What follows is an attempt to establish a firm foundation for how we might build a future, grounding it in a clear set of values. I start with a brief definition of knowledge, a term I use extensively and in a way that is somewhat different from common usage. I then explain the relationship between optimism and knowledge, as well as the importance of choices in shaping our future. This is followed by a discussion of why the existence of knowledge provides an objective basis for humanism, which sets it apart from other religious and philosophical narratives. Much of my thinking in this area has been influenced by the writing of David Deutsch, and in particular his book The Beginning of Infinity, which explores the history, philosophy and power of explanations (Deutsch, 2011).