The Future is Faster than you Think

In a recent Interview, Peter Diamandis talks about the rapid pace of innovation and how it is about to get a lot quicker. Diamandis has always had a positive outlook on the path of innovation – and although I share his optimism, there is no disputing societies need to map that Path. His ability to explore possible futures is very instructive, as leaders everywhere must understand the potential to advance our human development.

Mr. Diamandis believes we will see more change in the coming decade than we have in the last 100 years. He speaks of the Convergence of building blocks in the science and technology domains which contribute to the quickening pace. I’ve explored this notion of intersections in the past, but with a broadened focus. Convergence is occurring across multiple domains, not just science and technology. That additional convergence across society, economy, geopolitics, environment, philosophy, and business introduces a set of additional accelerants – but they also create obstacles.

In looking at possible futures, here are some of his predictions:

Car ownership will be a thing of the past. You’ll turn your garage into a spare bedroom and your driveway into a rose garden. After breakfast in the morning you will walk towards the front door of your house. Your AI will know your schedule, it will see you moving and it will have an autonomous electric car waiting for you. It will know you didn’t get much sleep last night, so it will have pulled a car with a bed in the back so you can sleep on your way to work. Your commute time will be yours.

Shopping will be handled by repeat purchases done by your AI. To shop for clothes, you will enter a VR shopping mall where you can conjure up a VR fashion show of 100 of your avatars wearing different outfits, to decide what you like. There will be a digital twin for every piece of clothing you own already, so you can see how it would meld with your wardrobe. And if you decide you want something, it will be produced specifically to your size, because you will have a body file of exactly your proportions.

In the area of health, you will have annual full body MRI scans; it will become malpractice not to use AI in diagnosis. It will be health care rather than sick care. It will save money and lives. with regard to climate change, Mr. Diamandis believes that changing human behavior – for example, telling people they have to stop eating fish because of over-fishing – is hard. If we can use cell-grown meat technology to replace over-fishing, we should.

Allowing our creativity to flourish in envisioning these possible futures helps us understand the possibilities and the challenges. It’s an exercise that must get more attention in this very Pivotal Decade.

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