Recap #40: Permacomputing & the Cloud

This week's Recap covers advances in epigenetics, cultivated meat, the physical impacts of the cloud, and more.

2 months ago   •   2 min read

By Caroline Barrueco, Michell Zappa,

AI generative illustration by Caroline Barrueco made with

Welcome to the Envisioning Community Recap, a weekly publication in which we curate the best stories about emerging technology and futures literacy.

This week, I find myself surrounded by boxes ahead of moving across the Atlantic, from Brazil to Portugal. With so much of our digital lives in the cloud, it is really in moments like moving our stuff, that we truly acknowledge the amount of dependencies and knickknacks picked up on our journey. Objects, services, and subscriptions, accumulating over a lifetime, leaving us increasingly intertwined with our possessions. As an extension of our senses, technology generally obeys the same forces as those that shaped it. If we are strained or overburdened, our creations will probably behave the same way. This week, consider the weight of your responsibilities and how they shape your decisions and possible futures. ~MZ

Emerging Technology

đŸĨ• What you eat can reprogram your genes
Dr. Monica Dus explains the emerging science of nutrigenomics and how food can influence the expression of our genes.

đŸ§Ŧ AI-designed protein awakens silenced genes, one by one
A new technique uses AI to design proteins able to control gene activity without altering the DNA.

Future Perspectives:
As we just saw on the previous two links, our knowledge of epigenetics is fast blooming. Many diseases, including cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and mental illnesses are influenced by epigenetic mechanisms. Perhaps soon, we could take pills with synthetically designed, or naturally found components to turn on or off specific genes.

🍖 Technology for scaling cultivated meat
Micro Meat founders explain how cultivated meat is made, and how their company wants to tackle current difficulties on the process.

👩🏾‍đŸ’ģ Amy Webb launches 2022 Emerging Tech Trend Report
Watch Amy Webb launch of the Future Today Tech Trends Report 2022 at SXSW. Don't miss the 2022 Report.

Tech and Culture

🤙đŸŊ How one group is remaking sign language for the VR age
The D/deaf community is adapting sign language to be used together with hand tracking gear in VR.

đŸ¤ŗđŸŊ Tech + Culture: Individuality
Luma Eldin offers a deep dive on the future of individuality, as part of a series of explorations at the intersection of tech and culture.


🌩ī¸ The staggering ecological impacts of computation and the cloud
The "cloud" is far from being ethereal; this MIT five year study found the physical impacts of data centers range from neurological issues to unnecessary electricity usage.

🌱 Permacomputing - A holistic approach to computing
Permacomputing wants to minimize the impacts of the computing industry by increasing repairability and the lifespan of hardware and software, while decreasing unnecessary internet time, and therefore, treating computational resources as finite and precious.

Caroline Barrueco
Research Fellow

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