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“America risks being left behind in the global economy: Revolutionary advances in information technology, biotechnology, nanotechnology and other fields are reshaping the global economy. Without renewed efforts, the United States risks losing leadership in science, technology and innovation. ”
Sonal Shah works for Google.org on their Global Development team, where she is working on defining their global development strategy. Prior to Google.org, she was Vice President at Goldman, Sachs and Co. and developed and implemented the firm’s environmental strategy. She is also the co-founder of Indicorps, a U.S.-based non-profit organization offering one-year fellowships for Americans of Indian origin to work on specific development projects in India. As the former Associate Director for Economic and National Security Policy at the Center for American Progress, Sonal worked on trade, outsourcing and post conflict reconstruction issues. Prior to joining the Center, she was the Director of Programs and Operations at the Center for Global Development managing the daily operations and serving as a strategic adviser to the president. She also developed and managed policy and advocacy programs for the Center. Before that she worked for eight years at the Department of Treasury on various economic issues and regions of the world. She was the Director of the office covering sub Saharan Africa, worked in Bosnia and Kosovo after the war, and served as the senior adviser to the Under Secretary and Assistant Secretary at the Department of Treasury during the Asian financial crisis.
On April 2009, Shah was appointed director of the newly created White House Office of Social Innovation and Civic Participation.  The objective of this office is to coordinate governmental efforts to aid innovative nonprofit groups and social entrepreneurs to address pressing social problems. Shah is also working with the National Security Council to bring a global perspective to these efforts .
A former Googler--he was their Head of Public Policy--he's been hired by the Obama administration as the White House's Deputy Chief Technology Officer, invoking the wrath of a House Oversight Committee member in the process. Rep. Darrell Issa has written to Google to demand an explanation as to how McLaughlin could have "used his personal email account to engage in official business, including discussions on policy matters under his review with Google."
It's not the first time that Google's doings in Washington have hit the headlines--but perhaps it is the first time that Google is being attacked from all sides. Its lobbying spend for the first quarter of 2010--$1.3 million--was released three months ago, and set on by Consumer Watchdog's John Simpson. The non-profit, non-partisan organization has its own Inside Google website, which last week scored a hit on the firm via its data-collecting methods.
The report claims that national security may have been compromised by "WiSpy snooping," as a member of the Homeland Security Committee had a wireless network that "could have been breached by Google." The organization wrote letters (.pdf file) to Congressmen, including Jane Harman of the HSC, and described the breach as "one of the biggest wire-tapping scandals in U.S. history."
McLaughlin, whose appointment last month ruffled the feathers of a lot of people, is not the first person to swap Mountain View for a view from the Hill. Ex Google employees include Sonal Shah, head of the White House Office of Social Innovation, and its director of citizen participation, Katie Jacobs Stanton is bouncing back to the West Coast to head up Twitter's international strategy. And of course there's Eric Schmidt, who is an enthusiastic cheerleader of the FCC's National Broadband Strategy, as well as one of Obama's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology.
Reporting from San Francisco — Katie Jacobs Stanton, a former Google Inc. veteran who took White House and State Department jobs in the Obama administration, is returning to California to join Twitter Inc.
Stanton worked on new-media strategies for President Obama's 2008 campaign, served as White House director of citizen participation and in December began helping the State Department use social media in international diplomacy and aid. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has focused on Internet freedom as an important plank of U.S. foreign policy.
We are starting to live through two patterns of change. The first is the enormous computer and communications revolution described above. The second, only now beginning to rise, is the combination of the nanotechnology-biology-information revolution. These two S curves will overlap. It is the overlapping period that we are just beginning to enter, and it is that period that I believe will be an Age of Transitions.
Focusing on computers and communications is only the first step toward understanding the Age of Transitions. While we are still in the early stages of the computer-communications pattern of change, we are already beginning to see a new, even more powerful pattern of change that will be built on a synergistic interaction between three different areas: the nano world, biology, and information.
The sciences have reached a watershed at which they must combine in order to advance most rapidly. The new renaissance must be based on a holistic view of science and technology that envisions new technical possibilities and focuses on people. The unification of science and technology can yield results over the next two decades on the basis of four key principles: material unity at the nanoscale, NBIC transforming tools, hierarchical systems, and improvement of human performance.
Gingrich revealed to Congress: “For a long time, I have been friends with Alvin and Heidi Toffler, the authors of ‘Future Shock’ and ‘The Third Wave.’ (3)
“I first began working with the Tofflers in the early 1970s on a concept called anticipatory democracy. I was then a young assistant professor at West Georgia State College, and I was fascinated with the intersection of history and the future, which is the essence of politics and government at its best.
“For twenty years we [who's we?] have worked to develop a future-conscious politics and popular understanding that would make it easier for America to make the transition from the Second Wave civilization [the one our Founders gave us] – which is clearly dying – to the emerging, but in many ways undefined, Third Wave civilization [Alvin Toffler's Centrist Utopia].
“The process has been more frustrating and the progress much slower than I would have guessed two decades ago. Yet despite the frustrations, the development of a Third Wave political and governmental system is so central to the future of freedom and the future of America that it must be undertaken.” (4)
So central, so critical indeed, that Mr. Gingrich put the book on a recommended reading list for members of Congress and all Americans. And mind you, he wouldn’t let go of it. In speech after speech and press conference after press conference Gingrich referred to “The Third Wave” as “the seminal work of our time.” (5)
For those who hadn’t read it or who knew nothing about the Third Way/ Third Wave (he used both names) Gingrich delivered a few extra hints of where the Third Way was taking him.
“While I am a Republican leader in the Congress, I do not believe Republicans or the Congress have a monopoly on solving problems and helping America make the transformation necessary to enter the Third Wave information revolution. Democratic mayors like Norquist in Milwaukee and Rendel in Philadelphia are making real breakthroughs at the city level. Some of the best of Vice President Gore’s efforts to reinvent government nibble in the right direction. …” (6)
The sad truth is that we do not have the resources to spread this new techno enlightenment to all of humanity
"It seems like a very long time ago now since I was in the House and the Senate, working on legislation related to supercomputing," Gore said. He reminded everyone that he was at the first SC event in 1988, when he was a senator from Tennessee - home to the "Jaguar" 1.76 petaflops Opteron-Linux super that now ranks number one in the world - and had just left the House Science Committee that had funded much of national supercomputing labs and the high-speed Internet links between them.
"Supercomputing has given us the most powerful tool in the history of civilisation," Gore said. "It has become a third basic form of knowledge creation, alongside inductive reasoning and deductive reasoning. Computational science, in some ways a blend of the first two, allows us to vastly extend our ability to understand phenomena and complex realities, and investigate new complex realities that would never be possible except for the ability conferred upon us by supercomputing."
Climate modelling aided by supercomputing, however, can "make impossibly large phenomena small enough to see, and impossibly small phenomena large enough for us humans to see," and thus induce the type of visceral reactions that spur political change, Gore said.
"That has profound implications for how we approach the interface between this incredibly powerful tool you are continuing to develop, and the political decisions that have to be made based on computational science," Gore said. "One of the remaining challenges is how we as human beings individually, and for my purposes collectively in democracy and political systems relate as human beings to the incredibly powerful tool of supercomputing."
The audience was filled with Silicon Valley luminaries: Apple's Steve Jobs; Google's Larry Page and Eric Schmidt; Internet godfather Vint Cerf; Yahoo!'s Jerry Yang; venture capitalists John Doerr, Bill Draper, and Vinod Khosla; former Clinton administration defense secretary William Perry; and a cross section of CEOs, startup artists, techies, tinkerers, philanthropists, and investors of every political and ethnic stripe.
The goal: to enlist the assembled leaders in finding market-driven, technological solutions to global warming and then, in quintessential Silicon Valley style, to rapidly disseminate their ideas and change the world. "I need your help here," an emotional Gore pleaded at the end of the evening. "Working together, we can find the technologies and the political will to solve this problem." The crowd fell hard. "People were surprised," says Wendy Schmidt, who helped organize the event and, with her husband, Google CEO Eric Schmidt, supported Gore's 2000 presidential campaign. www.wired.com...
Originally posted by Korg Trinity
I'm all for Transhumanism...
I'm all for the Technological Singularity...
I have spent my whole life looking forward to the technologies you have pointed at...
Originally posted by Aliensun
The ETs with their vastly superior knowledge of how civilizations advance and decline across the Universe have doubtlessly given our crucial world leaders a stern message if not exact orders.
Originally posted by Korg Trinity
I can't wait to reach my 250th birthday and still be a spring chicken... I am looking forward to having questions and being able to interrogate all of human knowledge in a fraction of a nanosecond... I am waiting the day when I can shape my own reality with ultra-definition.
Originally posted by IgnoranceIsntBlisss
Go for it... but first we have to stop this tyrannical system that has no intentions of letting outsiders participate, and intend to enslave us all with it.