Soonish is a podcast about the future: How we think and talk about it, what we can do to shape it, and why our best forecasts—and our worst fears—are usually wrong.
Soonish brings you stories about real people inventing and using the emerging technologies that will reshape our world.
The future is never easy to predict, especially in a time of climate volatility, festering economic unease, and dramatic political upheavals around the world.
But the one thing we can depend on is change itself. Since the First Industrial Revolution in the 18th century—and accelerating with the Second in the 19th and the Third in the 20th—improvements in technology have been the biggest force reshaping people's lives.
We can't be sure where technology will take us in the 21st century. But the more carefully we consider the possibilities now, the more easily we'll be able to bend the future toward desirable outcomes—and away from catastrophic ones.
Each episode of Soonish explores a niche of our culture or our economy where technological change will soon force us to make important decisions—as citizens, consumers, or voters.
Early in the first season you'll hear shows about
- what happens when movie directors try to get the future right, but fail
- why monorails are a neglected but still promising form of urban transit
- how technology can improve the museum-going experience
- how entrepreneurs are working to create skilled factory jobs in an age of automation
- who's working to develop and market substitutes for meat from vertebrates
how to Be part of it
You can follow posts from Soonish on Twitter and Facebook, and we can always use your help spreading the word about the show on social media—or just by telling a friend. Word of mouth is the most powerful way to get a new show like Soonish off the ground!
If you like the show, please rate and review it on iTunes. Because iTunes ranks shows based partly on user ratings and reviews, this is one of the most important things you can do to help us reach more listeners.
You can also sign up for the Soonish e-mail newsletter, which goes out twice a month and includes news about the show and reminders about new episodes.
Your comments on past shows and suggestions for new ones are always welcome! Please get in touch.
What people are saying about Soonish
Awesome podcast about tech and the soonish future—@TechCompassion
Discover Soonish—a transporting podcast program about the future, created by @MITPSTS alum @wroush—@MIT_SHASS
@soonishpodcast Love your work - so looking forward to new episodes. A great recommendation from @RadioPublic!—@bmason
What's better, the joy of conversation with @wroush, or being a part of this great episode? Why not both?—@thelonelypalette
Fascinating episode on advanced manufacturing, jobs, and America's place in the world.—@gthuang
Bello Collective #28, February 27, 2017 — Bello's newsletter reviewed Soonish Ep. 1.04, saying: "Ordinarily, shows about the future of factories involve drone delivery services and a spike in unemployment. This episode addresses the positive potentials of reimagining manufacturing—a world in which skilled workers create customized products using high-tech tools that are increasingly available to the average individual. In short, robotizing the assembly line could actually be a good thing."
What's Gimlet co-founder Matt Lieber listening to? — My own future-themed podcast playlist, News from the Future, is one of five lists featured this week by RadioPublic, makers of a great new app for finding and following podcasts. More details here.
Lowenstein's Lens on Wireless — Mark Lowenstein of the consulting firm Mobile Ecosystem plugged Soonish in a February 2017 issue of his newsletter. He called me "one of the foremost science/tech journalists, and a true thought leader." Geez, thanks Mark!
For more info
If you'd like to write about the show or help spread the word, check out the Soonish Swipe File. It's a public document on Google Drive containing relevant links, logos, social media handles, and some pre-written copy that you are welcome to adapt and share.
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I've been inspired and amazed by dozens of great shows from other podcasters, including many relating to technology, culture, science, healthcare, and the future. Here are some of my favorites.