Daniel Kraft: Exponential Technologies and The Future of Medicine at TEDxBerkeley (Transcript)

So, it’s great to be back here at enemy territory, from Stanford. But briefly, I’d the honor last year of speaking about how exponential technologies are really going to change the future of healthcare and medicine, and is sort of epitomized by our cell phones and their rapidly advancing ability of their power and speed.

And I came to understand and appreciate exponential technologies through my role, running the medicine track for a new program held at NASA Ames called Singularity University, where we look at different fields from AI robotics, nanotech, space, energy. It was co-founded by Peter Diamantis, who started the XPRIZE, and Ray Kurzweil, a futurist and author. And it’s an incredible 10-week program. We’ve doubled to 80 students in the summer, and we have the 7-day executive programs, which look at exponential technologies as well. And we just announced last week a new program, to look at really where technology is affecting healthcare, called FutureMed.

How exponential technologies shape the future of health, pharmaceuticals, biomedicine. And as a brief update from last year, I just sort of touch on a few things that have happened even last year. So, we’re really rapidly entering the world of digital medicine, and especially artificial intelligence. We all heard about Watson last week beating the two champions at Jeopardy. Well, imagine the AI physician, which is rapidly coming, and is going to change the future of healthcare.

Personalized medicine and genomics. A year ago, it cost about 30,000 dollars to do a sequence, a complete genome. This year it’s less than 10,000 dollars. And while last year maybe a thousand people were sequenced, this year, about 10,000, and next year probably tens of thousands will be sequenced. It’s going to change our appreciation of our own genetic information.

In neuromedicine, in neuroscience, we’re in the era of brain computer interfaces. At one point we’re placing chips on the brain that can control robotic limbs, but now for a couple hundred dollars, just launched this last summer, you can buy your own brain computer interface to control your video games. And in the world of robotics, just round the corner, there’s Berkeley Bionics, which a few months ago announced eLegs. And we had an example of a gentleman, who is paraplegic, walking with an exoskeleton, at Singularity University, using these exoskeletons. My world of regeneretive medicine and stem cells, we’re entering the world of stem cell alchemy. We can turn a skin cell into a heart cell or a neuro cell.

Many many examples of exponential technologies. So, I encourage you to check out our new program, FutureMed2011.com. And as you innovate and think of the future, think about how rapidly technologies are progressing, and that you can leverage them at their convergence to make great change and new inventions and help the world. Thanks a lot.

 


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