Let me just cluster the different innovations to get a clearer view on them. Also let me denote the amount of research needed to implement the innovation with stars, ranging from 0 stars (implementable now with nearly 0 research) to 5 (super complicated).
- Gift economy (partial)
- Basic income *
- Digital abundance *
- Atomically precise manufacturing *****
- Longevity treatments ****
Computing and intelligence
- Technological telepathy/empathy *** or **** (might require decent nanotechnology, though)
- Artificial general intelligence **** or *****
- Quantum computers *****
- Space based solar power **
- Asteroid mining ***
It looks like the economic innovations are really low-hanging fruit in the sense of disruptive futurist catalysts. It’s mainly a conceptual, psychological, societal, and political challenge to implement them. But doing that could in theory be done very quickly (in reality not so much, otherwise all of us would be using cryptocurrencies by now). And we probably really need that economic boost to get to the other futurist innovations anytime soon.
The role of space is not clear here. Space based solar power and asteroid mining could boost each other, and both could provide a boost for the industry on Earth, but for me it’s hard to say how big that boost would be.
Atomically precise manufacturing is one of the biggest game changers, but developing it seems relatively expensive. It may even turn out to be comparable to the promise of curing cancer quickly by throwing a lot of money on it – in other words: It may fail miserably for decades.
Longevity treatments may be in a similar situation, but I’m a bit more optimistic about them being turned into reality with a few billions of funding behind them.
When it comes to computing and intelligence revolutions, it might be a good idea to pursue networking human minds and creating artificial minds in parallel. One of them will certainly help us to reach a higher level of performance
My overall conclusion is that the economic innovations are the low hanging fruit that don’t really get much attention in the futurist community, because it is obsessed with the “sexy” technological innovations – for which there is little investment money, however, because the overall economy is not really futuristic! So, let’s futurize the economy first, ok?