Futurologists, or visionaries, analyze the trends of the present in order to predict how they will perform in the future in a particular field. Futurists are considered researchers, inventors, businessmen like Elon Musk or Bill Gates. Initially, the term appeared in 1943 and designated the social discipline "philosophy of the future". It wasn't until the 1970s that futurology began to be understood as practical research into the future.

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One of the most famous futurists of the present is the American Ray Kurzweil. 86% of all his predictions have come true to one degree or another. He predicted the collapse of the Soviet Union, the development of the Internet and artificial intelligence. Several years ago, Kurzweil speculated on the emergence of a full Wi-Fi network that would be available worldwide. After a while, Elon Musk announced his intention to launch an Internet network in space, to which residents of all countries could connect.

The methods of futurists are diverse: from qualitative historical analysis to the construction of complex mathematical models. A fortune teller degree can be obtained from the Free University of Berlin, the University of Houston, or Hawaii. So far, Russian universities offer courses in analysis and strategic thinking or programs for predicting the future as part of further training.

In Russia, since 2010, there is the Association of Futurologists - an association of scientist-philosophers engaged in future research and the study of global transformations. Experts of the Association work in conjunction with the Department of Information Technology in Moscow, predict nine new technologies for the agro-industrial complex, and paint pictures of the future.

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Futurology is mainly engaged by philosophers, explains Oleg Dolgitsky, an expert in developing digital skills using the resources and services of the digital economy. One of the tasks of philosophy, in particular the philosophy of science, is the most comprehensive collection of all available scientific data and attempts to integrate it into certain models in order to form theories, or to obtain information from them. that allow us to expand our modern scientific paradigm.

“When he is formed by a philosopher, he begins to assume the development patterns of modern science and the future trends that will determine it. This is how predictions arise.

In early 2021, the literature actively predicted the development of science towards cyberpunk - the development of the technological sphere, including microrobots, displacement - and biopunk - the creation of viruses, vaccines against immortality, the tissue of impression, of molecules. Until recently, it was believed that humanity was actively moving towards cyberpunk, the most prominent example being the development of prosthetics. But futurists have predicted that evolution to biopunk is more likely. And now their full attention was captured by the biomedical leadership, even though no one imagined this development of events. It turned out that due to the pandemic, the development of all biomedical fields has been actively accelerated. The

The famous Russian futurist, coordinator of the Association of Futurologists Vladimir Kishinets says that futurology can be given several general definitions. For example, it is the forecasting, based on the study of general development models, of the global humanitarian consequences of the introduction of new technologies that significantly affect human existence. Futurology is a synthetic discipline, the goal of which is to predict the creation of new technologies and to analyze their impact on the development of civilization. These definitions make it possible to distinguish futurology from many other fields of forecasting, for example, foresight. Current political and economic forecasts, science fiction, all kinds of "How to rebuild the world" level projects, harvest forecasts, prophecies of "clairvoyants", descriptions of gadgets that are not due for release. futurology.

The resident of Chisinau explains that futurology faces a serious problem - no one cares about its methodology, without which it is nothing more than entertaining fiction. “Today, the whole theory of futurological forecasting has been reduced to a virtually thoughtless replication of ancient delusions, nonsense and urban myths gleaned from Wikipedia. In this situation, there was no choice but to tackle the description of the characteristics, capabilities, and limitations of global forecasting under the general title “Principles of Futurology”. Today, work on this book is still in progress."With all the important advancements that future technologies promise us, the expert is sure: the most important will be what can be called bio revolution - the creation of fundamentally new medical biotechnologies that will save people from disease, aging, etc.

Futurology: science or fantasy?

In the public mind, futurology is associated more with science fiction than a serious methodological approach to determining the future. Oleg Dolgitsky confirms that futurology is really not a strictly scientific discipline. It is a distinct component of the profession of scientist-philosopher. The task of futurology is to predict trends that might arise in the future. A similar predictive methodology is a foresight, when a group of scientists, over a period of time, interdisciplinary thinks in which direction the future will move in different fields: from telemedicine to the problem of arctic zones. This methodology is applicable to very narrow and rather economic areas. It is fair to speak directly of futurology as a phenomenon that arises in the process of scientific work.

Don't blindly believe headlines like "Futurists Predict How To Solve Hunger." This is how they promote themselves. True futurology is in close contact with the work of philosophers, only as an aspect of more complex scientific work.
Oleg Dolgitsky

Several characteristics nevertheless allow us to speak of a fairly high degree of "scientific character" of futurology, Vladimir Kishinets is sure of it. The overall history of the development of human civilization is not made by chance and does not even depend on the will of people, but according to objective laws determined exclusively by the physical properties of the world. Therefore, the disclosure of these laws is the most important task of futurology, the solution of which should ensure the reliability of its predictions. The second mandatory moment in the construction of models of future events is based only on reliable facts, a full justification of the conclusions, and their critical analysis.

According to the expert, Russian futurology is in decline today. This is associated with the contempt for the development of future analysis at the state level. The profession of futurist can be mastered like any other if there is an inclination for it and a certain background, underlines Chisinau. “If a person is confidently oriented in natural sciences and technologies, and also has some socio-psychological knowledge and life experience, one can start to engage in futurology. Experts in this field today, in this time of turbulent transition, are vital. "