Earlier this year I decided to follow-up on one of my long-term dreams: to go back to school.
When I went to college over a decade ago, my original plan was to go straight through and get my Ph.d and go on to write, teach and research. The only problem was - I had no idea what I wanted to focus on. That is why I focused my academic time on learning to communicate. I had many thoughts and idea and understandings of the world that I found difficult to communicate. With words, with pictures.
How does one communicate unclear baby ideas? With poetry.
So I thought I wanted to be a poet. I learned to communicate with metaphors and similes and like/as comparisons. Mathematical propositions.
At the center of my inquire was understanding and perspectives. I realized early on that people have a wide variety of many different perspectives. And all perspectives were valid - although some were more universally accepted than others. Some were thought of as right or wrong. And I too thought some things were right and wrong. But there is a difference between right and correct.
I wanted to understand these perspectives. Where did they come from? How did they occur? Why was something correct or right? Why did people who spoke certain language think and act very different from people who speak another language?
The words we speak (or are taught) partially make up our worldview - our perspective. I wanted to immerse myself in as many different perspectives as possible; to learn about other perspectives and my own, but also to remind myself that perspective itself is a perspective. To learn the language of languages. Of cognitive mindsetculture based on the communication methods.
This is where I started from. I call them my "armchair curiosities". I'm obsessed with possibilities and the probability of those possibilities. And how people - us humans - interact with technology: creating it, interfacing with it, change it, is changed by it, evolves by/with/because of it. And the future.
I've been pondering going back to school for about a year. But what discipline would I study? (That is the problem with traditional universities - locking you into a field.) I kept coming back to cognitive neuroscience. I'm fascinated with out brains and perception. How we create our world based on accurate (and false) sensory data. But I wasn't satisfied with just that idea. It leaves out my passion for technology.
Then I heard about Singularity University. So I applied. And out of over 1200 applications, I got on the waitlist. For one of 40 spots.
I'm terrified to hear I won't get in (this year). Because I've realized how important this direction is to me. But it's validation enough to be on the waitlist (for now).
This is the direction I most dream and am terrified to go. Straight into the future. To understanding and creating the future. To helping us - people - understand and evolve ourselves - using the best that technology can offer.