New Year 2009: Leading thinkers offer predictions of 'next big thing'

[ Thu. Jan. 1. 2009 ]

Leading thinkers - includingCraig Venter and Ian McEwan - have marked New Year 2009 by predicting what will be the next big thing to shape the future.

[PHOTO: IAN MCKEWAN/PHILIP HOLLIS]

[Caption: Ian McEwan: predicts the full flourishing of solar technology as one of the next 'big things']

A 150-strong group of scientists, authors, musicians, philosophers and other respected experts were posed the question "What will change everything?"

Their task was set by Edge, an online intellectual discussion group, which claims its membership comprises "the most interesting minds in the world".

The responses spanned new methods of energy production, the dawn of telepathy, freely available artificial intelligence and the colonisation of the Milky Way."