WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF
Technology is a blank slate, but when it is combined with human or machine based creativity, innovation, and entrepreneurship it is a tool that can help us transform the world, and as new powerful emerging technologies become increasingly affordable and democratised our ability to use them to disrupt and transform global business, culture, and society at speed accelerates.
THE 2024 GRIFFIN EMERGING TECHNOLOGY STARBURST
WELCOME TO THE Griffin Emerging Technology Starburst 2024 Edition, which is part of our overall 311 Institute Emerging Technology Starburst Collection, and which is complimented by the companion 311 Institute Exponential Technology Codex which explores the future and deep future and all of the exponential technologies listed on our Starbursts in greater detail.
Firstly, I’d like to wish you all a prosperous 2024 as the COVID-19 pandemic increasingly distant memory, and as we return to pre COVID-19 normality – albeit with the continued threats of geopolitical tension, high inflation, high costs of living, and war which continue to harrang many of us.
Now in its ninth year, and building on the firm foundation of the previous 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022 and 2023 Griffin Annual Emerging Technology Starbursts this year’s 2024 Starburst is the culmination of years of ceaseless investigating, monitoring, and tracking the appearance and development of new emerging technologies from every corner of the globe, and I am now tracking 633 of them which is a staggering number when you think about the potential power and impact many of them could and will have on global business, culture, and society in the years and decades to come.
Looking back at 2023 there was a sharp drop in notable world firsts compared to 2022 which, as the global pandemic becomes a distant memory for many, was somewhat surprising. However, when we consider the sharp downturn in the investment environment, and then the impact of significantly lower investment levels globally in key sectors as threats of recession continued to loom large, this fall in world firsts would be in line with expectations. Despite this though there are signs that R&D investments are returning to pre pandemic levels and that the world is getting back to normal – albeit the new normal. While the number of world firsts softened significantly I saw a tripling in the number of new emerging technologies that I spotted suggesting that we could be in for an interesting 2024 with Biotech, Energy, and Materials seeing large gains with Compute, Intelligence, Security, Sensors, and User Interfaces seeing more modest gains.
In this year’s Starburst, which extends to 2075 and displays 167 of the world’s most promising emerging technologies, each with an addressable market value of at least $500 Billion spread across 13 categories, I have promoted 35 new emerging technologies that weren’t in last years’ edition which is the third highest on record, being beaten only by 2017 and 2018 Starbursts.
While the Starbursts might look visually appealing they have a more practical purpose which is to help governments, individuals, and organisations alike envision and predict new disruptive threats to their countries, industries, and companies. And, furthermore, when used in conjunction with our How to Build Exponential Enterprises Codex and our first of a kind ExPLORER Innovation Framework, they can be used to help organisations accelerate the development of innovative new policies, products, and services.
By creating and publishing these Starbursts I also hope they help spark people’s imagination, and demonstrate to us all, young and old, rich and poor, that nothing is impossible. For example, this year alone, in a sea awash with sci-fi like breakthroughs, unexpected surprises, and all manner of newsworthy new concepts this is just a sliver of what I saw: the very first 5 hour successful human gene sequencing trial, AI beating humans at a physical sport – drone racing – and discovering 200 new CRISPR-like systems and 380,000 compounds, the first analogue AI and computer chips, brain navigating microbots and Cancer killing nanorobotic swarms, then obviously ChatGPT and new GPT AI models, and the first Constitutional AI models from Anthropic.
We also saw AI rank in the top 1% of human creatives for its work, the first cyber crime LLMs, and new Electrogenetic interfaces. There were also breakthroughs in the deployment of the first Exascale computer systems and the first example of malware bricking hardware, while the Chinese developed the first infinitely firing laser weapons, and elsewhere we saw injectable neuroprosthetic breakthroughs, getting closer to human in vivo robotic surgery, the development of new Large Behavioural AI Models (LBM), ultrasound laser force fields, living CAR-T drugs, and the first observation of matter creation from light. And, speaking of light we saw yet another example of memory wiping with light, mind reading earbuds, and of course AI creating near creator grade synthetic content, while multi-modal Generative AI neared human levels of intelligence in almost 60 subjects.
Then there was the first organism with 50% Synthetic DNA, new Petabit photonic chips, the very first predictive vaccines developed by AI, Quantum energy teleportation, a robot CEO was appointed at a Chinese firm, the rise of semi-autonomous AI agents, and the first example of constrained AI’s self-organising to replicate the brain features of complex organisms, self-replicating DNA nanobots, the weirdness that is sound activated gene therapy, spray on sensors and user interfaces, torpedo launching drones and the first uncrewed dog-fighting fighter jets, advances in Zero Knowledge Proof cryptography, and the first de-extincted woolly mammoth meatball for dinner … and of course hundreds more.
It’s no understatement, therefore, to say that I look forwards to seeing what amazing new technology concepts will emerge in 2024 as the world emerges from its COVID-19 and post COVID slumber.
Signing off for now in traditional fashion if I could give you one piece of advice from all my years of being a “futurist,” it would still be be forget what you know and get rid of your preconceptions of what’s possible, keep learning, and keep exploring. And if my Starbursts have left you wanting to learn more about our collective future and deep future then dive into the wormhole and explore this site and all its awesome content, most of which will push your thinking to the limits.