12 Events That Would Change Everything

Someone at Scientific American had a magnificent idea: come up with a list of 12 plausible events with the biggest potential to shake up our world.

It is not difficult to identify such monumental events in the past, but harder than it seems when we try to gauge the relative importance (and likelihood) of things to come.

Here is what Scientific American came up with for an interactive web-only special:

1. Polar meltdown
2. The proof for additional dimensions
3. Proof for extraterrestrial life
4. An exchange of nuclear strikes
5. The creation of fully synthetic life
6. Superconducitvity at room temperature
7.  Machines demonstrating self-awareness
8. Cloning of a human
9. A really large earthquake along the Pacific Rim
10. Usable fusion reactors
11. A collision with a large asteroid
12. A deadly pandemic

A great list! Except, I don’t think human cloning is a big deal. We already have nature’s way of producing genetically identical humans (identical twins). So perhaps I would replace No. 8 with any of the following:

• Ability to switch off the biological aging mechanism
• Construction of a bionic uterus; extra-corporal gestation
• A working theory uniting Relativity & Quantum Mechanics
• Drugs which significantly decrease the need for sleep
• Fully reversible vasectomies and tubal ligations
• Ability to grow organs and tissues from stem cells
• Solid evidence for / against the life of Jesus Christ
• Technical applications for Quantum Entanglement

Now that I think about it, I’d like to expand the entire list! Food for thought? What would you add or remove?

For more in-depth information on the items on Scientific American’s list, please follow the link below. I seriously doubt that it will run equally well on all systems and browsers, but it is well worth the try.

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=interactive-12-events

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