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The Scientific Guide to Your Future Life

The Scientific Guide to Your Future Life

The Scientific Guide to Your Future Life

From smartphones to smart homes, technology and scientific breakthroughs are revolutionising our lives. In this new BBC Focus Special Edition discover the big innovations that will change your world in the years to come. IN THIS ISSUE… - Home: 3D printers, robot butlers - Food: lab-grown burgers, dodo kebabs - Health: beat cancer, live to 100-plus - Travel: drones, driverless cars, jetpacks

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United Kingdom
Immediate Media Company London Limited
R 164,07

in this issue

7 min
how science will help you live to 100 and beyond…

What if you could live past 100? Would you want to? These are questions we might all need to consider. In recent years some of the world’s highest-profile pioneers have turned their attentions to finding the genes that could make us live forever. Their aim: to hunt down the illnesses that affect us in old age. The leader in this race to help us live longer is Craig Venter: the geneticist, entrepreneur and philanthropist behind the Human Genome Project. In 2014, he announced that he was investing $70 million (£53m) of venture capital to set up Human Longevity Inc (HLI). But Venter isn’t alone. In September 2013, Google CEO Larry Page revealed that he’d appointed Art Levinson, chairman of Apple and biotechnology company Genentech, as CEO of Google Calico (California Life Company).…

2 min
how could driverless cars change motoring?

PARKING Some cars already have ‘parking assistance’ that allows the vehicle to manoeuvre itself into tight spots. But they require the driver to be there ‘just in case’. If a driverless vehicle could be trusted to park itself, it could drop you off at your destination and find a space on its own. LEARNING TO DRIVE It’s likely that anyone operating a vehicle, autonomous or not, will still require some sort of training in order to do so. But the arrival of autonomous vehicles is expected to result in changes to the Highway Code and possibly the skills taught while a new driver is learning. TAXIS If a car can take you anywhere without you having to drive, why do we need taxi drivers? Uber has stated that its plan is to eventually operate an…

8 min
the future of   food

Diet can be a contentious issue, subject to the forces of personal ethics, religious beliefs and health concerns. In recent years, scientists and the public have become increasingly aware that the food we eat can have negative impacts on the planet. According to figures from the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR), one-third of our greenhouse gas emissions come from agriculture. But that’s just one factor. Our food system is also the leading cause of deforestation, land use change and biodiversity loss in the world. Then there’s overfishing, pollution, groundwater depletion, excessive fertiliser use and pesticides to contend with as well. With all these issues to consider, a ‘sustainable’ diet might mean different things depending on who you talk to. However, certain trends cut through the noise – most notably,…

3 min
are we on the brink of beating cancer?

In 1971, US President Richard Nixon declared a war on cancer, proclaiming that the time had come “when the same kind of concentrated effort that split the atom and took man to the Moon should be turned toward conquering this dreaded disease.” Billons of research dollars later, are we winning the war? According to a report from Macmillan Cancer Support, people in 2016 are twice as likely to survive 10 years after a cancer diagnosis than at the start of the 1970s. Today, 69 per cent of women with breast cancer survive for seven years or more, and their chances of survival have doubled since the 1970s. Seemingly every week brings news of another breakthrough. And, Cancer Research UK feels confident enough to state that by 2034, three in four people will…

9 min
mind machines

You get back from work, crash out on the sofa and pick a track from your favourite playlist. Without moving from that spot you start heating up the oven to cook dinner before beginning a conversation with your friend who lives on the other side of town. You do all this without ever saying a word or pressing a single button. How did anyone get anything done before brain interfaces? The idea that we could run our lives from inside our heads is, obviously, a fantasy, but there are those who are attempting to make it a reality. In 2017, SpaceX and Tesla billionaire Elon Musk announced a new venture, Neuralink. Its aim: to build a high-bandwidth, implantable brain-computer interface that will enable us to be permanently online and allow us…

1 min
what will the new age of medicine look like?

STEM CELL THERAPIES As we age our stem cells are depleted and degraded. But a new stem cell treatment suggests we may be able to reverse the process of ageing. ‘Switching on’ four genes associated with stem cells appeared to reverse some signs of ageing in both human skin cells and live mice. PERSONALISED MEDICINE Surprisingly, a lot of medications have little or no therapeutic effect on a lot of people. Genomic data could tell us who will respond to a drug and why certain drugs work better for some people than others. It could allow doctors to choose the most effective drugs for patients with the least side effects. PREVENTATIVE MEDICINE If you could find out how long you have le#, would you want to know? You could discover what your genome (human DNA…