Themes: Futurology

Web

Our actions now shape the world around us. The world around us shapes us as children. The children of now become the adults of the future. What might that future look like?

Humanity’s progress in the last century feels like it’s been set to fast-forward. Technology we invented now reinvents us. Babies born in 2013 will spend their whole lives on Facebook. Welcome to the world.

As the forces of globalisation make us more interconnected, economies of access take a stranglehold on real progress. For example, as our reliance on the World Wide Web grows, massive corporations with vested interests like Google, exert massive influence on our lives. This is the economy of access. Access to information. Google categorise, prioritise, censor the information we seek. Our umbilical cords are feeding from the Google placenta.

It’s not just in the realm of technology that these economies of access have taken hold. Think of food, energy, education, healthcare – the bare necessities of our lives are out of our individual control. So do we stride bravely into the future or spiral uncontrollably?

The future looks technological. It looks globalised. It looks multi-faceted, fractured, fluid. We don’t think we should go there blind. We want to turn a spotlight on signs in the present that drop hints about where we’re going. We want to open debate. The point is at least to air caution, at best to turn tides. We will hold onto the siderails and kick our feet as hard as we can before drifting downstream into a future determined by rampant consumerism.