242 episodes

Explore hundreds of lectures by scientists, historians, artists, entrepreneurs, and more through The Long Now Foundation's award-winning lecture series, curated and hosted by Long Now co-founder Stewart Brand (creator of the Whole Earth Catalog). Recorded live in San Francisco each month since 02003, past speakers include Brian Eno, Neil Gaiman, Sylvia Earle, Daniel Kahneman, Jennifer Pahlka, Steven Johnson, and many more. Watch video of these talks and learn more about our projects at Longnow.org. The Long Now Foundation is a non-profit dedicated to fostering long-term thinking and responsibility.

Long Now: Seminars About Long-term Thinking The Long Now Foundation

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.7 • 211 Ratings

Explore hundreds of lectures by scientists, historians, artists, entrepreneurs, and more through The Long Now Foundation's award-winning lecture series, curated and hosted by Long Now co-founder Stewart Brand (creator of the Whole Earth Catalog). Recorded live in San Francisco each month since 02003, past speakers include Brian Eno, Neil Gaiman, Sylvia Earle, Daniel Kahneman, Jennifer Pahlka, Steven Johnson, and many more. Watch video of these talks and learn more about our projects at Longnow.org. The Long Now Foundation is a non-profit dedicated to fostering long-term thinking and responsibility.

    Wade Davis: Activist Anthropology

    Wade Davis: Activist Anthropology

    What is the role and purpose of Anthropology today? Wade Davis looks back at the pioneering work of Franz Boas in the early 20th century that upended long-held Western assumptions on race & gender, along with definitions of "social progress". Boas and his students used comparative ethnography to advance “cultural relativism”-- the idea that every culture is as “correct” as every other culture. Boas showed that our differences can be completely explained by social conditioning, not inherent genetic makeup, upending a deep history of scientific racism.

    This fundamental change in understanding laid the intellectual foundations for the political movements for racial, gender, and cultural equality in the 20th century. But over the last few decades, the field of Anthropology has turned inward, and seems increasingly unable to address global challenges like linguistic loss, cultural erasure, environmental destruction, and economic injustice. Davis offers ideas on how the field could change direction and reclaim global activism as part of its core once again.

    • 55 min
    Johanna Hoffman: Speculative Futures: Design Approaches to Foster Resilience and Co-create the Cities We Need

    Johanna Hoffman: Speculative Futures: Design Approaches to Foster Resilience and Co-create the Cities We Need

    Urbanist, researcher and writer Johanna Hoffman joins us to talk about speculative futures -- a powerful set of tools that can reorient urban development help us dream and build more resilient, equitable cities.

    Navigating modern change depends on imagining futures we’ve never seen. Urban planning and design should be well positioned to spearhead that work, but calculated rationale often results in urban spaces crafted to mitigate threats rather than navigate the unexpected, leaving cities increasingly vulnerable to the uncertainties of 21st century change. Long used in art, film, fiction, architecture, and industrial design, speculative futures offers powerful ways to counter this trend by moving us beyond what currently exists into the realms of what could be. Far from an indulgent creative exercise, speculative futures is a means of creating the resilient cities we urgently need.

    • 56 min
    Kate Darling: The New Breed: What Our Animal History Reveals For Our Robotic Future

    Kate Darling: The New Breed: What Our Animal History Reveals For Our Robotic Future

    Robot ethicist Kate Darling offers a nuanced and smart take on our relationships to robots and the increasing presence they will have in our lives. From a social, legal, and ethical perspective, she shows that our current ways of thinking don’t leave room for the robot technology that is soon to become part of our everyday routines. Robots are likely to supplement, rather than replace, our own skills and relationships.

    Darling also considers our history of incorporating animals into our work, transportation, military, and even families, and shows how we already have a solid basis for how to contend with, and navigate our future with robots.

    Dr. Kate Darling works at the intersection of law, ethics and robotics; as a researcher at MIT Media Lab, author and intellectual property policy advisor. Her work with Dr. Lawrence Lessig, the Harvard Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society, and other institutions explores the difficult questions that lawmakers, engineers, and the wider public will need to address as human-robot relationships evolve in the coming decades.

    Darling's work is widely published and covered in the media; and her new book is The New Breed: What Our History With Animals Reveals About Our Future With Robots.

    • 54 min
    Suzanne Simard: Mother Trees and the Social Forest

    Suzanne Simard: Mother Trees and the Social Forest

    Forest Ecologist Suzanne Simard reveals that trees are part of a complex, interdependent circle of life; that forests are social, cooperative creatures connected through underground mycorrhizal networks by which trees communicate their vitality and vulnerabilities, and share and exchange resources and support.

    Simard's extraordinary research and tenacious efforts to raise awareness on the interconnectedness of forest systems, both above and below ground, has revolutionized our understanding of forest ecology. This increasing knowledge is driving a call for more sustainable practices in forestry and land management, ones that develop strategies based on the forest as a whole entity, not on trees as isolated individuals.

    • 59 min
    Alicia Eggert: This Moment Used To Be The Future

    Alicia Eggert: This Moment Used To Be The Future

    Interdisciplinary artist Alicia Eggert and Long Now's Executive Director Alexander Rose will be in conversation for this special evening discussion of time, art and long-term thinking.

    Eggert's sign work uses sculpture to bring time to the foreground, embodying its passage through carefully chosen quotes. These words, rendered in neon and steel, cycle rhythmically through subtle text changes designed to encourage a heightened awareness of time and place in the viewer. In the sculpture “This Present Moment,” she uses an epigram of Stewart Brand’s from his book The Clock of The Long Now, which she first encountered while doing research in 02008.

    For more in-depth reading, see Long Now Managing Editor Ahmed Kabil's 02021 interview with Alicia Eggert and Long Now Fellow Jonathon Keats' article on Eggert's work in Forbes.

    Alicia Eggert's work gives material form to language and time, powerful but invisible forces that shape our perception of reality. Her creative practice is motivated by an existential pursuit to understand the linear and finite nature of human life within a seemingly infinite universe. Her inspiration is drawn from physics and philosophy, and her sculptures often co-opt the styles and structures of commercial signage to communicate messages that inspire reflection and wonder.

    Eggert's artworks have been installed on building rooftops in Russia, on bridges in Amsterdam, and on uninhabited islands in Maine, beckoning us to ponder our place in the world and the role we play in it. Eggert is an Associate Professor of Studio Art and the Sculpture Program Coordinator at the University of North Texas; her work has been exhibited internationally, and is in the collection of the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum.

    • 46 min
    Stewart Brand, Jonathan Haidt, Kevin Kelly: Democracy in the Next Cycle of History

    Stewart Brand, Jonathan Haidt, Kevin Kelly: Democracy in the Next Cycle of History

    Jonathan Haidt sees that we have entered a social-psychological phase change that was initiated in 02009 when social media platforms introduced several fateful innovations that changed the course of our society and disintegrated our consensus on reality.

    In this conversation with Long Now co-founders Stewart Brand and Kevin Kelly, Haidt presses on questions of technological optimism, morality vs ethics, teen mental health, possible platform tweaks that could reduce the damage and just how long this next cycle of history could last.

    Prompted by Haidt's piece on Why The Past 10 Years of American Life Have Been Uniquely Stupid, this discussion offers a behind the scenes look at the thinking going into Haidt's next book; release slated for the fall of 02023.

    • 1 hr 1 min

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5
211 Ratings

211 Ratings

Dave at Black Rock Auto ,

Being a member of Long Now makes me feel connected to something profound

Long Now is great, I’ve gotten so much over the years, It makes me feel like I have a connection to a deep, profound (not-so) secret society. Their ideas, projects and places aspire me to do better, or make better. The people in Long Now I admire greatly, particularly Kevin Kelly’s talks as well as Alexander Rose’s talks on the Clock progress, and the Analemma on the Hoover dam. I’m super glad to be a part of the Long Now.

all who wander are not lost ,

Interesting

A much needed look at where we’re headed and what we can do about it.

Bravo Charlie Whiskey ,

Used to be interesting

I’m an Ex long time financial supporter of this organization. The choice of speakers and subject matter for the seminars used to be fascinating but now for the most part are just…blah.

This clock they’re building sounded great but after ten years I’m beginning to think it’s just a marketing gimmick.

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