As the mariner grows older, his hearing continues to fade. He watches the meaningful television shows, mostly on PBS, but cannot understand the audio portion very well without captions or hearing aids. This is not to say that his ability to think or read has diminished. The mariner knows one thing for certain, though: He will miss the full effect of the new and exciting age of audiovisual technology. It is an exciting age coming toward us as quickly as the wind blows across the prairie.
How we communicate; how we participate in government, retail, and personal decisions about our lives will change. The smart phone is just the beginning. Very soon, entrepreneurs will master cloud technology (simply defined, the ability to maintain your entire life in a database online), It will be as if you had a servant and a parent watching every decision you make.
If you decide to buy a Jaguar instead of a Ford, “it” will know about that aberration and suggest alternatives. A consortium of banks will manage your finances automatically such that you will be unable to go into unreasonable debt.
In entertainment, it will be a glorious release from the constraints of cable where one must buy 200 channels just to watch four. You will be able to shape to a very specific degree what you want to watch – including events that are not part of television as we know it. Three dimensional experiences, where you, the watcher, are part of the action and even able to alter the plot, is not far away.
The future technology will not be limited to your budget and entertainment. Automobiles are within a decade of accident-proof driving. Your grocery purchases will be managed according to your likes and dislikes. Clothing stores will know your size, style and price range. Anything you purchase will be known by your money-managing banks. The downside is that maybe the banks will stop a purchase for one reason or another. Suppose you want to go on a nice vacation but your account balances and credit margins say you can’t go. There is a price to pay for all this technical automation.
Even simple things like doorbells will change. Technology is available today to notice someone is at the door, do a face ID search and announce to you that John and Debbie are at the front door.
Social Networks will become your calendar, schedule your bills, arrange vacations and track not only where you are but where everyone is that you want to know about – and their schedules, too.
Unlike today, where one logs on to a world wide web of choices, your service provider will shape your access according to your history. This happens today if you allow it. The mariner was using email with Google chrome active the other day and mentioned, quite innocently, a psychological term in the text. Google immediately offered me a choice of nearby psychiatrists.
It is truly a new world coming to us. Not only in a personal sense, but we will know in real time the activities of our governments, the global politics and the issues of global warming and anything else –miniscule or overwhelming, that is happening.
Your knowledge can be the sum of the entire world’s knowledge. The father of Greek Philosophy, Thales, would be proud.