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Ask Slashdot: What Essays and Short Stories Should Be In a Course On Futurism? 293

Posted by Soulskill
from the i-have-no-mouth-and-i-must-scream dept.
Ellen Spertus writes "I'll be teaching an interdisciplinary college course on how technology is changing the world and how students can influence that change. In addition to teaching the students how to create apps, I'd like for us to read and discuss short stories and essays about how the future (next 40 years) might play out. For example, we'll read excerpts from David Brin's Transparent Society and Ray Kurzweil's The Singularity is Near. I'm also considering excerpts of Cory Doctorow's Homeland and Neal Stephenson's Diamond Age. What other suggestions do Slashdotters have?"
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Ask Slashdot: What Essays and Short Stories Should Be In a Course On Futurism?

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  • Soylent Green (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 26, 2014 @06:15AM (#46343781)

    Make Room! Make Room! Harry Harrison. A dystopian near-future where overpopulation leads to a struggle for resources. Overcrowding, energy blackouts, food riots and soylent green. Especially look for any passages where the old man, in the main protagonists shared flat, talks about how the world used to be.

  • by captainpanic (1173915) on Wednesday February 26, 2014 @06:20AM (#46343807)

    yor students shud wrte thR essay bout d evoluation of language, UzN a modern txtN lngwij, lol!
    Oh, U ask bout reading, not writiN. ZOMG!

  • by dltaylor (7510) on Wednesday February 26, 2014 @06:49AM (#46343947)

    Sam Clemens (Mark Twain) did it better:

    For example, in Year 1 that useless letter "c" would be dropped to be replased either by "k" or "s", and likewise "x" would no longer be part of the alphabet. The only kase in which "c" would be retained would be the "ch" formation, which will be dealt with later. Year 2 might reform "w" spelling, so that "which" and "one" would take the same konsonant, wile Year 3 might well abolish "y" replasing it with "i" and Iear 4 might fiks the "g/j" anomali wonse and for all. Jenerally, then, the improvement would kontinue iear bai iear with Iear 5 doing awai with useless double konsonants, and Iears 6-12 or so modifaiing vowlz and the rimeining voist and unvoist konsonants. Bai Iear 15 or sou, it wud fainali bi posibl tu meik ius ov thi ridandant letez "c", "y" and "x" -- bai now jast a memori in the maindz ov ould doderez -- tu riplais "ch", "sh", and "th" rispektivli. Fainali, xen, aafte sam 20 iers ov orxogrefkl riform, wi wud hev a lojikl, kohirnt speling in ius xrewawt xe Ingliy-spiking werld.

    http://www.design.caltech.edu/erik/Misc/Twain_english.html [caltech.edu]

The meta-Turing test counts a thing as intelligent if it seeks to devise and apply Turing tests to objects of its own creation. -- Lew Mammel, Jr.

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