Feeling lonely people while surrounded with people
Society of Simulations

What Is Next Nature? #16

According to psychologist Martin Seligman: “Social relationships do not guarantee high happiness, but it does not appear to occur without them”. Humans are intrinsically social beings. Like Lev Vygotsky, another psychologist, said “We become ourselves through others”. Both psychologists point out that social relationships are essential for our development and well-being. Considering the population density today and our social system, it shouldn’t be a problem to meet that need for social companionship. Yet somehow loneliness has become one of the major societal issues of today. Is it a matter of one or the other, connectivity versus conviviality?

Read the entire Next Nature is… series.

Eco coin at Lowlands Popfestival
Plastic Planet

Plastic Cup Fields Are Not Forever

Last weekend a team of experts from NNN, Deloitte and Bitonic gathered at Lowlands Popfestival to explore the opportunities for a local ECO coin implementation. The ECO coin is an alternative currency that aims to give people an economical incentive, rather than only moral, to add value to their environment. A festival is a perfect local setting to test-drive the concept. The idea is to link the ECO coin to the plastic cups scattered around the venue: one coin for every cup.

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Meat the Future

Towards a Post-Animal Bioeconomy

In 1931, Wintston Churchill speculated on the future of laboratory-grown meat in his essay Fifty Years Hence. He wrote: “We shall escape the absurdity of growing a whole chicken in order to eat the breast or wing by growing these parts separately under a suitable medium”. Even before animal welfare conditions and environmental damage, Churchill foresaw the benefits of simple animal tissues over raising animals as a whole.

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Forward to Nature

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Virtual worlds, printed food, living cities, wild robots – we’re so surrounded by technology that it’s becoming our next nature. How can we live in harmony with it? The Next Nature Network is a 21st century nature organization that wants to go forward – not back – to nature. We stir debate, create events, exhibitions, publications and products that bring biology and technology into balance. Because ultimately, we may not just have to save the pandas but the people too. Will you join us?

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Spiritual leader Deepak Chopra just unveiled a 20-minute therapy session inviting us to come back to the present moment through virtual reality.
Intimate Technology

Virtual Reality Meditation

Spending a few minutes in meditation can reduce stress and restore inner peace. Spiritual leader Deepak Chopra recently unveiled a 20-minute therapy session inviting us to stay in the present moment and awake our inner selves through virtual reality. Chopra joined forces with his son Gotham and developer Wevr to explore the role of VR in the future of wellbeing. His meditation simulation Finding Your True Self will be available for purchase later this year.

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Augmented Bodies

Talking Contact Lenses

Imagine your devices talking to each other. What would the conversation be about? Would they talk about your health? Or would they gossip about your new shoes? The first option is possible, as researchers at University of Washington have introduced a new wireless communication method that allows small wearable devices to ‘talk’ to everyday gadgets.

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Wearing earphones without listening to music
Suburban Utopia

What Is Next Nature? #15

You need to concentrate or you simply don’t feel like talking? Just plug in your earphones and listen to the sweet sound of silence. There’s probably nothing better to hold talkative people off – without offending or looking antisocial – than simply acting as if you’re enjoying some music. It’s a very effective 21st century solution to a 21st century problem. Where to get some quality time with yourself in the midst of our buzzing cities? There’s distraction everywhere, wearing earphones creates a bubble of personal space.

Read the entire Next Nature is… series.