We will soon be able to meet and exceed the basic needs of every man, woman, and child on the planet. Abundance for all is within our grasp. This bold, contrarian view, backed up by exhaustive research, introduces our near-term future, where exponentially growing technologies and three other powerful forces are conspiring to better the lives of billions of people. This book is an antidote to pessimism by tech-entrepreneur-turned-philanthropist Peter H. Diamandis and award-winning science writer Steven Kotler.
Since the dawn of humanity, a privileged few have lived in stark contrast to the hardscrabble majority. Conventional wisdom says this gap cannot be closed. But it is closing - fast. The authors document how four forces - exponential technologies, the DIY innovator, the technophilanthropist, and the rising billion - are conspiring to solve our biggest problems. Abundance establishes hard targets for change and lays out a strategic road map for governments, industry, and entrepreneurs, giving us plenty of reason for optimism.
Examining human need by category - water, food, energy, health care, education, and freedom - Diamandis and Kotler introduce dozens of innovators making great strides in each area: Larry Page, Stephen Hawking, Dean Kamen, Daniel Kahneman, Elon Musk, Bill Joy, Stewart Brand, Jeff Skoll, Ray Kurzweil, Ratan Tata, Craig Venter, and many, many others.
©2012 Peter H, Diamandis and Steven Kotler (P)2012 Tantor
"This engaging book is a needed corrective, a whirlwind tour of the latest developments in health care, agriculture, energy, and other fields as well as an introduction to thinkers and innovators such as Daniel Kahneman, Ray Kurzweil, and Craig Ventor." (Publishers Weekly)
The perspective that the author takes on how and what is possible when you leverage technology to create abundance rather than deplete what you have.
Eyes opening book. Hope giving and stress relieving . The info will expire this year but the concept stays... And it's good concept of prosperity and abundance for all humanity
Professional librarian type, amateur historian.
As I finish listening to this book I keep thinking back to my trip to Disney World's Tomorrow Land and the ride with the animatronics singing "It's a Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow," as I note how today was viewed from circa 1970-1980-something. There is a good bit of that in this book and it's one of the things that annoyed me while listening, that and trying to figure out who the first person (singular and plural) were.
I did appreciate the book covering the progress made worldwide with cell phones and making things cheaper, and safer with less violence. One section covers education and the Khan Academy. This is stuff I have heard before, and it really depends on if you are willing to hear it all again, if this is a good book or not. Most of the good news was in the first half of the book, but then it started to lag and bore me. It got so boring that I thought I wouldn't finish it.
There is a portion that is too theoretical for me, meaning a lot of 'possibilities' but not out there in the marketplace. This is the great big beautiful tomorrow filled with GMO crops grown in office parks, kidneys grown in labs, stuff that in someone's mind could save the world but the quality and feasibility goes untested.
This book was enjoyable. It focused primarily on technology while mostly ignoring economics and governance. Sometimes the authors seemed levelheaded and other times they seemed techno-utopian. I wasn't sure what to expect based on the somewhat mixed reviews. If you're looking for a comprehensive analysis of human progress, this isn't the book for you. If you want to learn about potentially promising technologies in the near and far future, then you'll love this book.
I honestly wondered if the reader was a computer at times because it was pretty dry but I got over it!
The first half of the book was a little boring to me (although my husband loved the whole thing and has listed to it at least 3 times). However, the second half was amazing as it took a look at the world of abundance we are going toward!
Hacker obsessed with the mind and the future.
Yes, because this book presents numerous examples of what the future will be bright. Too many people see a bad future when the next 10-20 years will be the most amazing time to ever be alive in all of human history.
The Singularity is Near
The Future, More Awesome than Imagined
The optimism for the future!
No I haven't. His voice is very easy to listen to. Great reader!
The whole book was one "WOW" after another! The technology that is on it's way is too freaking amazing to even begin to comprehend! It makes me excited to see people open sourcing things and basically doing "worldwide mastermind groups"! I hope the world will start working together more and more. Wouldn't that be wonderful! I felt "hopeful" for my children's future for the first time in a long time while listening to this book.
I have recommended this book to many clients.
The future that Steven Kotler and Peter Diamandis describe sounds amazing.
I do feel that they are overly optimistic though and a bit blind for the possible setbacks.
They discuss the Arab Spring, but not the war in Syria. So they cherry pick the news they like and that fits their story. This makes the story a bit flawed in my view. Incorporating the current setbacks and explaining them in the context of their story would have made the story much more powerful.
I truly hope that their ideas about the coming abundance in Water, Food, Energy, Education, Healthcare and Freedom will come true. But I am afraid that there are too many powerful people and companies that have too much interest in keeping the current status quo intact.
Another flaw in their reasoning in my view is that they expect Moore's Law and exponential growth to apply to each field they discuss. I hope that in a few area's this might be true. But I also think that most progress in these field will turn out to be slow, linear progress and not exponential at all.
I hope that I am wrong though! :-)
Overall I will rate this book with four stars since I really did enjoy the story, it gives a lot of hope for the future!
As a last note, the writers do a lot of number crunching in this book. I found it a lot harder to stay focused listening to this, then I would have had I been reading it I think.
I have listened to this book 3 times and bring it up in conversations often. What I thought would be a book about me having abundance is in fact a book about the entire world having abundance thanks largely to technology and innovation. The way the book is written and framed though, makes me look at my life differently. For example, getting the distinction between scarcity versus inaccessibility. I can look at things (like having "enough" money) as an accessibility problem instead of a scarcity problem. It becomes much more solvable when reframed that way. (And yes, I guess I have turned this into a book about my abundance.)
The technologies and creativity covered in this book take what used to be a scarcity (like enough potable water for the entire world's population) and make them accessible things that were once inaccessible (like using the 97% of the Earth's salt water and being able to turn it into drinkable water).
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