Posted by: Dan | April 6, 2007

Contest: Humanity’s Greatest Challenge

Zannel and the X Prize Foundation have announced a contest, where they are asking for:

people to upload short videos about what they think are the biggest issues/challenges facing humanity today. These can be science related, social, technological, or anything really. The X Prize foundation will use these video suggestions as they develop what will either be multi-million dollar challenge, or several challenges totaling a big amount of sum. They will even select a winner from our contest to be flown out to their Wirefly Cup later this year to see rockets and curious vehicles fly across the New Mexico desert.

Or, put another way:

The X PRIZE Foundation is always looking for new ideas around what people consider to be the largest, most challenging issues facing humankind today, and this is our “soap box” for you to be heard. Tell us what grand challenges you think the world ought to be thinking about. And while we’re interested in the opinions of individuals, we’re also interested in the opinions of the group. An X PRIZE committee will review the videos that receive the most votes to determine a winner.

There are so many challenges facing humanity today, however, I wouldn’t know where to start, even if I had a video cam. Is the greatest challenge facing humanity radical fundamentalism (be it Islamic or Christian)?; American imperialism?; lack of educational services?; overpopulation, overconsumption and overcomplacency?; or something else?

I think that it’s a little bit of all of the above, personally.



  1. Our greatest challenge may in fact be “the clock”. There are so many challenges that we must begin to make room for the possibility that we will run out of time before we solve for these. I think we are most in need of a new mind. As Albert Einstein said, “we can no longer solve the problems we have with the same mind that created them, what we are in need of is a new mind” So, how will we gain access to a new mind? My sense is we would be best served to “allow” for it to emerge so we can be sure we are not still creating from our old one! To understand what “allowing” looks like, read Eckhart Tolle.


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