I have found a new favourite podcast (although it’s one amongst many favourites, if I’m honest). It’s called “Meanwhile in the future“, and the premise is as follows:
- Take a future innovation/reality as imagined by a dystopian science-fiction writer (much like the ones that seemed to predict smartphones, etc); and
- Evaluate their likelihood and implications (economic, social and otherwise) by discussing them with experts/scientists.
It’s very cleverly done. And the episode called “Facetime” is definitely the subject of a future blog post.
But if you’re looking for short interesting thought experiments, you should check it out.
In the meantime, someone else’s predictions:
I’m not entirely sure where those probabilities came from. But still fun to think about.
That said, as a Friday side note, I’m unconvinced by the “people marrying robotic partners” prediction – because that seems like same-sex marriage paranoia, which I have no patience with. Same-sex marriage, as a civil institution, allows gay men and women to have formal right of access to their hospitalised partners, as well as preventing them from being kicked out of their home by callous blood-relatives in the event of their partner’s death. The fight for equality is about more than just a title – it is about legal rights that are denied on the basis of a person’s gender. Implying that “giving rights to a person” will one day lead to those rights being granted to an inanimate object is as nonsensical as saying that lowering the legal drinking age from 21 years old to 18 will one day lead to newly-born infants demanding bourbon in their breast milk.
We need to be a bit more serious with “slippery slope” arguments. It’s lazy. And it favours the status quo for no reason other than a fear of changing the status quo.
Anyway. Side-note over. And have a great weekend!