Michael Rogers, Futurist in-Residence of the New York Times Company, will paint a picture of what the future will look like in “The Next Digital Decade” during his keynote presentation at the E-Biz Forum ’08. Find out if you are a practical futurist and get tips from the expert.
What is a practical futurist?
We’ve always had plenty of professional futurists, writing books and articles, giving speeches. But in today’s world, we’re all futurists—practical futurists.
Whether it’s in our lives, our families, our work groups, our companies, even our nation, we have to make educated guesses about how technology will change the world in the years ahead. But then, unlike professional futurists, we must place bets—with our dollars, our technology, our staffing, our education, our career or some other resource.
Practical futurism is a bit like sailing upwind. First you need to determine an end point—your best guess as to where you want to end up in the future. But you rarely have the chance to sail directly to your destination. Maybe the technology you need isn’t ready for prime time yet; perhaps your current budget won’t cover everything you’d like to do; maybe you haven’t yet convinced top management that your vision is correct; perhaps you haven’t fully amortized your existing infrastructure—or any of dozens of other potential impediments to direct progress.
So the practical futurist moves forward by tacking to one side, then the other, all the while keeping the end destination in mind. The one absolute: make sure you’re never heading directly opposite from where you ultimately want to land. In the end, the future happens incrementally, not all at once. Making it happen is the job of the practical futurist.
Michael Rogers, known as “The Practical Futurist” and one of the nation’s leading experts on the impact of technology on business and society, will teach us how to use practical futurism to our advantage in his Keynote Session, “The Next Digital Decade.” He will examine how technology advancements such as widespread wireless and new devices will create a world of ubiquitous computing as a new generation, raised from childhood on technology, reaches adulthood. Be there as he shares his expertise on what this new world will look like and how will it impact us, both as individuals and as businesses.
About Michael Rogers
Michael Rogers is Futurist-in-Residence for The New York Times Company and also writes thePractical Futurist column for MSNBC. His consultancy, Practical Futurist, helps businesses and organizations worldwide think about the future.
For ten years he was vice president of The Washington Post Company’s new media division, guiding both the newspaper and its sister publication Newsweek into the new century, as well as serving as editor and general manager of Newsweek.com.
He began his career as a writer for Rolling Stone and went on to co-found Outside magazine. He then launched Newsweek’s technology column, winning numerous journalism awards. In 1993 he produced the world’s first CD-ROM newsmagazine for Newsweek, going on to develop areas on Prodigy, America Online and then a series of Internet sites. In 1999 he received a patent for the bimodal spine, a multimedia storytelling technique. In 2007 he was named to the Magazine Industry Digital Hall of Fame.
He studied physics and creative writing at Stanford University with additional training in finance at Stanford Business School’s Executive Program.
Rogers is also a best-selling novelist whose fiction explores the human impact of technology. He lives in New York City and is at work on his next book.