Peter Diamandis (@PeterDiamandis) is the founder of the XPRIZE Foundation and co-author of Bold: How to Go Big, Create Wealth and Impact the World and Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You Think.
The Cheat Sheet:
- What does the future hold for human longevity, space colonization, artificial intelligence, and beyond?
- How can we adapt — individually and as a society — to deal with increased automation in the workforce?
- What is linear thinking and why does it cause us to miss the mark when coping with technology, innovation, and the advancement of the human race?
- If you don’t know your calling in life, your calling in life is to discover what that is.
- What experiments can kids curious about science do that won’t get them put on a no-fly list for the foreseeable future?
- And so much more…
Predicting the future is a tricky business. But if you can manage to make it through medical school at your immigrant parents’ behest and still pursue the dream you’ve had of putting people into space ever since you saw Neil Armstrong walk on the moon, you may just have a shot at getting it right.
Peter Diamandis, founder of the XPRIZE Foundation and co-author of Bold: How to Go Big, Create Wealth and Impact the World and Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You Think joins us to talk about what advances and adaptations he thinks humanity can look forward to in the decades and centuries ahead — if we can overcome the hindrance of linear thinking. Listen, learn, and enjoy!
More About This Show
Spending any time perusing social media or news outlets over the course of the day, the world might seem like a pressure cooker of clashing ideologies and “alternative facts” just waiting to boil over and end humanity at any moment if the hype surrounding current events is to be believed. Luckily, optimism has a brainy champion in Peter Diamandis, the XPRIZE Foundation founder and co-author (with previous guest Steven Kotler) of Bold: How to Go Big, Create Wealth and Impact the World and Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You Think.
“We as humans are genetically selected to see the bad news,” says Peter. “And what that means is we see problems way in advance. We see the potential for a problem, and then we make it a real problem, and it could be years or decades before it actually hits us…but the fact of the matter is, even as we go forward in time and we encounter the problem, we forget that there’s been five, ten, twenty years of technological development.”
For example, in the nineteenth century when horse-drawn vehicles were the primary source of transportation, it was hard to see a way out of the problems this caused — mainly piles of disease-carrying horse dung in the streets of cities that were becoming more densely populated. The invention of the automobile was the solution — but a solution that was invisible to those who were making dire predictions for humanity before the fact.
Today, we face environmental crises as a side-effect of burning non-renewable fossil fuels. But Peter — as well as other visionaries like Ray Kurzweil and Elon Musk — believe we’re headed for a solar economy where clean energy will be prevalent, cheap, decentralized, and available to all thanks to as-yet unrealized technology.
“When you look at all of the metrics, we’re living in an amazing world,” says Peter. “Over the last hundred years, the per capita income for every nation on the planet has more than tripled. The human lifespan has more than doubled. The cost of food has dropped thirteenfold. The cost of energy’s dropped thirtyfold. Transportation hundreds-of-fold. Communications millions-of-fold cheaper. Case in point: this podcast!
“Almost every possible, conceivable metric…literacy has exploded around the planet. The cost of access to healthcare has exploded. We romanticize the past and say, ‘Oh, in the good old days…’ but we forget that life back in the good old days was short and brutish and brutal. Eighty-hour workweeks just to survive.”
Now we have machines that toil away those hours without complaint, and further advances in automation will continue this trend. But where does this leave humans? Have we forced ourselves into obsolescence? While Peter says “about half” of our current jobs will be taken over by machines, new jobs — ones of which we can’t yet even conceive — will open up to take their place.
Another positive angle: the jobs machines are taking away from humans tend to be jobs we don’t really want to do anyway. In the current job market, Peter says that “something like seventy percent of Americans” are dissatisfied with what they do to put food on the table. Peter contends that we should hand over the dehumanizing jobs to the machines and give people incentives — like universal basic income — “to do what they love to do.”
Listen to this episode of The Art of Charm in its entirety to learn more about why Peter bets on solar power breakthroughs as our remedy to climate change, why he believes the cost of living is set for a major reduction, how technological unemployment will drive the call for universal basic income, what we pay for today that will be free tomorrow, the future of income equality (the haves and have-nots of today vs. the haves and super-haves of tomorrow), the problems with linear thinking, what it will take to make autonomous cars as ubiquitous as smartphones, what Peter means when he says “mindset is the only restrictor,” and lots more.
THANKS, PETER DIAMANDIS!
If you enjoyed this session with Peter Diamandis, let him know by clicking on the link below and sending him a quick shout out at Twitter:
Resources from This Episode:
- Bold: How to Go Big, Create Wealth and Impact the World by Peter H. Diamandis and Steven Kotler
- Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You Think by Peter H. Diamandis and Steven Kotler
- Singularity University
- Peter Diamandis’ website
- Peter Diamandis at Twitter
- Julian Guthrie | How to Make a Spaceship (Episode 577)
- Steven Kotler | From Sci-Fi to Sci-Fact (Bonus)
- Mike Massimino | Spaceman (Episode 569)
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- The Art of Charm Challenge (click here or text 38470 in the US)
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- Find out more about the team who makes The Art of Charm podcast here!
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