Future Expectations

      3 Comments on Future Expectations

Here are a bunch of the events that I expect to see within my lifetime.

I expect to see self-driving cars that provide an incredibly faster, cheaper, safer and greener method of transportation than normal cars, and all those characteristics are backed with a ton of data and proof.

I also do not expect to see the day when people finally trust self-driving cars enough to outlaw the use of normal cars even though their drivers are a threat to everyone’s safety.

I expect to see every single job being progressively replaced by machines, yet every single time a job is replaced, the majority of non-replaced workers will keep feeling safe because their job is too hard for a dumb machine to do.

I expect robots to beat us in every single competitive field, from board games to sports, yet people will keep thinking they are better because of some vague idea of a magical undetectable thing called a soul inside them.

Credit: xkcd

I expect to see many periods of ∼5 years starting with someone replacing a certain part of his body with an artificial part on purpose and everyone calling him a weirdo, and ending with the majority of the population having done the same.

I expect to see many world leaders doing a decent job, and many doing a terrible job, yet every single time people will be completely polarized and either love them, hate them or not care about them.

I expect video games and their customers finally getting the respect they deserve after years of being criticized for their hobbies just in time for them to start complaining and insulting the users of the next popular hobby.

I expect to spend most of my life simultaneously thinking that I would be rich if only I had worked harder on my projects in the past and not starting to work harder on my projects in the present.

I expect to see attempts to ban fast-food as a way to fix obesity, and attempts to legalize many drugs because “people find ways to get them anyway so there’s no point in banning them”.

I expect the issue of mass immigration to ironically cause several civil wars between the people of the host countries because they disagree on the level of threat that mass immigration represents.

I expect people to successfully colonize Mars, but almost nobody really being willing to stay there long-term, and therefore Mars turning into some sort of cruise ship-like place, where most workers have terrible life conditions and basically are only there to make the temporary visitors’ experience great.

I expect to write a book someday about something, but it won’t sell because most people don’t give a shit about 95% of the topics that I like to discuss.

I expect to see most controversial issues that we have right now resolved, and for most of them the strawman and slippery slope that were used by the side that lost to look like they came true, simply because the media will focus on those few horrible cases to get views. Exemple: Some religious people saying that legalising gay marriage will lead to legalising marriage with children or animals, then gay marriage gets legalized, then after a few years the media gives much focus to the few cases of lone nutjobs asking for legal zoophilia or pedophilia, so that it looks like the slippery slope was real.

I expect TV to die out. Not the physical television, people will still buy those for the big screen experience when using Netflix or their computer, but cable TV will die out. When you can get any show or movie you want in a few seconds using other services, I really don’t see where the market for fixed schedule is. The ability to pause and records tv shows from cable television only delayed the inevitable, which is fewer and fewer people seeing the need for that.

I expect the previous point to give a huge blow to traditionnal “tv news”, because I don’t see people voluntarily going to watch CNN or FOX with their netflix. Those same mass media might still thrive from online newspapers, but losing that part of their empire will hurt. Logically, I also expect those tv news companies to get more and more hostile towards the previously described phenomenon as time passes, since they definitely know how much it will hurt them.

I expect the “newly out of a job because a robot replaced them” segment of the population to be especially prone to organizing both anti-robot protests because they want their jobs back and pro-robot protests because robots deserve the same rights as we do and should not be enslaved.

I expect those pro robots rights protests to progressively die out because the robots themselves don’t care, and never really get results, so that the day robots become self-aware enough to want rights, nobody is fighting for them and that might be the end of humanity.

I expect schools all over the world to eventually completely switch to teaching actual science and only teach religion in a “Explaining this particular set of belief that some people have” kind of way, as general knowledge of what some people think is true, and not as actual truths.

Haha, no I don’t expect that last one.

  • Kingfisher12

    I’m not all that concerned with robots replacing humans in the workforce, because I think all it does is cause another iteration in a problem as old as society itself. What are other people?

    Robots, even the most human-like or intelligent we can imagine, are tools. As tools, they are extensions of the human that wields them.

    Its easy to imagine a future where wealthy industrialists, owning all the robots, have no more use for weak human flesh, and humanity itself becomes disposable. But this sentiment has always plagued mankind since kings sent peasants out to die for them.

    Harder to imagine (though it shouldn’t be) is a future where every human being has their own magic genie – capable of granting their every material desire, simply at the asking. Some have imagined this, and the imaginings go everywhere from blissed-out lotus-eaters, to boring sense-deaf drones.

    I’m more hopeful of the potential of the human spirit. I think that as we approach a world where material things become trivial, we’ll be forced by our sense of striving to seek the immaterial. I think there will be a renaissance of religion as people – deprived of meaning through material labor – turn to labor on things of what it means to be human.

    Some religions will be suicidal, but some will push humanity towards something – better.

    That’s my hope anyway.

    • Kaito Kid

      To be honest, with or without a job, there are things in life that I would definitely enjoy, regardless of religion. I really can’t see myself ever turning to religion, but that might be because I’ve accepted the idea of life being meaningless a long time ago, so I might as well enjoy it. Material things, like a luxury car or a nice home, might be trivial, and some enjoyments like a vacation at the beach might be unavailable if everyone had unlimited access to it (overcrowding), but there are some things, like watching a movie, playing a game, reading an e-book, that work regardless of the size of the userbase, and would therefore still have their place in a post-scarcity society, even though they are sort of material. At least that’s how I see it.

      • Kingfisher12

        I use religion in the broadest possible sense, and perhaps should have used the term ‘aesthetic’. I just mean that our devotion to aesthetic will become quasi-religious in scope.

        As material things become trivial, aesthetic and sentimentality become the predominant measures of value. Consider a garden. The material value of it is tiny, or even negative – as it requires work and sacrifice to maintain. But as a person gardens, they find the aesthetic and sentimentality of the relationship between human and garden. A robot could do all the work, and produce more perfect shrubs and flowers, but it would, at the same time, destroy the aesthetic value of the garden.

        When we no longer need to work to live, ‘work’ and ‘worship’ will become synonymous.