AIHce 2014 Kicks Off with a Discussion on the Future

In Monday's Opening General Session, Peter Leyden discussed the upcoming paradigm shifts that will change our world.

AIHce kicked off early Monday morning, June 2, with an Opening General Session from Peter Leyden, the former Managing Editor at Wired Magazine, CEO of the Reinventors Network and a serial entrepreneur in Silicon Valley.

In his opening session, Leyden discussed how big technology paradigm shifts are changing our world. First, he took a look at historic times that faced similar paradigm shift (such as right after the Great Depression), and then he outlined the major transformations he would be discussing in his presentation: the digital revolution, the future of video, demographic changes, global shifts, cleaner energy and politics (the latter focused on the reinvention of America).

Leyden stressed the importance of the next couple decades. "These are explosive times," he said. "They take about 10 or 15 years of rapid transformation, and I'd argue we're in one now."

On the digital technology/explosion of video front, Leyden discussed the idea of big data and how it will transform the world over the coming years. He also pointed out the increasing presence of video in our world. "Google hangouts and other platforms that allow for video brainstorming and meetings with numerous users will change how we innovate moving forward. The number of people in the world going online will also have a strong impact on our ability to progress and create emerging technologies," Leyden said.

In terms of demographics, Leyden pointed out the importance of the millennial generation -- not only is it large, but its qualities are promising. Most millennials are tech savvy, civic minded, racially diverse, collaborative, global and green, Leyden said. In addition, our society will see strong demographic changes in the coming decades -- by 2050, roughly 30% of all Americans will be Hispanic.

Leyden concluded his presentation by touching on climate change and emerging technologies millenials will be creating to deal with climate change in the coming years in the bio tech, nano tech and clean tech industries. He finished his speech by stressing the promise of the coming years -- he believes the brightest minds will use the available technologies to truly bring innovation forward. People will look back on our time period and say, "That's when the world went digital, that's when the world went global, and that's when the world went sustainable" said Leyden.

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