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    Café of Ideas is supported by Hubspace - the hub of your online world
    Café of Ideas is supported by Mark McKergow / The Centre for Solutions Focus at Work
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    Café if Ideas is led by Pete Francomb - webby techy business guy
  • A member of:
    Café of Ideas is a member of Creative Bath - linking the creative industries in and around Bath

Main Content

Matrix or Metropolis?

How will emerging technologies impact our lives in the coming century?


Thursday 26 March 2009


7pm - 10pm


Chapel Arts Centre, Main Studio, Chapel Arts, Lower Borough Walls, Bath, BA1 1QR, United Kingdom

Illustration by Lee Nutland

Scroll down for photos and participants' comments.

What might be the technological developments that we see in the coming century? Spacecraft propelled by antimatter? Elevators up to space? Invisible nanobots cleaning the carpet? The ability to download and digitally store a human consciousness? And how might technology help us overcome the challenges the human race now faces? These are the questions we be explored within our usual mix of entertainment, great food, drink and panel-led discussion.

On The Panel We Had

Kathy Hinde, successful Bristol-based artist and regular collaborator not only with other artists but also with "super-geeks" together with whom she creates exciting and technically challenging installations. As well as participating on the panel, Kathy will be showing work at this event.

Molly van der Weij, (Dutch) professional visual artist who applies her skills for futures work. She was for several years leader of Futures Studies at the Norwegian Centre for Telemedicine in North Norway, where she worked on many multidisciplinary projects related to applying new technologies for healthcare services. She translates complex knowledge and abstract ideas into visuals, which play an important role in communicating to a wider public.

Gareth L Powell is an acclaimed science fiction writer from the West Country. His short stories have been published all over the world and translated into seven languages. In 2007, he won the Interzone Readers’ Poll for best short story of the year, and in August 2008, Elastic Press published his first collection of short fiction, "The Last Reef and Other Stories". In addition to writing fiction, Gareth has spent a decade working in the marketing and communications industry.

Clive de Carle has been a businessman who once imported cars from Japan, then built up and sold the UK's largest chain of opticians. Until recently he was advising the head of the world's largest hedge fund and claims they would have saved billions if they'd listened to him. He's now focussing on finding and disseminating practical solutions to the world's current issues, including the so-called financial crisis. He states "The solutions are right there in front of us. We can easily move to a world of fairness and abundance if only we could see that we can". Clive is also currently organising a "What they didn't teach you at school" event for 16-18 year olds.

The Entertainment Was

The techno-artistic work of Kathy Hinde.

Live music from 7 Days of Sleep.

A Big Thank You To

Martin Tompkins for the photography, Alexia Tucker for production managing the event (among many other things), Jenna Graves of Snowglobe Events for promotion and consultancy support, Jonathan Turton-Smith for the lighting design, Chapel Arts for the space, SuperMegaActionPlus for the video animation, Thyme for the wonderful food and JR Ryan for the original concept.



"Thank you! I Just wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed myself at the Café of Ideas last Thursday night. I thought it was excellent, really interesting, very relaxed and inspirational too! It should be televised!! Have been spreading the word, and will hopefully see you at the next one!"

Kirstie Long
Full-time Mother, previous career in broadcasting


"Really enjoyed the last one. Really really good. The best one yet."

Martin Tompkins
Photographer, Café of Ideas Partner


"Very good subject matter, very interesting. It's nice to go to something different and unusual. I've often 'heard it all before at other events."

Laura Naylor
Web Designer, Sublime By Design


"A brave initiative and quite interesting with a good mix. I'm planning to come to another one."

Paul Swainbank
Consultant, BT Global Consulting


"Café of Ideas is a VERY GOOD THING."

Karen Wilkinson
Full-time Mother, Café of Ideas Member, Founder of Present Sense


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