Q&A: Scott Novich on Human Creativity and Technology

If you like music, technology, mind-opening discussions, and the desert, you might want to check out the Further Future festival in Las Vegas April 29 to May 1, 2016. The event will feature artists and speakers from a variety of disciplines (think a mashup of Burning Man, TED Talks, and Coachella), all converging to share a creative space.

We spoke with some of the featured speakers, the world’s leading lights in the fields of business, entrepreneurship, science, wellness, and art, to find out what they’re most excited about. Today, we’re talking to Scott Novich, Co-Founder/CTO of NeoSensory.

What will you speak about at Further Future?

I plan to discuss how our senses give rise to perceptions and how our pre-existing senses can be “hacked” to give rise to entirely new perceptions.

How do you see the role of human creativity evolving in the next 10 years as technology advances?

Technology lowers the barrier between our internal creativity and our external creative output, and has been doing so at a rapidly increasing rate. Take music, for example. Music technology, ever-decreasing costs of computational power, and easy access to information are enabling us to reach a point where just about any sound we can cook up in our heads can be easily translated to a physical sound quickly and on the cheap.


10 years back is when you first started to see free music tutorials through a streaming medium and music. 20-30 years back, software synthesis began to take hold. 30 years before that, it was expensive physical synthesizers and samplers that required hard to access special domain knowledge—not just for music; this translates to all artistic mediums. I look forward to the day when I can output a sound I hear in my head to a speaker system.

What are the most interesting advances in technology that you see impacting the future of human health and fulfillment?

There’s so much that it’s almost hard to take in. My own biases point me toward the coming surge of inexpensive, ubiquitous, accessible human enhancements—from prosthetics that enhance our motor outputs to sensory input devices that will give us entirely new perceptual experiences. Wearables are the tiniest tip of the iceberg of this.


Outside of this, I’m enthusiastically waiting to see how machine learning in healthcare data will advance medicine, whether it’s helping doctors make better snap decisions in the operating room or detecting diseases further in advance. On a more potentially scary note, gene-editing technologies (like CRISPR) could have the most startling effects on humanity in the near future. The barrier to entry to play with these technologies in both knowledge and cost is just about at a point where people can engage with them at home.

For more information about Further Future, head to the site.

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