We have a clear choice to make: do we want to be victims or architects of the expansive future that lies ahead?
KNOWLEDGE IS POWER – Throughout history technology and disruption have continually shaped our future. Invariably, those who are excited by change are open to learning new tricks; they are ready to run towards the future, and not away from it.
What a time to be alive – our lives are getting better and better. Our access to information is at an all-time high and technology is advancing exponentially. The phrase “Ipsa scientia potestas est”, meaning “Knowledge itself is power” has never been more meaningful.
In a recent blog post by Singularity University, I read that a child in Malawi who has a smartphone and an internet connection, has access to more information than the president of the USA had in 1994.
This democratisation of knowledge is one of the main reasons why we’re moving into an era of “technological socialism” – the idea that technology is breaking the capitalist divides that have previously limited access to products, services and education to those who could pay for it. Trying to imagine that the things we spend money on today will become more affordable (or even free) in the future, is almost as impossible as your grandparents having predicted that they could one day make calls without a landline telephone.
Photography is just one example of how technology has made some commodities more affordable. Old-school cameras were cumbersome, the number of photos you could take was limited and you had to pay to have every photo developed (even the bad ones). Just over a decade ago, we would not have dreamed of having free cameras…on a telephone…that has no buttons. Today, our phones have megapixel cameras and we can take as many photos as we like before sharing them with people all around the world in an instant – for next to nothing.
The proliferation of free Wi-Fi and an inevitable reduction in data costs, mean that technological socialism is already a tangible reality. A quick look into developments within a multitude of industries including energy, transportation, communication, education, entertainment, clothing, food and medical care, will reveal real-life tales of increased efficiency, accessibility, innovation and cost-reduction.
If you feel pressed for time to research the incredible advancements that are shaping our future, there are three key areas to keep a close eye on: quantum computing, artificial intelligence and block chain technology. These are the innovations that are going to fundamentally change the way we work, how we use money and our approach to well-being and longevity. In the next decade, we will also need to swallow hard and grapple with new norms that will come in the form of digital brains (as pioneered by the Swiss Blue Brain Project) and genetically engineered, designer babies.
Granted, some of these innovations may make you want to move to Mars, but although our minds are more prone to resisting change and forming new habits, the choice to adopt new perspectives is ours – do we choose to be excited or damned by this future?
If we take on a victim mindset we will be damned, doomed and ill-prepared, rejecting change and wishing for the old days. But we can also choose to take on a victor mindset, to be the optimist, dreamer, do-er and operator. There are two ways to do this: first, stop feeling sorry for yourself and take responsibly for this incredible reality we will live in. Decide to get excited about change even though your habitual thought-patterns might argue against it. Secondly, expose yourself to this future by being informed about technological and scientific innovations, and then share these insights and the enthusiasm with your family, friends, organisation and community; help everyone prepare to accept change with open arms.
The time to collaborate and empower everyone is here and with these new tools at our disposal, accessing the global village and reaching your individual potential has never been easier. We just have a clear choice to make: do we want to be victims or architects of the expansive future that lies ahead?
The quote “fortune favours the brave” has never been more true – be brave in 2018 and make a fortune by impacting billions of people’s lives in a positive way.