The One Ebook You Have to Read If You Love Digital Books

You have not read a truly digital book until you've read The New World. The novella is about a woman trying to reclaim her dead husband's head from a cult-like cryogenics company. But more than that, it is the most ambitious attempt I've seen at exploring a future where books lack physical form and are better for it. » 3/10/15 2:10pm 3/10/15 2:10pm

The High Tech Farms Where Our Future Food Will Grow in Nothing But Air

If our planet is going to support an extra four billion people by the end of the century, we'll need to find some creative new ways to feed ourselves. One option would be to turn buildings into farms and grow our crops in the air. Another: To install networked food computers in everybody's home. I'm not even kidding. » 3/05/15 11:00am 3/05/15 11:00am

Explore the Dark Future of Cities in These Intense, 5K Animated Shorts

Some of the best science fiction isn't set in space — it's set in an almost-recognizable future, but the near future—the liminal space between present day and a world we can barely imagine. That's the future we see in New City, a series of 5K animations and short stories by the writer and designer Liam Young. » 2/24/15 11:00am 2/24/15 11:00am

The Medical Miracle Headlines of the Future (from 1951)

On January 2, 1951, the Rex Morgan, M.D. comic strip featured a New Year's greeting insisting to readers that time is measured by progress instead of simply by years. And it's not a bad thought! But looking at the "headlines of the future" from 1951, one can't help but be a little bummed out. » 2/19/15 4:41pm 2/19/15 4:41pm

How Asteroid Mining Could Pay for Our First Space Colony

Many of us dream of living on other planets, but are two things we'll need before it can actually happen: money and raw materials. Now some companies say they have a solution to this problem. They'll mine asteroids for valuable metal ores, and for basic resources like water that we'll need once we're far from Earth. » 2/17/15 1:00pm 2/17/15 1:00pm

Get Ready for Oculus Rift to Deliver a "Christian Experience"

While some companies try to cash in with virtual reality porn, others are thinking about saving your soul. Most churches haven't set up outposts in virtual worlds, but some future-focused Christian leaders are already imagining how tech like the Oculus Rift could change what it means to be part of a congregation. » 2/16/15 10:50am 2/16/15 10:50am

11 Ways The Future Could Turn Out Differently Than You Expect

Many of us, owing to an intuitive sense of where technological and social progress are taking us, have a preconceived notion of what the future will look like. But as history has continually shown, the future doesn't always go according to plan. Here are 11 ways the world of tomorrow may not unfold the way we expect. » 1/29/15 3:36pm 1/29/15 3:36pm

After Earth Falls, Will Interstellar Space Travel Be Our Salvation?

18

It may be just a matter of time before the Earth becomes uninhabitable. As astrophysicists and avid science fiction fans, we naturally find the prospect of interstellar colonization intriguing and exciting. But is it practical, or even possible? Or is there a better solution? » 1/23/15 10:23pm 1/23/15 10:23pm

If Your Robot Buys Illegal Drugs, Have You Committed a Crime?

A group of Swiss artists recently set a bot free on the darknet, allowing it to purchase whatever it could with Bitcoins. Among other weird things it bought were a few ecstasy pills and a fake Hungarian passport. Now an attorney asks whether the artists could be arrested under the law as it currently stands. » 1/03/15 8:59am 1/03/15 8:59am

The Most Futuristic Predictions That Came True In 2014

As 2014 comes to a close, it's time to reflect on the most futuristic breakthroughs and developments of the past year. This year's crop features a slew of incredible technological, scientific, and social achievements, from mind-to-mind communication to self-guiding sniper bullets. Here are 15 predictions that came… » 12/29/14 3:58pm 12/29/14 3:58pm

How Neal Stephenson Is Helping To Make Snow Crash's Metaverse A Reality

Magic Leap's mysterious augmented reality tech promises to "bring magic back into the world." And now Neal Stephenson, who imagined the virtual Metaverse in his 1992 novel Snow Crash, has joined the company. He tells io9 why this technology may "demand a new way of thinking." » 12/16/14 1:37pm 12/16/14 1:37pm

These are NASA's coolest and strangest airplanes of the future

Most people don't know this, but NASA doesn't only work in exploring space. Its contribution to airplane technology—National Aeronautics and Space Administration—has been crucial to the development of safer, faster, more efficient travel. These are their coolest future concepts—some of which could enter service as… » 12/08/14 7:17pm 12/08/14 7:17pm

Why tracking our lives may be key in the next step of human evolution

Our friend Jason Silva gives an interesting argument in this video: Rather than thinking that tracking ourselves—geographically and biologically—will inevitably result in our individual alienation and the ultimate slaving of humanity, he believes that it would help each and everyone of us to realize our full potential. » 12/02/14 9:29pm 12/02/14 9:29pm