45 episodes

The Near Future Laboratory Podcast is conversations at the vanguard of design, technology, futures, and culture, hosted by Julian Bleecker — founder of the Near Future Laboratory.

https://julianbleecker.com

Support this podcast at https://www.patreon.com/nearfuturelaboratory

Near Future Laboratory Podcast Julian Bleecker

    • Technology
    • 5.0 • 23 Ratings

The Near Future Laboratory Podcast is conversations at the vanguard of design, technology, futures, and culture, hosted by Julian Bleecker — founder of the Near Future Laboratory.

https://julianbleecker.com

Support this podcast at https://www.patreon.com/nearfuturelaboratory

    N°45 — Design Fiction and The Generalist with Joe Lindley & Paul Coulton

    N°45 — Design Fiction and The Generalist with Joe Lindley & Paul Coulton

    A conversation with Joe Lindley PhD and Paul Coulton PhD about the role of The Generalist and Design Fiction to see the unanticipated and unexpected possibilities of design in shaping future products, strategies, ideas, and worlds.

    Please support this podcast by becoming a Near Future Laboratory Patron over at https://patreon.com/nearfuturelaboratory and join the Near Future Laboratory Discord.

    You can read Joe's doctoral thesis 'A thesis about design fiction' here: https://www.research.lancs.ac.uk/portal/en/publications/a-thesis-about-design-fiction(1b771f57-1c78-4bda-9d38-b0f452c983ac).html and the full breadth of his research here: https://www.research.lancs.ac.uk/portal/en/people/joseph-lindley and his project Design Works here: https://designresearch.works/.

    And Paul's work can be found here: https://www.lancaster.ac.uk/lica/about/people/paul-coulton — they have so many collaborative research projects and papers that you'll find a really rich trove of insights and thought-provoking material so beware the beautiful rabbit hole!

    Thanks for listening and thank you to all of my awesome patrons.

    -Julian

    • 54 min
    N°44 — Meow Wolf, Public Policy, and Design Fiction with SRG Bennett

    N°44 — Meow Wolf, Public Policy, and Design Fiction with SRG Bennett

    A conversation with Stephen Bennett and his work at the UK's Policy Lab where design fiction, experiential design, speculative design meets the technocratic machine of policy and decision making.

    The best way you can become part of the Near Future Laboratory and help out is to support this podcast right now over at https://patreon.com/nearfuturelaboratory and rate the podcast, write a review, and share through whatever platform on which you are presently listening! Patreon supporters get access to our supporters' only Discord community where all the things happen.

    Interested in discussing how Design Fiction can become part of your organizations' strategy and design-based decision making? Want to learn more about Design Fiction? You can find all the links to get in touch here: https://linktr.ee/bleeckerj

    https://www.srgbennett.com/

    https://openpolicy.blog.gov.uk/

    • 51 min
    N°43 — Computer Art Pioneer Herbert W. Franke & Susanne Paech

    N°43 — Computer Art Pioneer Herbert W. Franke & Susanne Paech

    Back in May I had a conversation with Susanne Paech, the wife of pioneering computer artist Herbert W. Franke. Franke passed away on July 16th. He had just turned 96 in May. Franke was a true innovator, exploring with a pioneer's curiosity the ways humans and machines could collaborate to create unexpected work together. Before computer art was "a thing" and before it was at all obvious as to the processes by which one would create or collaborate with a machine, Herbert was pushing ahead. As with most innovators, it wasn't at all clear to those who had a firm grip on what could count as 'aesthetics' or 'art' that this was anything worthy of consideration. Nevertheless he continued to place value on these explorations and collaborations with everything from an oscilloscope to an Apple II and onward.

    Please support this podcast over at Patreon! It makes a big difference, and helps me continue to develop and produce this content. And please rate the podcast, write a review on whatever platform you're listening, and share it widely!

    🙋🏽‍♂️

    • 47 min
    N°42 — Sci-Fi, Museum of the Future, & Blade Runner with Fred Scharmen

    N°42 — Sci-Fi, Museum of the Future, & Blade Runner with Fred Scharmen

    This conversation is with Fred Scharmen. Fred teaches architecture and urban design at Morgan State University's School of Architecture and Planning. He is the co-founder of the Working Group on Adaptive Systems, an art and design consultancy based in Baltimore, Maryland.

    Fred's recent book 'Space Settlements' is his reflection on a 1975 program in engineering and systems design that was held at Stanford University, which itself resulted in a research report called 'Space Settlements: A Design Study'

    Fred and the Near Future Laboratory recently collaborated on installations for the Museum of the Future in Dubai. They recently published a Medium article on the project called 'An Archeology for the Future in Space', which dives into the design fiction approach we undertook.

    Please consider supporting the podcast over on the Near Future Laboratory's Patreon page. Your support really does help keep this podcast and the Design Fiction Newsletter going! Thank you to my awesome Patrons!

    • 47 min
    N°41 — Design Fiction with Elliott P. Montgomery

    N°41 — Design Fiction with Elliott P. Montgomery

    Elliott and I discuss some meta topics related to speculative design generally speaking and design fiction, the way its practiced, taught, and received in academic as well as commercial contexts. We also discuss the map he created 'Unresolved Map of Speculative Design' which should not be taken as literal rather as a provocation and conversation starter to discuss (not resolve) the role, relationships, situatedness, and purposes of futures thinking and the futures mindset.

    This map has been generative some others whose practice operates in the general space of futures design (https://blog.tobiasrevell.com/2020/08/05/box-006-gadget-realism/, https://futurehumanbydesign.com/2019/09/futures-thinking-and-design-thinking/) and recently I found it quite helpful for describing the 'Where' of design fiction in a conversation with a c-level executive who wanted to have a better sense of where it 'fit' alongside other practices within their innovation design teams. I discuss this further in the Issue 32 of the Design Fiction Newsletter.

    Elliott P. Montgomery is a design researcher, strategist and educator whose work focuses on speculative inquiries at the confluence of social, technological and environmental impact. He is an Assistant Professor of Strategic Design and Management at Parsons School of Design, The New School, teaching in the MFA Transdisciplinary Design Program and across the School of Design Strategies. He is also the co-founder of The Extrapolation Factory, an award winning design-futures research studio based in Brooklyn. He was previously a design research resident at the US Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects Agency, Energy as well receiving the Graham Foundation's Individual Grant and The Shed's Open Call commission. He holds a Master's in Design Interactions from the Royal College of Art in London and a Bachelor's in Industrial Design from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh.

    • 46 min
    N°40 — Speculative Design with Kontrapunkt

    N°40 — Speculative Design with Kontrapunkt

    A conversation with Jonas Schmidt and Philip Linnemann from the design agency Kontrapunkt. We discuss the state of play around the broad collection of practices we refer to as speculative design, and their new futures tool, Kontrapunkt Futures: https://futures.kontrapunkt.com/

    Philip also recently gave a TEDx talk discussing the concept of futures design: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pj63yLFBZdk

    Kontrapunkt: https://www.kontrapunkt.com/

    Kontrapunkt Futures: https://futures.kontrapunkt.com/

    Philip: https://www.linkedin.com/in/philiplinnemann/

    Jonas: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jonasmschmidt/

    • 1 hr 9 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
23 Ratings

23 Ratings

Dábháid ,

Amplifies the weak signals

“Futurists” gave thinking about the future a bad rap - cheap futurism is to figuring out where we’re going and why as talking heads are to real politics: lots of hot air and prognostication with no accountability.

Julian isn’t that kind of “futurist”. This podcast is an industrial-grade-curious look into where design, technology, culture is and the nascent vectors it’s starting to go. It amplifies the weak but compelling signal from the noise and presents it thoughtfully.

If you’re interested in the fun to be had trying to anticipate the near future, this is for you.

NicDiPalma ,

Important conversations in futures thinking and practice

Julian’s NFL podcast is a ‘lab’ that you drop into, a conversation that occurs as it develops, and without any pretension that he and his guests have all the answers. They are ‘on the journey’, inviting every listener to join, and will often gift you with better questions.

EmC2022 ,

Inspiration & Future Smart

Love Julian and his take on design/tech/future. I became familiar with his work when I watched his talks at the D school at Stanford. He's a brilliant (and humble) human and anyone interested in design should have a listen.

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