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Mind the Future

Contemporary trends delineated in a comical, design-forward compendium

by James Thorne in Culture on 06 March 2012

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If you've ever wondered about how machines become emotional, if you're curious about the rise of monocultures or if you were unaware that mounting transparency beckons the end of secrecy, Mind the Future is your guide to the 60 most important long-term societal trends. Essentially a collection of color-coded notecards, the information takes you through scenarios from environmental plights to political conundrums with a bit of wit and a healthy dose of research.

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Born from the Web for Interdisciplinary Research and Expertise (WIRE), this think tank-produced collection focuses on movements in economics, politics, technology, society and ecology. Accompanying the predictions are comical graphics that illustrate the problem at hand. A card on 21st-century epidemics shows an obese likeness of Michelangelo's David, An "I ♥ Botox" T-shirt demonstrates how health has become a status symbol and the redefinition of patents is joined by none other than a tape deck turned Jolly Roger.

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In addition to the trends, a set of black cards discusses the world's most pressing dilemmas, weighing the pros and cons for openness versus isolation, materiality versus virtuality, nature versus artifice and more. Perfect for coffee tables and waiting areas, Mind the Future tempers the oft-depressing outlook for the coming years.

Also worth a look is Mind the Future's hilarious "trailer", which demonstrates the box's wireless capabilities, cutting edge features and indestructibility.

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