Down the Rabbit Hole
My phone notifications were insistently dinging at me. My hand hovered over my phone as I stopped myself short. I was driving and – immediate safety issues aside – I wanted to model good behavior for my children. When they start driving, I want them to have an example of someone who ignores their phone while the car is in motion.
This thought sent me down quite a mental rabbit hole!
My older son will be driving in 6 years and I wondered just how much technology would be different. Looking back at my life 6 years ago, I can see an incredible evolution. In 2006 I had just delivered a baby. My cell phone was only used for phone calls. I did not use it to text, take pictures, browse the internet or check email. My phone did not connect to any other devices, and while Bluetooth was out there – it wasn’t widely used among my circles.
Today, my phone connects me to my entire life. Email, photography, text, chat, video calls, Google searches, navigation, streaming video. Many new cars today are equipped to integrated with your phone for music, remote start, navigation and a variety of services. I can dial, text and compose thoughts through voice commands on my phone and I’m glued to my Bluetooth headset while driving.
So where will we be in another 6 years? Personally, I think the entire problem of texting and driving will be eliminated by then. I have no access to the secret labs at Apple, Microsoft or Google. It’s pure speculation. The speed of technology evolution is amazing.
Further down the rabbit hole I go….
Will our future look like the Cybermen upgrades found in Doctor Who? Will it be more like the implanted data chips found in Johnny Mnemonic? How about “enhanced reality” leaving a permanent virtual layer over our eyes? Further down the road do you see a Matrix-like submission into virtually-created worlds or a Terminator-like automated intelligence dominance? How about a society without currency, like in Star Trek? What type of future do you see?
Last year I shared this video with friends. One told me he felt this reality was far, far off and cost prohibitive to implement. I told him that this reality is far closer than he can possibly imagine. Today, I think we’re 75% there in retail implementation. There really is an app for almost anything and the cost of computing power has come down so far that “smart appliances” are working their way into the American retail market.
Where do you think we’re headed? What type of future do you see? Better yet, what’s the next game changer, industry revolutionizer? I have trouble imagining the next simple idea that will completely change the way we think and how we live our lives. But I know it’s out there.