I recently completed an article for the HPC conference held in Cetraro, Italy, in 2006. (Ok, I was a little late.) I took the opportunity to talk about how a topic that I find fascinating, namely the vision and legacy of JCR Licklider. The abstract:
Licklider advocated in 1960 the construction of computers capable of working symbiotically with humans to address problems not easily addressed by humans working alone. Since that time, many of the advances that he envisioned have been achieved, yet the time spent by human problem solvers in mundane activities remains large. I propose here four areas in which improved tools can further advance the goal of enhancing human intellect: services, provenance, knowledge communities, and automation of problem-solving protocols.
Needless to say, I could hardly do justice to such a grand topic, but perhaps my comments will spur some interesting thoughts and responses.