Futures Design Thinking - a new toolkit for preemptive design
Thank. You all for joining us really excited to see, so many folks here and excited. To kick off the new year with. A very. Forward-looking. Topic, I first. Reached out to Phil when. I learned, about his primer conference, and I was so, intrigued by the concept of, speculative. Design that. I wanted, to bring him here to learn more Phil, founded. The design. Futures, initiative which, is a nonprofit organization that. Organizes. Meetups. Internationally. Around the world for speculative, futures and also. Organizes. The primer conference, which. I'm very interested, in excited, in, myself and he'll, be hosting it in New York this year in. Addition to being a futurist Phil, is also an educator, he. Has run. Workshops. Around. Speculative. Design and digital transformation. Around the world, currently. He's an experienced. Design manager. Director. So our experienced design director at McKenzie. And, prior to that he led a team of designers at. GE Aviation, working, on software, for, Airlines, as well as the industrial. Internet. Of Things. So, with that I'd like to ask, you to welcome, Phil bollocked. US for. Design, is speculative, thank. You. Thank. You okay thanks, Google. For having me here I'm. Going to talk to you about speculative, design, said, yeah my day job is I am an experienced design director at McKinsey doing. A lot of different work going. To talk a little bit about my. Journey and I, think speculative, design is best explained, through examples. I've. I've, tried to define it many ways a lot of people have tried to define it I think there's a lot of different. Terms out there but if you google speculative, design you might find critical design as well but, for all intensive purposes in, this talk we are we're not trying to displace any specific, term we're just trying to give it a nice umbrella so we can have a. Point of reference who. Has actually heard of speculative design before oh. This. Probably the most people that I've, seen that have actually raised their hand there, are several. Different terms that might come up design fiction, discursive. Design interrogative design a bracero design again. Just, for this we're. Just going to talk, about speculative, design because all of it is sort of speculating, on something, and we. Are gonna be talking a lot about the future everyone, loves, to talk about the future right so, this is a definition. One, of many that I've put together for it it's a way to manifest, possibilities. And that can come in a number of different ways you can manifest it in stories, in. Artifacts, and scenarios, and environments to, prepare, us for inconvenient. Challenges, and facilitate. A more desirable, responsible, path into the future not. Just the challenges, but also the opportunities of, the future brings so, here's a nice little diagram I think this has been refined, over, the last year so colleague. Of mine Eliot P Montgomery who is a professor, at Parsons, The New School has. Tried to map out so that as, it's noted there and very fine print the, scale of the circle doesn't necessarily indicate significance. Or the size of the field or the size of the communities just, trying to put all, these different terms on the map you see that science, fiction is on here future studies strategy.
Design, Thinking design. Itself and then, specular, design is sort of in there as well here's, another bubble. Diagram I found today so there's another organization. Called, speculative, edu, and they. Ran a analysis. Of. Hashtags. That are being put in posts, in social media and that. We're really the specular design so there's a lot of different topics and industries, that are talking, about this. Term this field is methodology, not, quite short in mind F hack is but that that seems to have a pretty, prominent. Bubble in this chart so, we don't like to call ourselves fortune. Tellers or predictors, of the future we. Do like to have some sort of foresight to understand, what the future challenges. Are but. When you think about the future we. Don't like to think of it as a straight line we. Like to think of as possibilities, or alternate, futures, we always talk about futures, because. There are many possibilities. You. Can think of it sort of like a cone, this. Is, a pretty, popular diagram, and when we teach. People. About futures this is when we sort of start with to kind of get a baseline, perspective, how to look into, the future so. Everything. Kind of lies within the cone of possibilities. Right the things that lie outside of the cone at this point right now based. On your time frame might be things like, teleportation. Or lightsabers, that, kind of thing as you, get closer into. The center of the cone you get into the more plausible and then. The more probable, what's, likely to happen things we're pretty sure are going to happen so. Just take a topic a popular topic such as AI we know AI will continue, to develop it'll, get smarter it'll, get faster, maybe, add some quantum quantum, computing on top of that it'll get even faster, and then, there's what could happen within the plausible, and then again the possible so that just sets the framework that there are many different ways that that. Time, and events and trends we sometimes call them signals can play out and. This. Sets the basis for we want to experiment understand. Things. So. The really interesting. Areas. That we can explore are sort of on that realm, on. The outer realm of possibility. Things where we want to kind of install. Imagination. Look, at impacts, and implications. What's. The knock-on effect of this design response, in the future what could happen, right what. Might happen and, I think this is a very relevant, topic today especially with all of the questions, around privacy and data how. Could things break of. Course you can imagine the, future and all those implication it could be quite large so. We have to start to try and investigate. And see what we want to actually care about and this is sort of part of our mission, so. Again I'm going to show you a range of examples a lot of videos as well to, try and explain some. Of the different ways people have tried to access. And investigate this topic I'll, start with one of my favorites, this is by Anthony. Diamond Fiona ray beam I think, this project is from.
2007. Maybe so, the project is called design for an overpopulated. Planet, foragers the. Signal is that, the United, Nations says the next 40 years we. Will have to produce 70 percent more food 40. Years does seem like a long long. But think, about how much food that is that's. Not just food for us that's, water. That's you. Know plants, that's animals, that's a lot of food for an overpopulation, so given that as you're launching, point. What. Might that feature look like well, this is one response, and you. Can you can unpack this in many different ways. What. Would be as a society, might be might. Have to be determined to do in that world. How. Might we if we were able to let's just take a technology harness. Chemical. Biology the chemical crosses that animals use to extract nutrients from soil air, water. And, encapsulate. That into some kind of machine. Could. There be some sub society that would actually roam the land foraged land and actually, extract nutrients, much like animals do what would the form look like, with. A mimic, animals, and, so. This project again these, were just fabricated. Objects. Meant, to be a critical, investigation, around, you. Know that issue and then. Also form and function and it. Presents more and more questions around what's. The world going. To be like and what will we have to do to, address it and compromise. Object. Solutions did a an. Exhibit, with MIT Media, Lab so this one is called love optimized, that. Was the name of the exhibit this projects called neural line so just imagine if you were sleeping. Soundly, on your first day to dinner and these. Diodes. Were sending. Impulses, between you and your partner and trying to sync them with to. See if you were actually you, know compatible. With your partner. The. Intimated some intimate, utility, meter so smart. Homes are becoming more prevalent so what if we had a smart meter that. Only delivered. Services to your home based on the. The, connection your relationship, so if you're you, know having a great relationship you're, very connected to your partner spending, a lot of time with them great you have all of your you. Have all of your t utilities but if that starts to fail and the home notices that you're not spending as much time it. Starts to turn off, and. Again this is just a picture. But it starts to present another way of looking at how things could play out and some, of them you know they're, a little bit more tongue-in-cheek, but. Again presenting. More questions. Another. Graduate, from the, Royal College of Art which is where Dondre be we're teaching critical design is Joseph popper a very, interesting investigation, and this was called one-way ticket, he built this entire. Capsule. Basically, out, of wood and cardboard cardboard, styrofoam, and his question was what if you had to send a human, on a one-way ticket out into space you. Can imagine the questions around, what a human would have to go through aboard. That vessel what. Are the challenges not, only from, you. Know the logistics you. Get there but the food you eat the psychological. Challenges. You would have all of those things and start to investigate you know the human psyche at that point, not. Too different from what we're trying to do with Mars, Elon. Musk says that to, be part of the Mars one mission or, to send humans, to Mars you, have to be willing to, accept. That this is a one-way ticket to Mars so. What, if we do get there what, are we going to do of. Course a lot of, study. And research is going into how we're actually gonna survive. Terraform. But. What else so. Carlos, mentally on long Leone gendell did, a project called Martian wine and, it. Was really around understanding if we could actually, grow. Or have wine on Mars so. He actually did a an. Experiment, looking at Martian soil and emulating, it and you can actually do this because if you there's. A process called carbonic maceration if. You actually take grapes and expose. Them to a lot of carbon dioxide and, pressure they, actually ferment from the inside out so he, looked at the soil composition of Mars and created these bosses. Based, on that by the way if you notice it says Mars. Atmosphere. Is 95%, carbon, dioxide, and only. 0.3 percent oxygen so that's you know why, might not be the first thing that we're looking for there but it you, know I'm, not even sure why we're going there.
But. If we to get there we could actually make. Some wine these are the vessels that he created. Again. You know there's a number of things that you could start to look, at. As far as living on another planet. One, might be just too how. Do you bathe yourself now of, course we might actually have a bathtub but the, astronaut. Scott kelly said once he finished, his one-year mission on, the ISS, there's nothing. Personally. I've, learned nothing that nothing feels this amazing is water so. This was just Kristine, Lou she's a student, of Central, Saint Martin's was, looking at now, iDevices but you know how you might actually bathe yourself I think I'm the left is, the, actual bathing unit the other one is a drying unit of getting that out now, there's, probably a lot more science that's involved around like being yourself on Mars but, again looking at other aspects, of it, what's. Everyday, life on. Another planet. Aggie, Haynes she's. One of my favorite. Designers she's very interested in the body and manipulating, the body so. We can do this today right, and usually. It's for vanity, you know it's called plastic surgery. So. You can imagine and, in. A world where in a world where. Climate, change is a, serious, serious issue which it is still today but. The temperatures, are around, the planet are much higher could, we would, we modify our children, it's. Actually in that environment how would, we do it and. You. Know what are the ethics around that so. You can see the flaps in this and the this is not a real baby this is a model, the. Flaps in the skin it's sort of like a heat-seeking computer, the more surface area there is the more that the you, know the heat can escape so. This child is actually designed to live in hotter temperatures, and work longer hours. Alexandra. Daisy Ginsburg also, looking at bacteria she. Was working with I think also Central Saint Martin's looking. At how to program. Bacteria, on the. Left is a cup, glass made of keratin do you guys know keratin is. Anyone. It's. The protein, in your hair your skin and nails gives it strength and structure that's. A glass made of keratin so there's a number of questions not just like would you actually sell this at Target. Or Home Depot but. It. These could be keratin. Made from another, human being your family member on. The right a police, sensing lung tumor so. Taken. From a pathology, of a heavy lung smoker, and glass. Fabricating. Bacteria I don't know if that parts real but. The idea is that it would turn red and turn colors change colors based on if it's, exposed, to a lot of toxic. Gases it's. Beautiful, right there is there's actually the form and function of it and then there's also the, utility, of using this and in emergency. Situations, also. She. Also did another project called eco Maya and this is the video I show you as. Designers, we worked with the team to explore has potential, as they were developing in the lab and together, we imagined the timeline, proposing, ways that living color could evolve over the next century the, Samari. Is some of which are shown in this film, all the different agendas that could she be revised use and in turn our everyday lives. One. Of the first real applications, for this technology may arrive quite soon a cheap. Disposable by, a sensor testing ground water contaminated. By arsenic. Bacteria. Could also be used to produce natural colorings, and dyes by. 2015. There may be a profession, of people who hunt for new pigments, and the genes responsible bringing. Them back fees and the food and textile, industry. By. Twenty thirty nine you can go to the supermarket and buy the simple, probiotic, yogurt for cheap personalized, disease monitoring. The. Yogurt drink contains eco my bacteria, which established, a colony in your gut, they. Monitor for chemical signals that indicate the presence of a wide range of diseases if. They detect a disease they start generating the corresponding, colored pigment producing. An easily visible output to promptly to seek your doctor. Design. Can set agendas, again this was real technology, that she was working with but you can see how she started to project it over. Time and try to understand what are the implications I, think if you watch that video further, along it talks about these subcultures and other. Organizations, that start to riot and question. Like what are we doing we're farming too much of this and you, know it, you know we don't tend, to look past ten years because, after ten years it gets a little bit fuzzy and blurry of what really is going to happen but that's, usually a nice time. Horizon, for us to try and speculate. On these different you. Know effects so. We can set you can set agendas, with these scenarios. Stories. Or you, know scientific, investigations. Of how, to. Explore, our world and how it could be and start, to set policies. I really. Believe in this that this is a type, of thinking.
That We can actually start design, new, policies, based on you, know what, we're experiencing today we're, trying to get out of the reactive, state of designing, even though you know we're with agile. Software I throw it over the fence and see, if it breaks and then fix it you, know that seems to work very well you, you it's, very effective with making products that people love but. There's, a lot of other, emerging, technologies, that can actually be very dangerous to us and be. Very life threatening here's. A project 23andme. And Lexus are we're working on. You. There. Are billions of you. But. There is only one you. So. What if selecting, your next vehicle focused, on what truly matters, you. Introducing. Genetics. Select by Lexus, the world's first service, that uses human genetics, to match you with a car of your genes. Through. A partnership with 23andme. Using. Their proprietary DNA. Genotyping. One. Small saliva sample, will unlock your DNA. Telling. Us where you're from, where. You're going, and now. How. You're going to get there. Within. 48, hours you're handcrafted, Lexus will be delivered to your driveway. Based. On your chromosomes, everything. From the model styling. And performance, capabilities, will, be crafted, exclusively. For you inspired. By your favorite scent a genetically. Personalized, new car smell if, your DNA markers reveal a susceptibility, to freckling, protective. UV tinting. Even. An enhanced, windshield, matched to your personal, prescription. Genetically. Predisposed, to high caffeine consumption, enlarged. Cupholders, and. Best. Of all, operating. Your vehicle. No. Longer requires. A perfect. Driving experience, is in our DNA because. It's also in yours. Experience. Craftsmanship. At the genetic, level experience. Amazing. David. She couldn't you know get serious about I have have trouble, holding a straight face when I share that video. But. Again videos, or vision, videos are really good platform, to, tell these stories so. Getting, a little bit more serious we. There. Is a project that the the UK government. Conducted. Back in 2015 called, the future of aging and so it's a very dense, study and and you, can find it online find the report online but they did a series of workshops, across different. Cities in the UK trying, to understand what. Services. Public. Or private might, people, need in the next 30 years and, they presented them with a number of different scenarios so I'm just kind of showing the pictures of what the future might look like and getting, them to react you know how would they feel about it what are their needs so they're because some government services are actually a really great place to practice by co.design because sometimes it takes a long time for it to develop and rollout and there's a lot of different factors, economically. Culturally that, you have to be very sensitive to and. You can actually create that longer time horizon. And. This is a quote from the project's the design fictions enable form of storytelling that allow us to imagine unrealized, objects, and use also. Providing alternate value systems, for designers and attention and potentially, policy, makers so this was again at. The time they said there's one of the first times that the government had. Actually sought out speculative, design practice. To try and conduct these these experiments, these. Are some of the pictures I'm sorry they're a little bit low res but. You can see the top it's, a public. Versus, a private scenario, it's the same scenario beginning, start to see that there's a couple things that are very different any one point out some. Of the differences. Just. Call it out. The. Parking lot. Yes. It might be kind of hard to see it but yeah the parking lot very good is Facebook. You. Can you see the signs on the the, river canal, one. Is sort of signage, and the other one is sort of an advertisement, so, again it was to kind of provoke, public, opinion, or on like what kind of services would you like would it be okay for you to take, a bus run by Facebook, a private, service service, versus a government, public service and of, course you know the opinions were sort of across the board thinking, the privatized companies were tried to take advantage and raise, prices and.
But, They would be on time as opposed, to the government-run services. You can't and the bottom left you can see this store says Greene & Sons & Sons noting. The multi-generational. Institution. Here of robot. Repair and again. They just presented this and try to understand, this, is a potential, service that will exist in the future how do you feel about that and they, came up with a giant, map of, responses. That, really looked into number. Different dimensions, working lives lifelong. Learning housing, and neighborhoods, central. Role for families, health. Care systems and physical, social and technological community. Again. Trying to use these as launching points of like what are the first things that we should start to develop that society. At this age will probably be you know more comfortable with as they grow but, again an investigation. In one point a time that, they have to continue to investigate, as things, change and they can start to divert again. Design system designs can set agendas, if you really want to try. And avert the agenda, or lean. It towards one, thing or another you. Can start by looking and something like this so. In Dubai Dubai, of course is a very interesting. Place again, a city built in the middle of desert desert, started. From oil, money right in the 70s, but they knew back. Then that the oil probably, would run out at some point Dubai. Is now a very, international. Business, hub connecting. The East in the West and they've, grown quite. A bit but again always been sort, of future, and forward-thinking tried, to understand sustainability and, so they're doing a pretty good job they're, also investigating. A lot of things a lot of emerging technologies so this is a an exhibit, by, till, art until, our had a major contribution, to it and gentleman. Over here Christian Irvin. Who actually works, for Google had, a huge. Part. In creating. This exhibit it's about they, started think it 2014, or 2015, and. It was an annual exhibition, just. To showcase emerging, technologies, create, an immersive environment, of the future and see you, know and inviting, the public to come in and incite the public opinion again same, as government at UK to. Try and figure out like is this, the feature you want. Is. There anything that we're missing, they had automatic, our prototyping. Lab where, if you don't have to drive the car what. Else would you you, know what to do in this vehicle they had like an office car an, exercise, car with a bike a lot, of different things and since. Then there is now a permanent. Installation, of, the, Museum of the future a permanent. Organization. Part, of the Dubai government it's, called a future Dubai future, foundation, some. Like that and and, so they're constantly looking at emerging. Technologies, and try diffic the first 3d printed office is there but. This is a really great exhibition, I think this this is from, 2017. And again. Immersive, some, of the first ones it used to be called a feature of government, services, where that Street that I showed you earlier was, literally Street with like robot. Drone construction, drones. Augmented. Reality and, this. Is just a tour of this. Is the a, food. Prototyping. Lab where. It would actually create food based on your your. Body's, body's. Needs. Brain. Augmentation. Exoskeletons. And these were just devices, so again these are actually real. Plausible. Devices. That could. Actually come to fruition a. City. Kit self building building, this. Machine this autonomous machine would go out and actually use the materials, around it to rebuild, roads or build new buildings, and this. Is my favorite one it's called mood view have. You ever wondered what people really think about you have. You ever had trouble convincing, people of your ideas, well. Despair. No more, introducing. Mood, the, most advanced social intelligence product, on the market, mood.
Views Sensitive, facial micro expression recognition, reveals, people's, subconscious, feelings and attitudes in real-time, the. Mood view social coach, then draws from a databank of over 450 trillion, social, interactions, to suggest the best way to respond. Thanks. To mood view you can read people like an open book and be sure that you say the right thing at the right time every. Time move. View see. How people really feel you. Will not be held responsible for an over proliferation, of friends or increased we're closed due to newfound business opportunities, mood news microexpression data bank brought to you by the UAE hyper mine so, they're not all like that there's, a lot of very not that ones not serious but there's a lot of very serious, technology. Propositions. For you in this in this environment this is what it's going to look like when it's finally finished a beautiful, beautiful building, they're, putting a lot of work into it I, hope, to visit it some someday so. At, the time I, was so, fascinated by this project, no way because there's a government instituted. Project, but just like that the whole platform of it you know you create this massive, immersive, experience, you invite people in get, the reactions, like okay so what now what, actually happens and so I contacted the then strategy, directors name is Andrew Harris ager and I was like you know this is great, you, know this design the design fictions, you created are amazing, and he said you know these the. Word fiction, he said the prototypes aren't based on fictitious, realities, they're. Based on real provable, drivers and trends moved, on predictable, ways of course no one can no, one knows will happen in the future but, this process hinges on the most plausible future based on rigorous research and study so, sometimes you look at these projects, and they just kind of feel like oh that's just kind of a funny way of looking at the future but, if you just look at move you it's based on a lot of technology that it's actually very available today right. The only thing it's missing is like the contact lens so we're you can do that but you could imagine yourself, holding up a phone and doing, facial recognition and our same people's moods it's happening. Today but, at the time it felt you know like it was sort, of science fiction so, a lot of the work that's there is not just imagined, though their partner is a dimension, of dreaming, of the future it is based on real research and this is really what we tried push that. It's not just you, know.
Imagination. So. This, work is being. Used that a lot of corporations some. Of the earliest. Examples. Of this was Apple has. Anyone seen knowledge navigator. Great. I learned about this in grad school and it's totally fascinating about I, just, played a little bit video this is a vision video. In. Robert. Jordan a second semester junior requesting, a second extension on his term paper. And. Your mother reminding, you about your father's surprise birthday party, next Sunday. Today. You have a faculty lunch at 12 o'clock, you. Need to take Kathy to the airport by 2:00. You. Have a lecture at 4:15. On deforestation, in the Amazon rainforest, right. The. Lecture notes from last semester. No. That's not enough I need, to review more recent literature pull, up all the new articles I haven't read yet journal. Articles only. Fine. Your, friend Jill Gilbert has published an article about, deforestation. In the Amazon. From. That video can you identify a couple of things. That exist today just. Raise your hand. Sorry. Alexa. Someone, else said, tablet. Anything. Else what. What was what did not exist in 1987. I'll probably a very key technology, for this to actually be real. Search. Engine yes, what else, voice. Recognition yes, Siri. How. Did screech which I think the little guy looks like screech. How. Does what, does he do. Internet. Where. Does where was the internet in 1987. Now. What what, point of it was it in development, was, it commercially available No. Was, any of this commercially, available. I think, the foundations. For this technology, did, exist and they, were looking into it but it took them about 20 years to create the iPad maybe. Longer than that's due Siri and. So. You can start to see how they just looked at trends and signals today emerging, technologies, and push. Them out and how could they all come together it's create an experience and this. Is you know again, vision videos are, very. Effective, in that way and I don't know I don't I don't work at Apple and I've never seen you know the ARD room but this may have been in different formats. Or forms part, of the roadmap of can we get to the knowledge navigator I think it came out at one point and there, was sort of a tablet, that came out but failed but. They. Eventually got there I was, sort of on the fence about showing this one because we are Google has, anyone seen the. Google selfish, ledger, Wow. Oh these two guys, oh it just so happens that this gentleman is, one. Of the people who actually helped put together so I'm not going to set this up for you but this was a video that was meant to be internal it was. A speculative, design design. Fiction piece. I'll. Just let you watch. As. This line of thinking accelerates, and the notion of a goal driven ledger becomes more palatable. Suggestions. May be converted not by the user but, by the ledger itself, in. This case the ledger is missing a key data source which it requires in order to better understand, this user in. Order to plug the gap in its knowledge the, ledger begins searching for a device which, delivers, the required data when used. From. This list the ledger begins sorting, the options most likely to appeal to the user in question. In. Situations, where no suitable product is found the, ledger may investigate a bespoke, solution.
By. Analyzing, historical, data it, is increasingly, possible to discern qualitative. Information such. As taste and aesthetic, sensibility, which, may be used in the creation of a design proposal. So. If you didn't get it the system. The ledger didn't, know something about the, user what was that. Wait. And so what did it do it. Tried, to build a scale based on the user's preferences, right, and so, again this this video got a lot, of attention because it leaked and a, lot of criticism, and a lot of debate. Around what Google was really trying to do it's, speculative, completely, speculative, around, and it, wasn't all creepy. Though. Some people thought it was so. Again what do we have to do to consider. Design, for the future and I'm gonna chair a couple of very very basic frameworks to get started be sure the features Kohner lee ER and then, here's something i like to call a retro casting, and didn't, come up with this term but it's sort of a combination, of back casting, which i'll show you later and also just looking into the past to. Understand how the future could play out here, is just a basic timeline, with some key technologies in, 1998, Google. Arrived, 2007. The smartphone, sharing, economy, VR does, anyone know what the little globe, is not the not the Watson one but the one beneath Alexa. Quantum. Computing if you're not familiar with quantum computing look it up it's I I think, there's a lot of promise in quantum computing it's very very hard to do but, it can if once, it comes to maturity can. Do wonders. With the way we process information, so. In that amount of time a lot of cultural shifts, has happened if you understand more Law Lord. Accelerating, change which. Was based on just the number of the, the size of a transmen, transistor, you can put on a microchip, and that, it would just the. Speed would double but the size would also shrink, so, if you apply, that to how technology's affected Society we've shifted the, way we do things do you remember the last time you had to remember a seven digit phone number, right. Like we rely so much so the cognitive load that's just one example of the things now think about autonomous, cars what other cognitive, loads, are we going to you know offload onto some other technology, and forget I have a really hard time like. With cursive, just handwriting because I'm always typing, and it's weird like unlearning. That I used to be very good but now I'm like it feels. Very strange so. In, the last 20 years if you need to think of that apply Moore's Law and think about what could happen and in, the future in. The. Next 10 years there's gonna be the massive change and this is just sort of a rough estimation, that the amount of change technologically. Economically. Culturally, can. Actually accelerate also, and so from. 1998. If you remember how things were then it's. Going to be like that and the next that that massive shift can happen in a much shorter period, of time now. Futurists. Are also a, part of this community and people who have been doing this for many many years looking, at strategies understanding, economic. Trends and how businesses, should should, shape their strategy they, have a lot of frameworks as well there's. A book called Think Like a futurist, that talks, about the forces of change if you think about the, resources, so even if you just think about like early man resources, were like fire and rocks, and and, then and then there's technology, which is like the tools that created that the demographics. Are the people that manage, those tools and then the governments around that any, changes, and any of these dimensions can, start to shift how things go how. Technology. Is actually funded, and how, it actually evolves. And then, the people and it's this whole pyramid, now, there's a lot again a lot of different factors to look at but, if you look at those trends and signals you can start to see start. To kind of shape a picture of what the future might be like so. Back casting is also a very simple framework. Look. At the future we do this a lot. At. My, company and other companies I've been at and it, it's. Just like road mapping right do we want to go and then you back cast, into, the president around what's what's, what are the key milestones and, elements that need to be true, for, this feature to arrive and then, you can actually add that futurist.
Framework. On top of that and say like okay what's, the world gonna be like and how do we have to shift that to, get to that future, apply. That on top of the. Futures, Conal so you can sort of seed multiple futures now. That product, or that idea or, that future. Doesn't live in a vacuum right, just like things. Are very different today than they were 20. Years ago right, think, about everything, that's different today the policies, the, political, climate the environmental, climate, ethics. All of these things that are very different in today's world are there. Things. That we need to consider and there is a reciprocal. Relationship. Between all of that for those things to be real but. Again so you can look at multiple futures, what's. The future we want what's the future we don't want and how do we want to navigate that path to. Avert our selves from the things we don't want or, change, policy, so, it becomes the things that we want because. Some things are, imminent, and they're. Going to arrive and we're going to have to deal with them, so. Speculate. The ecosystems, what does it feel like where, the challenges, in rules the states of the world and technology, and start, to determine the social and cultural implications what, impact, will we as designers our role have on society not. Just the product but where will we be we. We be the policymakers, will we be defining, ethics and how, does it change our behavior, socially. Psychologically all, those, things you don't normally think about but now we're starting to deal with now. We're starting to understand, we. Can understand the world today and see how humans, might accept, that in the future yes. There will be a world will be different and they might accept it differently but we are animals, and there's. Some things you can't predict some. Things you can't, another. Very basic. Framework is called the futures wheel so take anything put it in the center my. Robotics, synthetic, biology, cellular, agriculture, and, think. About the direct implications. Direct. Implications, of autonomous car we, don't have to really think about driving anymore less. Acts. We, don't like to think of like what's the product in the future and when, we think about the feature typically, as we see them a lot of workshops we do is people, just think about mobile phones they're.
Smaller And faster and they're you're in your head or they're your eye or we're connected, via, this and that but. Yeah, that's just the product what. Does it actually do to us and should, we go there so. This is a workshop, that I participated. In run, by the near-future labs and really. Great workshop so. We basically entered and there were all of these news. Articles from the future and I think at the time there was a drought in California, so there's a few about the drought and they. Asked us to create a QuickStart guide for an autonomous car so just like your Fitbit you're gonna have like potentially. Like the pamphlet that's like how do you get started what happens if there's an emergency, where you know what happens if you leave your kid in the car and, we. Were forced, to think about all of these implications. Who. Manages the insurance, what's the policy around data this thing's gonna be connected to the Internet probably you, know what happens if it kills someone. It's. All these things and this was just one of the pages you can find this book on, their, website this is like child safe mode so yeah, if you leave your child in the car is there a button that you can press on a remote and you. Know what does it do does it turn around or what if you're you fall asleep and you you, end up like in the ocean or like in a very bad neighborhood, like where do you what do you do where do you go or if you lose control of the car so. Very, good experiment. And looking at just. The implications of autonomous cars because. In March very. Famous. Ride-sharing. Company, actually had their first fatality in Tempe Arizona so. This is a Volvo, that was modified it was an autonomous car there was a driver who. Was actually watching Hulu the. Volvo. Itself had sensors, in it that identified, an object an obstacle in the road but. It had been deactivated, based because, of, this. Other company's, technology that. Had taken over they actually deactivated, it so, it did see that there was a person, that was crossing it, did not react in time and, there. Was a fatality, it's. Bound to happen there, are many things again that are imminent and I'm pretty sure they did not plan for this to happen they, planned they. Looked at every single possibility, and. They. Tried to you know keep this from happening but now they're going back to the drawing board and, gonna have to work it out they. Will have to and we. Will all have to think of these things as these things start to propagate, throughout the world, so advocating, for our future design thinking is very difficult we get a lot of these questions of like how do we bring this back to their practice, awesome. Yeah we should be thinking about ethics how, do I tell my CEO. Or my product manager that this is something that we should be building into our design process and. You. Know it's something we should care about and so. The example I like to give is I used to work for GE aviation, and this. Is a test cell it, takes about ten years for that jet, engine to actually roll off the line from concept, to actually like being deployed on an aircraft a lot, of that time is being tested you, put it through the test cell we, throw rocks at it snow. Ice. They're. Actually frozen birds which, I think were so, I don't think they murder the birds but they're there they, throw, foul, basically. In it to see what happens if there's a bird strike which is a very real. Problem. To. See if a fan blade breaks, off and and, see, if we can design so that blade doesn't actually hit the fuselage, and you know do more damage we, have to do this because it's risk aversion there's. A lot of technology you're working on now it's not necessarily, the jet engine which by the way is one of the things along with physics that keeps the plane in the air there, and there's a lot of Technology working on today that could be you, know that deserved this type of risk aversion, investigation. These. Are just some sort of some principles, if this, could be used for design thinking you. Know any sort of new methodology, new way of thinking want to bring back to your company you, have to understand your company's values, what do they care about so with Airlines they cared about tickets, and butts and seats so, we tried, to anchor. It around what they believe is like people who, are buying their tickets now. That we're designing for those people in the future what about all the infrastructure, and systems and all of the different, ethical challenges around privacy.
And. You. Know connect using their data for other things to. Sell the more tickets if that's, the step that you have to take to get them to listen then, that's fine. Find. Something they really care about and then, create, champions, make sure they care and they could be a number of small experiments, or vision videos or whatever it might be to, help create a new agenda for that company, new. Agenda for your boss. Hidden impact influence, in ecosystems, so these are the things that we want to think about when we're sort of, evangelizing. This what, is the hidden impact of this product what are the influences and where the ecosystems. That we're going to have to live in there, are of course I'm talking about a lot of negative, things a lot of risks but there's also opportunities. In the future and this, is one of the things that, we're really focusing, on as our mission so. Like. I said I am the. President founder of the design features initiative, we have three. Products really there's sort of the primer conference, so we first started with a speculative features meetup which we start, in 2015, we. Are we started in San Francisco and, now we are in 25, cities and then. The primer conference was meant to be the annual conference for the meetup and we, are in our third year, 4,000, plus members at in May we were five chapters, today, we're 25, going. On 28 we're. All across the world there's been this massive organic. Response to to, this kind of thinking and everyone. Is just kind of jumping up and we are inviting futurists, and science fiction authors and strategic foresight, practitioners, and business strategists, to come and have this conversation and, to just get involved into this course of really thinking about the future and primer. Is meant to be sort of the conference, where we gather everyone, and we primed them for the challenges in the opportunities of future so. This is in New York next year we've, got a really great lineup Paola Antonelli is going to be speaking and a few others will. Be releasing the speakers pretty soon we, have au conference.
Which Just started last last. Year so, we're we're. Not quite sure what we're doing with primer we're just helping, it organically. Grow we don't know if there will be a primer China we're, just letting the community pull, us pull us in, that direction the. Third product really is what we're doing at the dfi, running. Workshops doing, the meetups this, this was a lab that we did where. We had six, SMEs, subject. Matter experts from different different, Sciences so biotech. Pharmacology. Genoa. Plant, genomics, and we pair them up with designers, we said think about the future of disease this. Is a project called you know me they, looked at these three signals plant genomics biosensing, machine learning and they, went to the kitchen and they built this thing, and you. Basically give it your blood it analyzes, your health needs and gross medicinal, fruit I thought, it was very beautiful, literally. Made of plastic, pulled out of the kitchen but there's a mobile interface on there again they they really they believe, that a mobile interface was gonna be the way to to, connect to it we. Do some light assistive. Consulting, we worked with Smith group jjr and helped them create a Charette looking at the feature of AI driven, health clinics so this was pods a personal, on-demand. Service, where if you didn't have any humans, you. Know what would that clinic look like would you just sit and it would analyze you and there was a number of different responses. That came out of that we also helped some students this, is uh she, Han Zhang she. Is a graduate. Of CCA. Telford. And College of the Arts this, is a really great project, so she's from Shanghai where. Of course there's a lot of pollution and she was really looking at how, could you take, that carbon and monetize, it and commodify, it back, into a new economy and she, came up with a number of different responses, this, is an algae suit made. By Chanel I think the Chanel, logo in there somewhere for, skin farming for. Some of the hipsters there's mr. beard there's, a mas the mas beard collection, the. World carbon bank connects you to Carbon Pickers all around the world, you, can browse their personal profiles, including, carbon offset stories locations. And stalked analytics, to, plan and decide your carbon purchases, for. Example, you, may want to buy from the Indonesian farmers, who operate, oxygen, forms instead. Of running palm oil tree farms which destroyed, the forest and release tons of carbons back into the air or, you, can purchase your credits from a dairy cow farmer, in California, who collects methane directly, from their cows by, integrating, the collection, system, with existing milking, stations, you, can also buy credits, from Pacific climate refugees, who run their carbon pancake truck in Sydney.
The Use sodium carbonate, to absorb, co2 from, the air which, turns into baking, soda for pancakes, it's a really great project personal, carbon economy calm okay, so I'm really excited to tell you about this next. Project so in last. Year we were trying to expand EFI so until then it was just like events, that we are doing and, we really want to create more program, do more workshops so we, engaged with the Boys and Girls Club of San Francisco, and literally. I walked in there with some leftover catering, stuff from primer and I was like can you guys use this I just want to donate it and I, brought to them this idea that. I want to work with kids and the. Hypothesis. Was what if we use futures frameworks, the futures cone those kind of, methods. To, help youth identify life, career and social challenges and design a better life, pathway, I wasn't, interested in helping, these. Children design. New products so that's that's probably a fun experiment for them but, we're trying to see if we can kind of appropriate, the methodology, to help them like find, challenges. So Boys and Girls Club if you're not familiar with them they deal with a lot of at-risk youth so. We, tried to figure out what demo what age did we want to work with and everyone kept telling us middle, school was probably good when, you're in high school a little bit distracted. With you. Know you, know puberty, and all those things that you get distracted with when you're young adults and so we ran the first workshop and we said you know if you had all the money in the world what, would you solve, and this one, students. Said I would solve the problem of racism because not fair it's very difficult for, me it was very difficult to, work with this child because I just didn't know what to say to them because, you can be so so, impression, about on children at that age and I, was just like I was stunned about. Just. How affected they were but the one thing we we did discover is that they. Are affected, but they didn't know how to articulate, why, or how or what to do about it they, sort of associate, themselves with the adults, that they that they you, know their parents and so, they didn't have any sort of problem framing. Capacity. Not capacity but I just didn't know how to frame the problem and, and, and, synthesize. There around it so, we, came, up with a program, to kind of start with Design Thinking principles. How do you identify. The problem unpack, it and then figure out how to actually deal with it in a safe you, know not harmful productive, constructive way and we'd. Ran a couple of workshops just really working with them and, we're still doing this we, did bullying we're. About to do ethics. Which is gonna, be a really tough subject. Again these kids are this is not their school that they're meant to go to it's sort of an after-school program so. You. Know they're very rowdy but they get engage with this stuff and we had them do the futures cone exercise and we basically painted. The, the cone on the on the floor and we said create. The different lifes, of this of this boy and tell us what's happening, in this child's life and. They really got to be imaginative around like how they can start to understand like embody the future at these different points in time and that, helped them try, to understand like you know multiple. Futures and there are that that even though they're in a state where they're, dealing with something that's very difficult, that is imminent, for them they. Can find a way around it through these methods we've. Got a bunch of developmental, assets that we're installing, into its positive, values it's, a part of boys and girls club curriculum, but we've chosen these three categories of things, we want to install in this program so you. Know positive identity, social competence, and we've, got this program that we're working on till you know this year we're gonna see how it goes but eventually we want to kind of in fold it into their annual curriculum. So it's part of their their everyday, classes. And workshops. Are. You guys interested in this stuff if you are there's. Plenty of books discursive. Design is not out yet it's by Bruce Tharpe who is an amazing amazing, futurist. And specular designer. Again there's futurist books in there speculative. Everything is the seminal book by Dunn and Ray B which, is usually, a good starting point for a lot of people who, want to just start looking into speculative, design I started. Teaching, or kind of doing expectative, workshops a GE just by doing games. And I, ran a couple games here's three that you can go and pick up things from the future I'm not sure available that is right now I know that it sold out at one point but just keep looking for it super.
Flux Instant archetypes just came out it's also. By super flux which is an organization consultancy. That's, doing a lot of this work as well over in the UK they're, founder came from the RCA as well my. Final, quote, the, day is the future belongs to those who can imagine it this is our world of course and we. Have that power to, create it and we you know design is tomorrow. You're designing that's the future right yeah of course we're all designed futurists, but. Hopefully, you understand like the message here is not just to you, know put, the thing out in the future but to understand, what, it could do to society, and the, ethical challenges I, really believe that policymaking. And ethics will be at the center of our our toolkit, in the, near future, I think we should all be very proactive about that thank, you very much thank you for coming thanks everyone in the back. Thank. You, Thank You Phil and, thank you all for coming this month, and thank you for the really. Thought-provoking. Overview. Of speculative, design and the frameworks, in. Ways that, we can all start, to thinking about designing for the future very relevant. For the series, which. Is created. To make. A space for designers. To come together and talk. About our role in crafting the future so. Join. Us next month, for design, is data and. Follow us at Google design thank you very much.