefly stored in memory. This is the first time that both quantum memory and teleportation, as the information transfer is known, have been demonstrated in a single experiment.



INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY

Engineers demonstrate Nanotube Wires Operating at Speed of Commercial Chips
Video Traffic Reshaping the Net
Cell Phone Can Read to You from Pictures It Takes

Engineers demonstrate Nanotube Wires Operating at Speed of Commercial Chips – (PhysOrg – January 30, 2008)
http://www.physorg.com/news120922775.html
Integrated circuits, such as the silicon chips inside all modern electronics, are only as good as their wiring, but copper conduits are approaching physical performance limitations as they get thinner. Chipmakers have hoped that carbon nanotubes would allow them to continue using thinner wiring as they pack more devices into chips, but no one had demonstrated nanotube wires working on a conventional silicon chip. However, electrical engineers at Stanford University and Toshiba have reported using nanotubes to wire a silicon chip operating at speeds comparable to those of commercially available processors and memory.

Video Traffic Reshaping the Net – (CNN – February 12, 2008)

http://www.cnn.com/2008/TECH/02/11/netvideo.ap/index.html
In 1995, the first warning was raised: the throngs of people swarming to the Internet would overwhelm the system in 1996. For more than a decade, that fear has proven untrue. Until right about now. The growing popularity of video on the Net has driven a traffic increase that’s putting strains on service providers, particularly cable companies. To deal with it, they have had to change the way they convey Internet data. And they’ve done this in secret, raising concerns — by Web companies, consumer groups and the chairman of the Federal Communications Commission — that the nature of the Internet is being altered in ways that are difficult to divine.

Cell Phone Can Read to You from Pictures It Takes – (USA Today – February 13, 2008)
http://www.usatoday.com/tech/columnist/edwardbaig/
2008-02-13-nokia-n82-blind_N.htm?loc=interstitialskip

For a blind or visually impaired person, the Nokia N82 cell phone promises much more: It’s a liberating day-to-day tool that grants access to printed materials not otherwise easily available. A sightless person can use the phone to snap a picture of a menu, book, printed receipt or business card. Software on the phone processes the words on those items and reads the text aloud in a synthesized voice. The device can even let a blind person know if paper currency is a $5 or a $20 bill.


ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUES

Companies Turn up the Green
Decline in Snowpack Is Blamed on Warming
UK Set for Early Spring Arrival
‘Doomsday’ Seeds Arrive in Norway
Israeli Find Could Help Plants Adapt to Climate Change
Biofuels Are Bad for Feeding People and Combating Climate Change
Panic in the Beehive
Harmful Pesticides Found in Everyday Food Products
Lake Mead Could Be Within a Few Years of Going Dry
Scientists Blame Ocean Dead Zones on Climate Change

Companies Turn up the Green – (USA Today – January 30, 2008)
http://www.usatoday.com/money/industries/environment/2008-01-30
-greenbiz-green-companies_N.htm

In the greening of Corporate America, U.S. companies have made progress but still face a long trek to improve environmental practices. Beyond the hype, according to “State of Green Business 2008” report, obstacles include: toxic emissions, a lack of standards and misleading claims. The article includes a link to the full report.

Decline in Snowpack Is Blamed on Warming – (Washington Post – February 1, 2008)
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/01/31/
AR2008013101868.html?wpisrc=newsletter

The persistent and dramatic decline in the snowpack of many mountains in the West is caused primarily by human-induced global warming and is not the result of natural variability in weather patterns, according to a study published online by the journal Science. Using data collected over the past 50 years, the scientists confirmed that the mountains are getting more rain and less snow, that the snowpack is breaking up faster and that more rivers are running dry by summer. The study looked at possible causes including natural variability in temperatures and precipitation, volcanic activity around the globe and climate change driven by the release of greenhouse gases. Computer models showed that climate change is clearly the explanation that best fits the data.

UK Set for Early Spring Arrival – (BBC News – February 4, 2008)
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/7225628.stm
Mounting evidence suggests spring is arriving in the UK early this year. Some species of frogs, butterflies and plants have become “startlingly” active. However, this phenomenon has left certain species vulnerable to wintry cold snaps, calling their long term survival into question.

‘Doomsday’ Seeds Arrive in Norway – (BBC News – January 31, 2008)
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/7217821.stm
The first consignment of seeds bound for the “doomsday vault” on Svalbard has arrived in Norway. The vault is intended to act as insurance so that food production can be restarted anywhere on Earth after a regional or global catastrophe. Built deep inside a mountain, the structure will eventually house a vast collection of seeds; safeguarding world crops against possible future disasters including nuclear wars and dangerous climate change.

Israeli Find Could Help Plants Adapt to Climate Change – (Yahoo – February 6, 2008)
http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20080206/wl
_mideast_afp/israelsciencefarmwarming

Israeli scientists have identified genes that help plants weather harsh conditions. Scientists at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev found that mutating one of two genes in a model plant increased its ability to survive in desert environments. The development of plants better able to endure harsh desert conditions could prove extremely important to Israel and other countries in the Middle East and North Africa suffering from increasing shortages of water. It could also have global implications, as climate change is expected to lead to significant drops in the production of key crops in both Asia and Africa, according to a study recently released by Stanford University.

Panic in the Beehive – (BBC News – February 12, 2008)
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/7240456.stm
In a few weeks’ time, Britain’s thousands of amateur beekeepers will face what might be called “Bee-Day”. In the south of England, the weather will be warm enough that apiarists can lift the tops off their hives for the first time and find out if their colonies have survived the winter. And these beekeepers are worried. Every winter some colonies are lost. But last year saw widespread anecdotal reports of above average losses, and the enthusiasts fear this year could be worse.

Disappearing Bees Threaten Ice Cream Sellers – (CNN – February 20, 2008)
http://money.cnn.com/2008/02/17/news/companies/bees_icecream/index.htm?
postversion=2008021712

Premium maker Haagen-Dazs says vanishing bee colonies in the United States could mean fewer flavors and higher prices. That’s because, according to Haagen-Dazs, one-third of the U.S. food supply – including a variety of fruits, vegetables and even nuts – depends on pollination from bees. Haagen-Dazs said bees are critical for 40% of its 60 flavors – such as strawberry, toasted pecan and banana split. The company is donating $250,000 to both Pennsylvania State University and the University of California, Davis to fund research into the bee colony collapse disorder (CCD).

Harmful Pesticides Found in Everyday Food Products – (Seattle Post Intilligencer – January 30, 2008)
http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/local/349263_pesticide30.html?source=mypi
Government promises to rid the nation’s food supply of brain-damaging pesticides aren’t doing the job, according to the results of a yearlong study that carefully monitored the diets of a group of Seattle area children. The peer-reviewed study found that the urine and saliva of children eating a variety of conventional foods from area groceries contained biological markers of organophosphates, the family of pesticides spawned by the creation of nerve gas agents in World War II. Within eight to 36 hours of the children switching to organic food, the pesticides were no longer detected in the testing.

Lake Mead Could Be Within a Few Years of Going Dry – (New York Times – February 13, 2008)
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/13/us/13mead.html?_r=1&ei=5070&en=
67ffb5e72641df41&ex=1203570000&adxnnl=1&emc=eta1&adxnnlx=
1203258420-3i5MgTSCY9V82lat6SRhyQ&oref=slogin

Lake Mead, the vast reservoir for the Colorado River water that sustains the fast-growing cities of Phoenix and Las Vegas, has a 50% chance of becoming unusable by 2021 if the demand for water remains unchanged and if human-induced climate change follows climate scientists’ moderate forecasts, resulting in a reduction in average river flows. Demand for Colorado River water already slightly exceeds the average annual supply when high levels of evaporation are taken into account, the researchers point out.

Scientists Blame Ocean Dead Zones on Climate Change – (San Francisco Chronicle – February 20, 2008)
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/02/20/MNQNV50EU.DTL
Video images scanned from the seafloor off the coast of the Pacific Northwest revealed a boneyard of crab skeletons, dead fish and other marine life smothered under a white mat of bacteria. Marine ecologists at Oregon State University have concluded that that the undersea plague appears to be a symptom of global warming. If this theory holds up, it means that global warming and the build-up of heat-trapping gases are bringing about oceanic changes beyond those previously documented: a rise in sea level, more acidic ocean water and the bleaching of coral reefs. Low-oxygen dead zones, which have doubled in number every decade and exist around the world, have a variety of causes



AUGMENTED/ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE

Fully Robotic Observatory Set Up In Antarctica
Machines to Match Man by 2029

Fully Robotic Observatory Set Up In Antarctica – (Science Daily – February 7, 2008)
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/02/080201215412.htm
A fully robotic observatory, dubbed PLATeau Observatory or PLATO, is predicted to result in new insights into the universe once possible only from space. A team of scientists representing six international institutions has succeeded in reaching the summit of Antarctica to establish a new astronomical observatory at Dome Argus on the highest point of the Antarctic Plateau. Built by the University of New South Wales (UNSW) in Sydney, Australia, PLATO is designed to operate autonomously for up to 12 months at a time while sending back data via the Iridium satellite network. Powered by an array of solar panels during summer and small, high-efficiency diesel engines through the darkest winter months, it will be efficient as well as environmentally friendly, according to its developers.

Machines to Match Man by 2029 – (BBC News – February 16, 2008)
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/7248875.stm
Machines will achieve human-level artificial intelligence by 2029, a leading US inventor has predicted. Humanity is on the brink of advances that will see tiny robots implanted in people’s brains to make them more intelligent, said Ray Kurzweil. The engineer believes machines and humans will eventually merge through devices implanted in the body to boost intelligence and health.


 

ENERGY DEVELOPMENTS

Biofuels Deemed a Greenhouse Threat
Biofuels Are Bad for Feeding People and Combating Climate Change
WaterFuel
Spray-On Solar-Power Cells Are True Breakthrough

Biofuels Deemed a Greenhouse Threat – (New York Times – February 8, 2008)
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/08/science/earth/08wbiofuels.html?_r
=1&th&emc=th&oref=slogin

Almost all biofuels used today cause more greenhouse gas emissions than conventional fuels if the full emissions costs of producing these “green” fuels are taken into account. Two studies take a detailed, comprehensive look at the emissions effects of the huge amount of natural land that is being converted to cropland globally to support biofuels development. The destruction of natural ecosystems — whether rain forest in the tropics or grasslands in South America — not only releases greenhouse gases into the atmosphere when they are burned and plowed, but also deprives the planet of natural sponges to absorb carbon emissions. Cropland also absorbs far less carbon than the rain forests or even scrubland that it replaces.

Biofuels Are Bad for Feeding People and Combating Climate Change – (Scientific American – February 8, 2008)
http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?id=biofuels-bad-for-people-and-climate
Here is another report on the same research that presumes that the future will be like the past. Ethanol will not be produced from corn in the very near future (at least not the grain portion of corn plants), it will come from cellulosic biomass and will be converted to alcohol using enzymes – a low energy approach. These kinds of studies, though misguided will help to push the industry away from the old methods of corn and distillation. JLP

WaterFuel – (YouTube – date unknown)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vm5JhpWt4GQ
In this 2 ½ minute video clip from Fox News, Denny Klein demonstrates welding equipment and a car that run on water. Mr. Klein’s patented processes have secured a contract to develop a hybrid Hummer for the US military that runs on water and gasoline.

Spray-On Solar-Power Cells Are True Breakthrough – (National Geographic News – January 14, 2008)
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2005/01/0114_050114
_solarplastic.html

Scientists have invented a plastic solar cell that can turn the sun’s power into electrical energy, even on a cloudy day. The plastic material uses nanotechnology and contains the first solar cells able to harness the sun’s invisible, infrared rays. The breakthrough has led theorists to predict that plastic solar cells could one day become five times more efficient than current solar cell technology.


GLOBAL EPIDEMIC

Drug-Resistant Flu Virus on the Rise – (Time – January 31, 2008)
http://www.time.com/time/health/article/0,8599,1708867,00.html?
xid=newsletter-weekly

This winter’s most common flu strain is showing resistance to the frontline anti-flu treatment, new data shows. More than 10% of virus samples taken in Western Europe this winter were resistant to oseltamivir, better known as Tamiflu, according to figures from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC). The number of resistant strains are still small overall, but the superbugs aren’t evenly distributed around the world. In the end, the most troubling thing about the ECDC study was the 75% resistance rate found in Norway.



TERRORISM, SECURITY AND THE FUTURE OF WARFARE

Effort to Shoot Down Satellite Could Inform Military Strategy
Spies’ Battleground Turns Virtual

Effort to Shoot Down Satellite Could Inform Military Strategy – (Washington Post – February 20, 2008)
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/02/19
/AR2008021902510.html

The Bush administration’s attempt to shoot down an out-of-control spy satellite will help the military advance its anti-missile and anti-satellite planning and technology, according to space weapons experts and analysts. The attempted shoot-down will also enable the Pentagon to practice using, in an urgent scenario, key elements of its space defense apparatus, including the Joint Space Operations Center at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California and its sophisticated space identification, tracking and targeting system. The attempt will further provide an unscripted opportunity to see whether ship-based missiles can blow up the satellite just as it reenters Earth’s atmosphere – a key moment in any attempt to intercept an intercontinental missile that might someday be launched against the United States.

Spies’ Battleground Turns Virtual – (Washington Post – February 6, 2008)
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/02/05
/AR2008020503144.html

U.S. intelligence officials are cautioning that popular Internet services that enable computer users to adopt cartoon-like personas in three-dimensional online spaces also are creating security vulnerabilities by opening novel ways for terrorists and criminals to move money, organize and conduct corporate espionage. Virtual worlds could also become an actual battlefield. The intelligence community has begun contemplating how to use Second Life and other such communities as platforms for cyber weapons that could be used against terrorists or enemies, intelligence officials said. One analyst suggested beginning tests with so-called teams of cyber warfare experts.


 

NANOTECHNOLOGY

DNA Construction Kit Self-assembles 3D ‘Crystals’ – (New Scientist – 30 January, 2008)
http://technology.newscientist.com/article/dn13254-dna-construction-kit
-selfassembles-3d-crystals.html

Strands of DNA can be programmed to assemble nanoparticles into 3D structures, pointing towards a new way to engineer materials from the bottom up. Two research groups have demonstrated the technique, using squid-like gold nanoparticles with “arms” made of DNA. “These are fundamentally new structures of matter,” says Chad Mirkin of Northwestern University, who led one of the groups. Previously, only flat shapes have been assembled in this way; attempts to make 3D structures had only produced amorphous clumps of particles.



CONTACT AND THE EXPLORATION OF SPACE

Earth-like Planet Discovery adds to Likelihood of Extraterrestrial Life – (Times – February 18, 2008)

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/science/article3386347.ece
Earth-like planets may have formed around most of the Milky Way’s Sun-like stars, according to research that shortens the odds on the discovery of extra-terrestrial life. Observations using Nasa’s Spitzer Space Telescope have found that at least 20% — and perhaps as many as 60% — of our galaxy’s Sun-like stars are good candidates for having rocky planets of the sort that can harbor life. The findings offer further evidence suggesting that such worlds may be common in the galaxy, which would greatly enhance the prospects for finding one on which life has developed.



ECONOMIC INDICATORS


Dollar Daze — NYC Shops Accepting Euros – (Reuters – February 7, 2008)

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/23053424/from/ET/
In the latest example that the U.S. dollar just ain’t what it used to be, some shops in New York City have begun accepting Euros and other foreign currency as payment for merchandise. “We had decided that money is money and we’ll take it and just do the exchange whenever we can with our bank,” Robert Chu, owner of East Village Wines. Billy Leroy of Billy’s Antiques & Props is happy to accept Euros. He just hangs onto them “so when I go back to Paris, I don’t have to go through the nightmare of going to an exchange place.”



DEMOGRAPHICS

Saudi Arabia Bans All Things Red Ahead of Valentine’s Day
Global Migration Patterns and Job Creation

Saudi Arabia Bans All Things Red Ahead of Valentine’s Day – (CNN – February 12, 2008)
http://www.cnn.com/2008/WORLD/meast/02/12/saudi.valentine/index.html
Saudi Arabia asks florists and gift shops to remove all red items from sale until after Valentine’s Day, calling the celebration of such a holiday a sin, according to a local media report. Every year, officials with the conservative Muslim kingdom’s Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice clamp down on shops a few days before February 14, instructing them to remove red roses, red wrapping paper, gift boxes and teddy bears. On the eve of the holiday, they raid stores and seize merchandise. Because of the ban on red roses, a black market has flowered ahead of Valentine’s Day. Roses that normally go for five Saudi riyal ($1.30) fetch up to 30 riyal ($8) on February 14, the Saudi Gazette said.

Global Migration Patterns and Job Creation – (Gallup – October 11, 2007)
http://gmj.gallup.com/content/101680/Global-Migration-Patterns-
Job-Creation.aspx#1

More and more often, global leaders are asking us the same simple, yet colossal, question: “Does anyone know for sure what the world is thinking?” Global leaders are right to wonder. To know what the whole world is thinking — not just what people in their own countries are thinking — on almost all issues all the time would certainly make their jobs a lot easier at the very least. To try to answer that question, Gallup has created a new body of behavioral economic data for world leaders that represents the opinion of all 6 billion inhabitants, reported by country and almost all demographics and sociographics imaginable. They call it the World Poll.



TRENDS OF GOVERNMENT

FBI Deputizes Private Contractors with Extraordinary Powers, Including ‘Shoot to Kill’
Senate Authorizes Broad Expansion of Surveillance Act

FBI Deputizes Private Contractors with Extraordinary Powers, Including ‘Shoot to Kill’ – (AlterNet – February 8, 2008)
http://www.alternet.org/story/76388/
More than 23,000 representatives of private industry are working quietly with the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security. The members of this rapidly growing group, called InfraGard, receive secret warnings of terrorist threats before the public does – and, at least on one occasion, before elected officials. In return, they provide information to the government, which alarms the ACLU. But there may be more to it than that. One business executive in the InfraGard card said they have permission to “shoot to kill” in the event of martial law. In November 2001, InfraGard had around 1,700 members. As of late January, InfraGard had 23,682 members, according to its website, www.infragard.net, which adds that “350 of our nation’s Fortune 500 have a representative in InfraGard.”

Senate Authorizes Broad Expansion of Surveillance Act – (Washington Post – February 13, 2008)
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/story/2008
/02/12/ST2008021203095.html

The Senate has approved a sweeping measure that would expand the government’s clandestine surveillance powers, delivering a key victory to the White House by approving immunity from lawsuits for telecommunications companies that cooperated with intelligence agencies in domestic spying after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. On a 68 to 29 vote, the Senate approved the reauthorization of a law that would give the government greater powers to eavesdrop in terrorism and intelligence cases without obtaining warrants from a secret court.



JUST FOR FUN

Frozen at Grand Central Station
James Bond-style Amphibious Car Launched

Frozen at Grand Central Station – (You Tube – date unknown)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jwMj3PJDxuo
How do we behave when our basic assumptions about standard social conduct in a public place are significantly challenged? At the exact same moment, 207 people suddenly “froze” in place in New York’s Grand Central Station for five minutes in what might be described as large-scale performance art. The reactions of other people around these 207 are fascinating to watch.

James Bond-style Amphibious Car Launched – (CNN – February 15, 2008)
http://www.cnn.com/2008/WORLD/europe/02/15/underwater.car.ap/index.html
The Swiss have invented a car that runs on land and underwater. But did they REALLY have to make it a convertible? It’s called the “sQuba,” and conjures up memories of James Bond’s amphibious Lotus Esprit from “The Spy Who Loved Me.” The concept car – it cost more than $1.5 million to make the sole sQuba in existence – was developed by Swiss designer Rinspeed Inc. and is set to make a splash at the Geneva Auto Show next month. The sQuba can plow through the water at a depth of 30 feet and has electrical motors to turn the underwater screw.


 

A FINAL QUOTE…

Prediction is very difficult, especially about the future. – Niels Bohr


A special thanks to: Tom Burgin, Ken Dabkowski, Richard Dell, Neil Freer, Ursula Freer, KurzweilAI, Sue-Ann Lee, David Martin, Sebastian McCallister, Diane C. Petersen, Pamela Skarda, the Schwartzreport, Joel Snell, Steve Ujvarosy, Uncle Jim, and Chris Young, our contributors to this issue.

If you see something we should know about, do send it along – thanks.
[email protected]


 

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Freddy Silva

Freddy Silva is a best-selling author, and leading researcher of ancient civilizations, restricted history, sacred sites and their interaction with consciousness. He has published six books in six languages, and produced eleven documentaries. Described by one CEO as “perhaps the best metaphysical speaker in the world right now,” for two decades he has been an international keynote speaker, with notable appearances at the International Science and Consciousness Conference, the International Society For The Study Of Subtle Energies & Energy Medicine, and the Association for Research and Enlightenment, in addition to appearances on Gaia TV, History Channel, BBC, and radio shows such as Coast To Coast. He also leads private sell-out tours to ancient temples worldwide. www.invisibletemple.com

Paul H. Smith

Paul H. Smith is the longest-serving controlled remote viewing (CRV) teacher active today, having begun his career as an instructor in 1984. He served for seven years in the government’s Star Gate remote viewing program at Ft. Meade, MD (from September 1983 to August 1990). Starting 1984, he became one of only five Star Gate personnel to be personally trained as remote viewers by the legendary founders of remote viewing, Ingo Swann and Dr. Harold E. Puthoff at SRI-International.

John L. Petersen

John L. Petersen is considered by many to be one of the most informed futurists in the world. He is best-known for writing and thinking about high impact surprises (wild cards) and the process of surprise anticipation. His current professional involvements include the development of sophisticated tools for anticipatory analysis and surprise anticipation, long-range strategic planning and helping leadership design new approaches for dealing with the future.

 

He has led national non-profit organizations, worked in sales, manufacturing, real estate development, and marketing and advertising, mostly for companies he founded. A graduate electrical engineer, he has also promoted rock concerts; produced conventions; and worked as a disc jockey, among other things.

Mr. Petersens government and political experience include stints at the National War College, the Institute for National Security Studies, the Office of the Secretary of Defense, and the National Security Council staff at the White House. He was a naval flight officer in the U.S. Navy and Navy Reserve and is a decorated veteran of both the Vietnam and Persian Gulf wars. He has served in senior positions for a number of presidential political campaigns and was an elected delegate to the Democratic National Convention in 1984. He was twice the runner-up to be Secretary of the Navy.

In 1989, Petersen founded The Arlington Institute (TAI), a non-profit, future-oriented research institute. TAI operates on the premise that effective thinking about the future is impossible without casting a very wide net. The “think tank” serves as a global agent for change by developing new concepts, processes and tools for anticipating the future and translating that knowledge into better present-day decisions. Using advanced information technology, a core group of bright thinkers and an international network of exceptionally curious people along with simulations, modeling, scenario building, polling and analysis, Arlington helps equip leaders and organizations from many disciplines with tools and actionable perspectives for dealing with uncertain times.

An award-winning writer, Petersens first book, The Road to 2015: Profiles of the Future was awarded Outstanding Academic Book of 1995 by CHOICE Academic Review, and remained on The World Future Societys best-seller list for more than a year. His Out of the Blue: How to Anticipate Wild Cards and Big Future Surprises book was also a WFS best-seller. His latest book is a Vision of 2012: Planning for Extraordinary Change. His coauthored article, (The Year 2000: Social Chaos or Social Transformation?) was one of the most highly acclaimed writings on Y2K. His 1988 book-length report (The Diffusion of Power: An Era of Realignment) was used at the highest levels of American government as a basis for strategic planning. He has also written papers on the future of national security and the military, the future of energy and the future of the media.

Petersen is a past board member of the World Future Society, writes on the future of aviation for Professional Pilot magazine and is the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Charles A. and Anne Morrow Lindbergh Foundation. He is a former network member of the Global Business Network and a fellow of the World Academy of Art and Science. A provocative public speaker, he addresses a wide array of audiences around the world on a variety of future subjects. When he is not writing or speaking, Petersen invests in and develops resources for large, international projects and advanced technology start-up companies. He lives in the Washington, D.C. area in the eastern panhandle of West Virginia. Speaking Inquiries: Email [email protected]

Rosemary Ellen Guiley

Rosemary Ellen Guiley is a leading expert on the paranormal and supernatural. With more than 50 books – including 10 encyclopedias – and hundreds of articles in print on a wide range of paranormal, spiritual and mystical topics, she possesses exceptional knowledge of the field. Her present work focuses on inter-dimensional entity contact experiences and communication.

Gregg Braden

Gregg Braden is a five-time New York Times best-selling author, and is internationally renowned as a pioneer in bridging science, spirituality and human potential! His discoveries have led to 12 award-winning books now published in over 40 languages. The UK’s Watkins Journal lists Gregg among the top 100 of “the world’s most spiritually influential living people” for the 5th consecutive year, and he is a 2017 nominee for the prestigious Templeton Award.

Dr. Harold Puthoff

Although nominated for a Nobel Prize in physics for his breakthrough theoretical work on zero-point energy, Dr. Harold Puthoff, is most recognized for having been a co-founder of the secret US government “remote viewing” program that successfully used psychics to spy on the Soviet Union and China.

Now a principal and science advisor in a leading-edge effort by former senior military and intelligence managers to disclose the many decades of interest that the US has had in UFOs, he comes to Berkeley Springs on the 8th of February to give a TransitionTalk about his work in making sense out of the UFO phenomena.

Dr. Puthoff’s presentation will include a summary of his current activities with To The Stars Academy, which is on the forefront of bringing into the open formerly highly classified efforts by the government to track, record and understand the meaning of hundreds of encounters that the military has had with UFOs over the past years.

This is an extraordinary opportunity to learn from and question one of the foremost thinkers and leaders of the rapidly accelerating global effort to both make the public aware of what was previously unacknowledged about UFO and alien interaction with humans and also to address the deep questions about what is happening and what it might mean for the future of humanity.

Regina Meredith

As Regina’s career progressed, so did her decades long exploration into the world of esoteric and hidden sciences – the reality beyond the 5 sense world. Guidance from these realms suggested it was time to bring her skill set to the world of video/televised media, so in late 2004, along with her husband Scott, she co-created ‘Conscious Media Network’, the first online network to feature full length original video interviews with authors and experts in the realms of the meta-physical, healing arts and alternative theories, opening up a world that many had experienced but never had access to on this scale.

Gaia: In 2012, Conscious Media Network merged with Gaiam TV in 2012, with Regina serving as anchor in their new media division on Open Minds and Healing Matrix. The demand for Regina’s unique perspective on a variety of subjects has drawn attention from conference organizers, moving her into the public as a presenter at conferences. In addition, Regina offers retreats and workshops for those who wish to ‘Dive Deep’ into a new understanding of the nature of reality and life itself. In this venue she shares her exclusive approach to meditation and regression work for a greater understanding of life’s challenges and identifying the innate joys.

Joni Patry

Joni Patry is one of the most recognized teachers and Vedic astrologers in the world. She was a faculty member for ACVA, CVA and Instructor for online certification programs, published many books, journals and appeared on national and international television shows. As the keynote speaker for international conferences, she has a Japanese website, and teaches in Austria, Turkey and India. She has been awarded the 2015 Jyotish Star of the year and Dr B. V. Raman’s Janma Shatamanothsava Award Jyotisha Choodamani. She publishes an online astrological magazine, Astrologic Magazine http://astrologicmagazine.com/ and has an online University for certification, the University of Vedic Astrology. http://universityofvedicastrology.com

Alain Nu

Las Vegas headliner, Alain Nu – “The Man Who Knows”, brings us his mind-bending mental and metaphysical abilities. His highly entertaining and most provocative show intermingles feats of mind-reading and spoon bending with other baffling demonstrations that defy explanation.

Penny Kelly

Penny Kelly is an author, teacher, speaker, publisher, personal and spiritual consultant, and Naturopathic physician. She travels, lectures, and teaches a variety of classes and workshops, and maintains a large consulting practice. She has been involved in scientific research and investigations into consciousness at Pinelandia Laboratory near Ann Arbor, MI.

Joey Korn

Joey Korn is one of the most accomplished dowsers in the world. Known internationally for an extraordinary ability to change and manipulate energy at all levels, he brings a deep, practical understanding of how to balance these energies . . . and change the way that they influence humans and their lives.

Jim McCarty

In 1980, Jim McCarty joined L/L Research where Don Elkins and Carla L. Rueckert were researching the field of the paranormal in general, and contact with extraterrestrial intelligence in particular. Soon later the Ra Contact began, producing 106 sessions with the social memory complex of Ra. Five books of The Law of One series were published documenting this contact.

Charles Eisenstein

Charles Eisenstein is a teacher, speaker, and writer focusing on themes of civilization, consciousness, money, and human cultural evolution. His on-line writings have generated a vast following; he speaks frequently at conferences and other events and gives numerous interviews on radio and podcasts.

Raymon Grace

Raymon Grace, one of the world’s most extraordinary dowsers, travels the world teaching and demonstrating how dowsing can be used by most anyone to change themselves and the world around them. His down-home, direct approach is sought out by many thousands of searchers who are looking for bettering their lives and dealing with the extraordinary change that the world is experiencing.

Dennis McKenna

Dennis McKenna’s research has focused on the interdisciplinary study of Amazonian ethnopharmacology and plant hallucinogens. His doctoral research (University of British Columbia, 1984) focused on the ethnopharmacology of ayahuasca and oo-koo-he, two tryptamine-based hallucinogens used by indigenous peoples in the Northwest Amazon. Dr. McKenna is author or co-author of 4 books and over 50 scientific papers in peer-reviewed journals.

Dr. Larry Dossey

Dr. Larry Dossey is a physician of internal medicine and former Chief of Staff of Medical City Dallas Hospital. He received his M. D. degree from Southwestern Medical School (Dallas), and trained in internal medicine at Parkland and the VA hospitals in Dallas. Dossey has lectured at medical schools and hospitals throughout the United States and abroad. In 1988 he delivered the annual Mahatma Gandhi Memorial Lecture in New Delhi, India, the only physician ever invited to do so. He is the author of twelve books dealing with consciousness, spirituality, and healing, including the New York Times bestseller HEALING WORDS: THE POWER OF PRAYER AND THE PRACTICE OF MEDICINE, and most recently One Mind: How Our Individual Mind Is Part of a Greater Consciousness and Why It Matters. His books have been translated into languages around the world. Dr. Dossey is the former co-chairman of the Panel on Mind/Body Interventions, National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, National Institutes of Health. He is the executive editor of the peer-reviewed journal EXPLORE: The Journal of Science and Healing. Dr. Dossey lectures around the world. He lives in Santa Fe with his wife Barbara, a nurse-consultant and the author of several award-winning books.

Lee Carrol a.k.a. Kryon

Lee Carroll, Ph.D. has channeled Kryon for 25 years worldwide and is the author of the Kryon Series of 16 books in 24 languages. Well known in metaphysics, Kryon books have made the top seller’s list within months of their release. Having presented seven times at the United Nations in New York, as well as in 33 different countries overseas, Lee attracts audiences in the thousands.

Good health is dependent on the appropriate transfer of information within and between cells. The informational and molecular disharmonies associated with disease can be reversed using appropriate therapeutic signals that stimulate the return to the normal state without adverse effects. One such signal molecule, SLO, has demonstrated clinical utility in a broad spectrum of indications that would at first glance appear to be unrelated. The underlying common thread that links these disorders is representative of the targets to which resonant molecular signals are directed.

Robert David Steele

Robert David Steele, former spy, former Marine Corps officer, a proponent of Open Source Everything, Presidential candidate in 2012 and perhaps again in 2024, recommended for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2017 will integrate his life’s experience with his lessons from the works of others to explore love versus fear as a foundation for politics; liberty under natural law versus predatory fascism as we now have in the USA; and the possibilities for cosmic awakening very soon, in a full-on defeat of the Deep State and its Archon masters.

Thomas Drake

Thomas Drake is a former senior executive at the National Security Agency where he blew the whistle on massive multi-billion dollar fraud, waste and abuse; the widespread violations of the rights of citizens through secret mass surveillance programs after 9/11; and critical 9/11 intelligence failures. He is the recipient of the 2011 Ridenhour Truth Telling Prize, a joint recipient with Jesselyn Radack of the 2011 Sam Adams Associates Integrity in Intelligence Award and the 2012 Hugh M. Hefner First Amendment Award. He is now dedicated to the defense of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. 

Chris Robinson

Chris Robinson’s amazing ability to dream about the future in terms that can be reliably translated into people, times, places, and activities has been the subject of books, major university scientific studies, films, articles, TV shows, and just about all forms of media. He has taught many people how to dream about the future and, through his advanced intuitive capabilities, helped thousands to understand how to deal with seemingly impossible personal situations. He is also a healer, having on numerous occasions led people with supposedly terminal conditions to eliminate those issues and return to a healthy life. There is no one else in the world that has Chris’s fascinating background (undercover police work, etc.), coupled with these amazing personal gifts.

Dr. John McMichael

John McMichael, PhD, is the founder and CEO of Beach Tree Labs, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and early development of new therapeutic agents targeting unmet medical needs. These disorders range from herpes infections to chronic fatigue syndrome to urinary incontinence. His PhD is in virology and immunology from Oregon State University. He headed up the labs at one of the largest private veterinary research practices in the country, was a college professor for more than a decade, and now works out of a small lab on his form in New York state and a larger, more sophisticated lab in Providence, Rhode Island. He holds over 200 patents, has published in books and peer-reviewed journals, and is currently working with his team to begin formal FDA trials for product candidates for chronic traumatic brain injury and Ehlers-Danlos syndromes.

Good health is dependent on the appropriate transfer of information within and between cells. The informational and molecular disharmonies associated with disease can be reversed using appropriate therapeutic signals that stimulate the return to the normal state without adverse effects. One such signal molecule, SLO, has demonstrated clinical utility in a broad spectrum of indications that would at first glance appear to be unrelated. The underlying common thread that links these disorders is representative of the targets to which resonant molecular signals are directed.

Kingsley L. Dennis Phd.

Kingsley L. Dennis, PhD, is a sociologist, researcher, and writer. He previously worked in the Sociology Department at Lancaster University, UK. Kingsley is the author of numerous articles on social futures; technology and new media communications; global affairs; and conscious evolution. He is the author of several critically acclaimed books including Healing the Wounded Mind, The Sacred Revival, The Phoenix Generation, New Consciousness for a New World, Struggle for Your Mind, After the Car, and the celebrated Dawn of the Akashic Age (with Ervin Laszlo). He has traveled extensively and lived in various countries. He currently lives in Andalusia, Spain.

 

His homepage is www.kingsleydennis.com

Gary Sycalik

Gary Sycalik has been described as an entrepreneur, businessman, project developer/manager, consultant/advisor, organizational troubleshooter, strategic planner, facilitator, futurist, business and social architect, complex problematic game designer (policy, strategic, tactic levels) and writer. Gary brings a robust horizontal and vertical functional capability to any project from the conceptual to operational stage.

Joe Dispenza

needs bio…

Coxon

Needs Bio…

Steve McDonald

nedds bio…

Mary Rodwell

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Dr. Carrie Hempel & Brian Sanderoff

Integrative Physician Dr. Carrie Hempel and Holistic Pharmacist Brian Sanderoffare both experts in the medicinal use of cannabis in Maryland.

Dr. Hempel is a graduate of the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine in 2002. As an Osteopathic Physician, she has embraced a holistic approach to patient care, providing loving attention to the relationship between mind, body, and spirit. For the past 11 years she has received specialist training, Board Certification and expertise in several fields including Internal Medicine, Pulmonary & Critical Care Medicine, and Hospice & Palliative Medicine, along with many Integrative modalities. She is a member of the Society of Cannabis Clinicians, the Association of Cannabis Specialists, and is registered with the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission.

Over the course of her career she has seen the consistent struggle of patients dealing with chronic, progressive, debilitating illness, and witnessed the challenges and limitations of the current pharmaceutical options for pain and symptom managment. Her passion for this population has grown, along with her desire to advocate for patients to have access to non-opioid, holistic options to enhance quality of life and optimize function.

Trained as a pharmacist, Brian Sanderoff has integrated 25 years of experience with his traditional medical training and herbalism, nutrition and numerous other holistic modalities to help clients devise practical, common-sense, safe solutions to most any health issue.

His clients appreciate how he embraces a complementary approach to health and how his holistic “compass” brings them new solutions to their unique health concerns – especially chronic diseases.

Sharry Edwards

Sharry Edwards has been accused of being too scientific by some, too esoteric by others. In actuality, she is a bridge between both fields of inquiry. Sharry is the acknowledged pioneer in the emerging field of Vocal Profiling using BioAcoustic Biology. For many years she has provided the leading-edge research to show the voice as a holographic representation of the body that can be used to change the face of medicine.

Sharry asks that we imagine a future in which we can be individually identified and maintained through the use of frequency based biomarkers that keep us healthy and emotionally balanced. Her work at the Institute of BioAcoustic Biology has shown that we can each have dominion over those frequencies by individual mind management or a simple remote control that is completely programmable. Using the unique techniques of Vocal Profiling and evaluation, emotional as well as physiological issues can be revealed and addressed.

Her work with the human voice reveals that people who share similar traumas, stresses, diseases, toxicities…share similar, if not identical, vocal anomalies. She brings together ancient knowledge with modern ideas of harmonics and frequency relationship theories to show that math can be used as a form of predictive, diagnostic and curative foundation for wellness. Through entrainment of the frequency grids of the brain, the body can be programmed to support its own optimal form and function.

Penny Kelly

Penny Kelly is an author, teacher, speaker, publisher, personal and spiritual consultant, and Naturopathic physician. She travels, lectures, and teaches a variety of classes and workshops, and maintains a large consulting practice. She has been involved in scientific research and investigations into consciousness at Pinelandia Laboratory near Ann Arbor, MI.