How will technology affect our future lives? Xu

1. What would you, personally, most like to know about the future?

How will computing technology affect the way we live? Technology has already integrated and changed many parts of our lives. Almost every machine is controlled by some kind of chip, and living without our phones and computers seems impossible. I am curious how technology will further change the way we live. This question also affects me on a personal level because I might enter the tech industry. Knowing what future technology looks like helps me understand what my job in the future might constitute.

2. Think about ways that people (not necessarily you) anywhere, today, would seek predictive answers to the question you posed above.

For an individual innovation, people tried to brainstorm all the applications of that innovation and analyze economically how that will affect us. The focus of these predictions seems to be on the job market, perhaps because losing a job would drastically affect someone’s life. However, this approach is reactionary because it never predicts future innovations that might appear. Additionally, people have tried to predict the advent of computation using empirical rules such as Moore’s Law. It has been surprisingly reliable in the past and captures many innovations that occured, but such a law alone does not describe the impact technology has on our lives. Perhaps, the best way would require a combination of the two approaches, using both models that capture human innovation and those that relate innovation to impact. However, what would be a systematic way to model both and how would we quantify innovation or impact? Additionally, this question seems a little too general to be answered. How can we show that something is hard to predict, and is there any way to restrict a problem to make it easier?