Emerge 2016

April 29, 2016, 5-10pm | Wells Fargo Arena



Emerge: Artists + Scientists Redesign the Future, is the smartest and most surprising carnival in America that brings together artists, engineers, dancers, scientists, storytellers, athletes, ethicists and technologists to imagine and build futures in which we can thrive. It is a flagship enterprise of Arizona State University – America’s most innovative, according to U.S. News, ahead of Stanford and MIT. This free event is open to all; RSVP here: http://bit.ly/2016EmergeRSVP.

Emerge pioneers a formidable new means of storytelling – “visitations from the future.” These mind-quakes fire in the audience:

• Blown minds – as we explore the consequences, disruptions and opportunities of technological, social and cultural transformation; and
• Penetrating questions – about our astonishing futures; and
• Deep focus on how we can and will build the futures we crave.

Emerge is a year-round enterprise the climax of which on April 29th in metro Phoenix attracts thousands from all over the region and the world.
Emerge is not about the latest gizmos. It’s about how our creations are changing what it means to be human. And how we can prevail.
Others show you toys. ASU’s Emerge shows you what they mean. And that’s cool.

Emerge’s theme for 2016 is “The Future of Sport 2040.” Humans are competitive animals. Wrestling precedes homo sapiens. Those who could most accurately throw sharp rocks bound to sticks created our species. Sport is iconic art to this day.

Sport brings passion.  It is both a marvelous conversation starter and unifier among humanists and technologists.

What values do we want in sport in the future?  Do we want to be more individualized – driven by Fitbits?  Or more cooperative?  If sport as a technology and community driver was old news even to the ancient Greeks, in 2040 do we want brain-implant mind-melded teams?  Or mind-sharing fans?

Our Brain Trust is planning visitations that bring profound questions to vibrant, raucous life, including:

• Will big data predict the future? If Moneyball was revolutionary for finding overlooked value in past performance, will coming algorithms reliably anticipate the future?
• The future of human enhancement. Featuring today’s astonishing ParaOlympians whose slogans include “Sport doesn’t care who you are,” and “Disabled or super-human?”
• New sport 2040. If the big three sports of the 1920s were baseball, horse-racing and boxing, will 2040 include quidditch on hoverboards?  Smart balls? Low G sport on Mars?
 The rise of intentional danger in sport 2040. If we conquer concussions and other perils, will some actively seek out more threat in their sport action?  “Hunger Games” for real?
• Sport and fashion 2040. Color changing?  Light canceling?  Dynamic camouflage?  Shape shifting?  Interactive?  Not just for players, but especially the fans?
• The future of fun 2040. Winning is not  Good times matter.  A lot.  What will future playgrounds for kids and alleged adults look like?
• The future of stadiums. Humans will always love to come together to share intense emotion.  What does Las Vegas tell us about the future of our arenas?
• The future of simulation and virtuality. Fantasy football is only the beginning.  Will future sport have as many meanings as Orson Scott Card’s “Ender’s Game”?

The goal of Emerge is to build a radically creative, playful and challenging approach to our boundary-obliterating and incisive visitations from the future.  And then present them in a massively public way.  We raise difficult issues and spark people to think for themselves.  We don’t just talk about the future, we build it – through physical and digital installations, engineered constructions, interactive pieces, performance art, scientific extravaganzas, sculpture, video art, games and dance.

Emerge is an observation deck on the future.  We challenge people to express novel ideas in important ways.  You can’t have better futures without better dreams.

This is not all games and giggles.  We are at an inflection point in history.  For the first time, our species is taking control of all of matter, energy, and even biology.  The core question is not what we can do, but what we should do. That’s the significance of Emerge bringing together artists and scientists.  There is no one path to truth. We’re playing for the highest possible stakes here.  Emerge goes where few imaginations have gone before.

To see the magic we created in 2015, check out our archives here!

Join us in 2016!

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