Fight and Lose or Adapt and Shine.
The Inevitable: Understanding the 12 Technological Forces That Will Shape Our Future
I have never been too interested in the internet. Still, no matter if it is a phone, computer, or a car’s touch screen I have an idea how to behave with it. And surely I’m not talking about being a professional, but about having the skills to observe and understand its signals and behavior. Navigation through different pages, settings, and different features is coming from the subconsciousness. Or some other place that I can’t define.
Observing and understanding the technological platforms is like reading but without words. Even tho the software would be in a foreign language, there would most likely be some degree of understanding of what is happening.
Referring to coding, Kevin Kelly writes in his book The Inevitable: Understanding the 12 Technological Forces That Will Shape Our Future that: ‘Our greatest invention in the past 200 years was not a particular gadget or a tool but the invention of the scientific process itself.’
Looking at history, it is obvious that the world is constantly changing. There’s no power that could stop the process. Sometimes the change seems good and sometimes it seems bad, but it is important to remember that the world isn’t black and white. There is no absolute ‘good’ or absolute ‘bad’. Overall: big changes and all their different consequences are impossible to evaluate in advance, in the middle of the change, or even after the change.
We have come a long way thanks to the curiosity of the human mind and the desire to explore more. If we realize that we can do something, we want to do it. Or at least try to do it. No matter if the theory is about drawing a perfect circle or something as crazy as flying, we prefer to have evidence for our theories.
Currently, we have a bunch of people who want to experience where technology can take us. Of course, there’s no need to be involved in everything. But it is still important to remember, that the technology will not downgrade.
Threats of the technological revolution
We don’t have a consensus on what is allowed and what is not. We also don’t have the equipment and/or expertise to monitor everything. Most importantly, we are unable to set laws before new inventions and their new possibilities.
There is no change to fight against technologization, but there is no reason to be blindfolded either. Recently few big corporations banned Donald Trump from their platforms. Marko Pohjosmäki, Producer in Marketing Creative at Rovio Entertainment, thinks that “as like political decisions, the internet can’t move from people to the corporations”. Internet is the biggest platform that humankind has, so it obviously has a lot of political power.
It is the government’s and (hopefully) democratically chosen politicians’ responsibility to regulate the laws for technology. “As history tells us, ‘wild and free’ never ends well.” reminds Pohjosmäki. Politicians should make processes that can keep up with the evolution of the quickly changing technological world. Many of today’s proceedings are way too slow to keep up with rapidly moving technological inventions.
But did the politicians keep up or not, it is sure that no one can band inventing.
Artificial intelligence is getting bigger and bigger part of our society. Most likely robots and/or robots combined with AI will spread in every industry and every workplace. The most exciting thing is, that this hasn’t happened yet.
In the early stages of the internet, the future was already imaginable but presents user expectations were still low. It was the perfect time to explore and try different business ideas. Those who jumped on board of the trend early got a head start of course. Now the exactly same thing is happening with artificial intelligence. And AI is only one part of the ongoing technological revolution!
‘Technology is coming and changing the world. There has never been a better day in the whole history of the world to invent something.’ – Kevin Kelly
Kevin Kelly, the founding executive editor of Wired magazine, and a former editor/publisher of the Whole Earth Review is an author of the book The Inevitable: Understanding the 12 Technological Forces That Will Shape Our Future. We might not want to believe all these forces that Kelly is writing about, but there is no denying that he wouldn’t be an expert on the topic.
As earlier said, we can fight and lose or adapt and shine. After choosing your side wisely, read these with an open mind:
Summary of Kevin Kelly’s technological forces that will shape our future:
Cognifying – Upgrading everything to the next level by adding some artificial intelligence.
Flowing – Instead of individual pages, articles, pictures, etc., there will be more respect for the streams and ‘flows’ of the internet.
Screening – Different kinds of screens everywhere.
Accessing – The trend to own less will continue. Accessing has more benefits than owning.
Sharing – The online publics’ willingness to share is a rising trend.
Filtering – There are so many options (and will be even more) that we need to filter them.
Remixing – The most important cultural works and the most powerful mediums will be those that have been remixed the most.
Interacting – We will start to equip our devices with different features so that they can interact.
Tracking – Anything that can be tracked, will be tracked. At least by someone in somewhere.
Questioning – Every year humans ask the internet over 2 trillion questions. The numbers will increase.
Beginning – The moment in the future, when inhabitants of this planet first linked themselves together and formed one very large thing.
The beauty of today’s world is, that internet, the biggest information source ever made is in access of people. And access to the internet means access to the newest way of making science and inventions. What does it need to be a superhero in today’s world? Only a device that gives you access to the web.
In the future, it is really important to understand the principles of technology. There is no need for knowing how to build a house from design to moldings, but the key is to understand the principles. Like in every specific area, only a few are willing to go really deep inside the topic. Instead of having only the knowledge of how to use the ‘house’ efficiently, in the future, it is general education to know also why the houses have windows and that every house doesn’t need a chimney.
How to keep up?
Marko Pohjosmäki, how to keep up with the technological evolution without using too much time on a continuous study of the subject? ‘Keep the main focus on following your own professional field or interests, but surround yourself with people from different points of interest. Share your own knowledge, and at the same time, be interested and ask about other’s knowledge.’
A general interest in the world around you should keep you on track of the development. However, being on the front lines of the development might mean some occasional ‘boring’ study minutes. But it will be worth it.