On July 12, over 1,5 thousand experts from various fields gathered at the Ural International Exhibition and Forum of Industry and Innovations “INNOPROM 2012” for participation in the first-ever forecast session “We Plan the Future.” The moderator of the forecast session is renowned journalist Leonid Parfyonov.
The interest in the forecast session turned out to be enormous - there were no vacant seats in the hall for plenary sessions of the Ural International Exhibition. Among the distinguished participants of the session, there were the Cabinet of Ministers of the regional government headed by Sverdlovsk Region’s Governor Yevgeny Kuyvashev, leading politologists, technologists, cultural figures, scientists, INNOPROM participants and guests.
Greeting the audience, the virtual character - an original visual personification of the Global Mind, with the simple Russian name Katya, defined the main topics of discussion: energy efficiency, innovations, intellect, automation, urban planning, new materials and technologies, their impact on future development of humankind.
“Today, the Global Mind is like a young child that is growing and asking questions. We will try to find the answers together with the experts that are ready to share their expertise and ideas,” said Leonid Parfenov.
True “star” experts were invited to participate. Guy Kawasaki, writer, the ideologist of Apple, shared with the audience his invaluable experience garnered at the legendary Apple and some insights from its founder Steve Jobs. Guy Kawasaki encourages everyone to believe in their cause and not to take heed to the experts that question the success of innovations. “An expert’s opinion and luck are not always the same thing. If your idea is valuable, unique and anticipates the client’s wishes, don’t stop there, keep working at it. The harder the going gets, the better the result will be. That’s why sometimes first you have to believe in something so that you can see it later,” says Guy Kawasaki with confidence. The expert gave a few technical tips on designing and presenting his products, noting that you should never be afraid of changing your viewpoint. “Changing your mind does not mean making a mistake. If you change your mind, it means you are an intelligent and sensible person. Don’t be afraid to have a mind of your own, otherwise you will not have victory,” emphasized Apple’s ideologist.
Another expert, the world famous inventor and futurologist Ray Kurzweil, is confident that the planet’s future will depend not on natural mineral resources and other riches of the earth, but on the mind, ideas, mathematics, and new technologies. “Russia has a leading position in these areas,” noted Ray Kurzweil.
The most successful industrial designer in the world Karim Rashid dedicated his speech to the role of design in modern world and its developments, stating that the main goal of any work is the desire to make the world more livable, beautiful and humane. “Without design, most things wouldn’t even exist and the world would be dull and depressive. That’s why it is important to pay a lot of attention to design and project engineering,” says Karim Rashid.
Baroness Susan Greenfield, member of the House of Lords of the UK and a distinguished biotechnologist, talked about correlation between modern technologies and man and human brain. “We are teachable and able to adjust to the world around us, but it does not mean that the world can subject us. We must determine the agenda and the future of our children; we shouldn’t allow technologies to do that for us,” says Susan Greenfield and warns the audience that the more contacts we make in the cyber world, the fewer opportunities we allow ourselves to fully develop and live in reality.
Mu Rongping, Director of the Institute of Policy and Management, Academy of Sciences PRC, spoke about technological foresight and tools for creating innovative capacity. The most renowned business guru Geoff Burch shared his thoughts about opponents of new technologies and finding a possibility to encourage people to work together with technologies and not against them.
The forecast session was a success in opening the discussion platform of INNOPROM 2012. It raised a few topical questions that the exhibitors will try to find answers to during the days of the exhibition.