The convergence of nano-bio-info-cognitive (the so-called NBIC) technologies has been hailed by series of commentators as new engine for socio-economic change and accelerators of a projected Fourth Industrial Revolution (Industry 4.0), an event bound to bear transformational impact on human institutions ranging from the economic and political to the cultural and ethical. What’s more? These emerging/converging technologies occupy and continue to remain at the heart of sci-tech advances both fuelling and as well inspired in turn by much of Transhumanist discourse and visions.
But then, despite decades of efforts expended in the direction both of technology transfer and indigenous innovation, the mass of humanity known as Africa still presents an unpleasant “left behind” tale of technological backwardness relative to other more advanced societies of the world. The attendant and consequential social, economic, environmental, cultural, etc., problems resulting from this crippling conditions in technological infrastructure comprise a bitter, open sore of a Continent paradoxically bustling with an abundance of potential for much better fortunes.
Now, not to sound in the cliche of tiresome motivational speakers, but yes, there is a kind of thinking that sees problems as, well, problems, and there is that other type that embrace problems as opportunities for positive change.
So, enter the ingenuous Transdiciplinary Agora for Future Discussions (TAFFDs) and its revolutionary “International Conference of Techno-Scientific Awareness in Solving 21st Century Problems”. For a taste, this conference, taking place between the 7th-11th October, 2019 at the University of Rwanda, comes with much promise in its design to have several world renowned industry experts, inventors, policy-makers, scholars, futurists and transhumanists all converging in the African city of Kigali, Rwanda, to brainstorm, exhibit innovations, exchange ideas, provide and deliberate on solutions, and pull together towards “inventing” a new future for Africa.
Adding further substance to this intervention of an event is an impressive line-up of global delegates: the Association of Professional Futurists, the Transhumanist Party, the International Institute of Forecasters, Singularity University, Lifeboat Foundation, Kurzweil Technologies, and much more of the finest and most credible in the tech and development industry.
It is said that for a revolution you need more than problems and weapons, but most importantly an idea (or ideas). A window of opportunity in ideas hereby opens through this seminal meeting for Africa to translate problems into solutions that would locate it on a trajectory for participation in the Fourth Industrial Revolution, as well as secure for it a seat aboard the train headed for a transhuman era of civilization. Good news is, a league of vanguards are prepared to peep through, leap through, and lead on.
Just yesterday a friend of mine queried: “What can Transhumanism contribute to African development?” And for me, this drove home the fact that it is precisely for this concern that I shall be going to Rwanda come October.
Get your conference tickets to be a part of this moment, or alternatively follow TAFFDs on social media and website to stay in the know on how a revolution got born.