I love those silly polls where you answer a few questions and they tell you what your superpower or enlightenment level or whatever the meme of the moment is, so you can use it as a pick-up line. Sometimes I take it a few times tweaking my answers to see if it changes the response.
It was not at one of these internet polls that I discovered my "super-power." I used a process of extrapolation to access my passionate strengths. I love to drive fast and "beat the clock". I'm constantly analyzing the past for patterns and understanding to apply to the future. I've know my future - sometimes specifically and sometimes in more vague conceptual blocks. These things led me to believe, if I had a superpower, it would be time travel. I already travel to the past, project/dream the future and play with the present.
That made me wonder, could I time travel for things beyond moi? And that's when I learned about future forecasting. I realized this was a fairly simple science at conference with Don Norman at the Palace of Fine Arts. It's basically past historical research, paying attention to current/not so current trends, technology and the direction in which it's moving (and where) and then extrapolation (one of my personal techniques).
Of course, you don't always end up with the actual reality from the extrapolation. It's part science, part art, part experience. So I would have loved to attend last night's talk with 25 year forecaster Paul Saffo. Luckily Stewart Brand send along his notes this morning. You can read them by clicking on the link....
Stewart Brand's Notes from SALT's talk: