2008 Map of the Decade
The Future is a New View of Life ...
... and the view is distinctly biological.
Even in arenas more social than biological, new biological identities—and new understandings of biological connectedness—draw people into unexpected affiliations. We turn to face the decade with a naturalist’s eye: we’re looking for the intricate connections that form the webs of our evolving life as if our futures depend on it.
Think of it, perhaps, as an organism, starting from a single cell. Like any organism, it unfolds from a small set of internal signals. First there’s just one cell. Then it divides. The new cells specialize and become patterned. The pattern becomes a template for further development. As the future begins to take shape, you can see it in what biologists call fate maps—molecular snapshots of the embryonic cells as they divide, over and over, to reveal what they will become.
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