NEO.LIFE: A Kickstarter Launch Party
Join us for a celebration and Kickstarter launch party for the new book: Neo.Life: 25 Visions for the Future of Our Species.
Join NEO.LIFE Founder Jane Metcalfe and Editor Brian Bergstein for a conversation among contributors to their new book, including:
- synthetic biologist and artist Christina Agapakis
- neuroscientist Osh Agabi
- investor/entrepreneur Seth Bannon
- neuroscientist Poppy Crum
- neuroscientist/entrepreneur David Eagleman
- investor/author/éminense grise Juan Enriquez
- CRISPR scientist Samira Kiani
- investor/sci-fi author Ramez Naam
- and synthetic biology CEO/sci-fi author Hannu Rajaniemi.
Hear from the scientists, then stay and dance with the smart people!
Music by DJ Scumfrog, one of New York’s top 10 producers, known for his epic shows at Robot Heart (Burning Man).
We now have the tools to transform ourselves and our species. Greater health and longevity, enhanced brains, and engineered fertility are in the works. What’s just over the horizon is even more astonishing. We call this the neobiological frontier. Neo.Life: 25 Visions for the Future of Our Species is a collection of 25 essays, interviews, works of fiction, and art offering a big-picture perspective on the profound changes made possible by the merging of biology and technology. The book brings together today’s smartest and most creative inventors, artists, and scientists to tell us their vision of the future. Become a curious pioneer and help NEO.LIFE bring these ideas to life!
Sign up for the Kickstarter here: www.neo.life/visions
NEO.LIFE asks the big questions that will drive the next phase of our evolution. The digital publication features original reporting and analysis by journalists who have worked for or contribute to The Atlantic, MIT Technology Review, Science, Nature, The New Yorker, The New York Times, and more. The founder is Jane Metcalfe, the former president and cofounder of Wired magazine, the legendary media company that wrote the first draft of the history of the digital revolution, and captured its spirit as well. Brian Bergstein, former Executive Editor for MIT Technology Review, is NEO.LIFE’s Editor at Large.
Jane Metcalfe is the founder of NEO.LIFE. Probably best known as the founder, with Louis Rossetto, of WIRED Magazine, Jane and Louis anticipated the major upheavals the Digital Revolution would unleash and built the award-winning brand and media platform hailed as the Magazine of the Decade, winning several national magazine awards, and a Webby for lifetime achievement. Jane later served as the president of TCHO Chocolate, the artisanal chocolate producer on San Francisco’s Embarcadero known for its ground breaking TCHO Source program, which has taught fermentation and drying techniques to thousands of cacao farmers in Latin American and Africa.
Brian Bergstein is a science and technology journalist in Boston. He was the founding editor of NEO.LIFE after serving as executive editor of MIT Technology Review, which was nominated for two National Magazine Awards in general excellence during his tenure. Previously he was technology editor for The Associated Press, the AP's national technology correspondent, and head of its Silicon Valley bureau.
Christina Agapakis is a biologist, writer, and artist interested in microbes and the future of biotechnology. She collaborates with engineers, designers, artists, and social scientists to explore the many unexpected connections between microbiology, technology, art, and popular culture. During her PhD at Harvard, she worked on producing hydrogen fuel in bacteria and making photosynthetic animals. She has taught designers at the Art Center College of Design and biomolecular engineers at UCLA. She is currently creative director at Ginkgo Bioworks, an organism design company that is bringing biology to industrial engineering.
Osh Agabi is the founder & CEO of Koniku, an early stage synthetic neurobiology company based in Berkeley, California. His premise is as simple as it is radical: “The merger of synthetic neurobiology/neuroscience and silicon technology into a coherent, sturdy and elegant device. A device which solves urgent real-world problems anywhere — the lab, industry, and street corner.” Osh was a robotics engineer who built and programmed pick & place robots as well as two-photon microscopes for studying synaptic transmission in the mouse visual cortex.
Seth Bannon is an entrepreneur and investor in early stage impact startups. He's a Founding Partner at Fifty Years, a seed fund supporting entrepreneurs solving the world's biggest problems with technology. Seth has invested in a range of startups shaping the world for the better — from a company engineering microbes to produce industrial chemicals sustainably, to a company building small satellites to cover the earth in internet, to a company culturing meat to eat.
Poppy Crum works to bridge the gap between technology and insightful, effective human interaction. As a multi-dimensional advocate of empathetic technology, she builds technologies that best leverage human physiology to enhance our experiences and how we interact with the world. Poppy serves as the Chief Scientist at Dolby Laboratories and as an Adjunct Professor at Stanford University in the Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics and Program in Symbolic Systems. At Dolby, Poppy is responsible for integrating neuroscience and sensory data science into algorithm design, technological development, and strategy. At Stanford, her work focuses on the impact and feedback potential of new technologies on neuroplasticity and learning.
David Eagleman is a neuroscientist and a New York Times bestselling author. He heads the Center for Science and Law, a national non-profit institute, and serves as an adjunct professor at Stanford University. He is best known for his work on sensory substitution, time perception, brain plasticity, synesthesia, and neurolaw. He is the writer and presenter of the international PBS series, The Brain with David Eagleman, and the author of the companion book, The Brain: The Story of You. Eagleman is the founder and CEO of Neosensory, a company that translates sound into haptic input for wearable devices that can enable the hearing impaired.
Juan Enriquez is a leading authority on the economic impact of life sciences on business and society and is a respected investor and entrepreneur. Juan was the founding Director of the Harvard Business School's Life Sciences Project, with many of his innovative thoughts captured in his bestselling book, As The Future Catches You, which provided an accurate blueprint of how a bio-based economy changes industries and corporations. His most recent publication is Evolving Ourselves: How Unnatural Selection and Nonrandom Mutation are Changing Life on Earth which he co-authored with Steve Gullans, which describes a world where humans increasingly shape their environment, themselves, and other species.
Samira Kiani is a scientist and professor in the School of Pathology at the University of Pittsburgh and the Pittsburgh Liver Research Center at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. She completed her postdoctoral training in the center for Synthetic Biology at MIT, where she worked on developing synthetic gene circuits to reprogram the function and behavior of mammalian cells based on the (CRISPR)/Cas9 technology. Cas9 protein is a DNA cleaving enzyme that can be targeted to any DNA sequence by means of a small guide RNA (gRNA) and can be adapted both for gene editing and gene regulation.
Ramez Naam is an American technologist and science fiction writer. He is currently co-chair for energy and the environment at Singularity University, where he lectures on energy, environment, and innovation. He is best known as the author of the Nexus Trilogy. His other books include The Infinite Resource: The Power of Ideas on a Finite Planet and More than Human: Embracing the Promises of Biological Enhancement. Earlier in his life, Naam was a computer scientist at Microsoft for 13 years, and led teams working on Outlook, Internet Explorer, and Bing.
Hannu Rajaniemi is an entrepreneur, scientist, and acclaimed sci-fi author. His work involves solving technical problems by imagining a world in which those problems are already solved and working backwards to make it reality. He has deployed this framework for clients as wide ranging as Autodesk, the Dubai Future Foundation, and Takeda. He is the CEO/cofounder of Helix Nanotechnologies and the acclaimed writer of sci-fi novels including The Quantum Thief and Summerland. An imaginary quantum technology in one of his novels inspired the UK Ministry of Defence to fund his first company (a data science/AI consultancy) to carry out research into its feasibility.
Jesse Houk, aka DJ Scumfrog recently played a sunrise set on top of Twin Peaks for a bunch of neuroscientists attending the BrainMind Summit. But he’s mostly known for his full length albums as a solo artist, his remixes of artists like Kylie Minoque, Missy Elliott, New Order and Annie Lennox, and his collaborations with artists like David Bowie, Cyndi Lauper, and Sting. Many know him from his time spinning for Robot Heart, a legendary Burning Man camp. Jesse is a Dutch American DJ, remixer, and producer, recently named one of the top 10 producers in New York. Check out his M.B.T.S. underground club nights in New York City.