- Unbeliebable: White House turns Bieber petition response into immigration screed
- Obama signs law denying Iran ambassador’s visa, but says law is ‘advisory’
- Mich. judge to laughing convicted killer: ‘I hope you die in prison’
- Man charged in Kansas City-area highway shootings
- Keystone XL pipeline still on hold after State Dept. decision
- Fla. man charged with killing 16-month-old son to play Xbox undisturbed
- Drones from the deep: Pentagon develops ocean-floor attack robots
- Michigan mayor slaps back atheists’ try to erect ‘reason station’ at city hall
- PHILLIPS: Where is the conservative establishment?
- 7.5-magnitude earthquake shakes southern Mexico
What does the future hold? Davos takes a guess
DAVOS, SWITZERLAND (AP) - Forget the endless debates about the euro or government debts. What does the future hold?
The World Economic Forum at Davos is always a showcase for new research, trends and ideas. Here’s some predictions about the future from participants at the annual gathering of the world’s elite:
WEATHER AND WATER
Climate change will lead to more and more extreme weather, which will cause tremendous economic upheaval, predicts New York University economist Nouriel Roubini.
“It’s not just that New York is going to be underwater 30 years from now,” he said, referring to the devastation caused last fall by Hurricane Sandy.
Oxford University physicist Tim Palmer _ who said as a scientist he preferred probabilities to prediction _ noted there is a 10- to 15-percent chance that the Earth will warm by 6 degrees Celsius within a century, leading to “catastrophic consequences for humanity” ranging from extreme weather to rising seas.
Vali Nasr, dean of the School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University, said many countries will start running out of water in the coming years.
“Water is the new oil,” he said.
A TECHNOLOGICAL SURGE
Laura Tyson, a business professor at the University of California at Berkeley, said one of the great concerns should be “the employment effects of technology,” with so many jobs being rendered obsolete by scientific or technological advances.
Discussions of such advances were everywhere at Davos.
Sebastian Thrun, a computer science professor at Stanford University and leader of Google’s Self-Driving Car Project, said he thinks Google co-founder Sergey Brin’s prediction that within five years driverless cars will be on the streets used by regular people is going to happen.
“It’ll be a while before they’re going to be mainstream, and there’ll be all kinds of interesting questions coming about security, privacy, safety of the system as a whole,” Thrun said. “But if they are available within five years for general consumers, I think within 15 years you ought to be able to buy one of those.”
MENTAL ILLNESS UNDERSTOOD
Edward Boyden, an associate professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology who directs a neural engineering research group, says new technologies for analyzing the brain will produce significant advances in fighting mental illness.
TWT Video Picks
Women losing coverage under Obamacare, too
- Scalia to students on high taxes: At a certain point, 'perhaps you should revolt'
- Former Ranger breaks silence on Pat Tillman death: I may have killed him
- Special Forces' suicide rates hit record levels casualties of 'hard combat'
- Feds approve powdered alcohol; 'Palcohol' available later this year
- Justice at last: 'Evil woman' outed for grabbing girl's game ball
- Inside China: Marine's comment on islands draws sharp Chinese response
- Army goes to war with National Guard, seizes Apache attack helicopters
- EDITORIAL: Mark Warner running scared?
- Nancy Pelosi washes immigrants' feet in humble Holy Week act then promotes on Twitter
- Harry Reid blasts Bundy ranch supporters as 'domestic terrorists'
Top 10 handguns in the U.S.