About Heather


My name is Heather Schlegel and I am a futurist. Most people know me by my apt moniker, heathervescent.

I am a social scientist who studies future trends to help people understand and take advantage of change. I do this through speaking, consulting, research projects, design fictions and media productions. My company, The Purple Tornado, has been around since 2006.

Prior to The Purple Tornado, I helped build and launch more than 50 Internet products at over 30 startups from 1996 to the 2005 in Silicon Valley and Los Angeles. Recently, I completed an assignment with the Swift Innovation Team, Innotribe, based in New York, NY and La Hulpe, Brussels.

I am best known for my research on the Future of Transactions, which I presented at SxSW, Sibos, TedxZwolle, The Future of Money, Tomorrow’s Transactions and other conferences around the world.

I am the producer and creator of 4 short films, including “Fly Me to the Moon;” nominated for Most Important Futures Award by the Association of Professional Futurists, 2012; “Flowers for Grandma;” “Innotribe Startup Challenge Documentary” and “Slices of Life.”

Recent Credits include:

  • The Human Problem, 1st Place, Association of Professional Futurists, 2013
  • “The Next Money” in the Atlantic, 2012
  • “Virtual Currencies” interview in Stealth Publication, 2011
  • “The Future of Money” in Infomilio, Sibos, 2011

My specialty research areas include

  • Financial Innovation
  • Future of Transactions
  • Bitcoin
  • Complimentary Currencies
  • Future of Shopping
  • Mobile Medicine
  • Wildcards and Black Swans
  • Future of Intimacy
  • Relationship trends
  • The impact of changing Demographics

I am excited by possibilities that embrace and extend existing paradigms into new business markets using technology to positively impact the lives of billions of people.

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We must not be afraid of dreaming the seemingly impossible if we want the seemingly impossible to become a reality.
– Vaclav Havel, Award winner Czech President and Essayist

We are at the very beginning of time for the human race. It is not unreasonable that we grapple with problems. But there are tens of thousands of years in the future. Our responsibility is to do what we can, learn what we can, improve the solutions, and pass them on.
― Richard P. Feynman