Imagine a world free of poverty and hunger, a world where we work with nature and not against it, a world where we can overcome physical illness and mental illness.
When I’m not caught up in the cultural frenzies of the modern life, I dream and read about the possibilities of such a world.
Read along and immerse yourself into a promising future within the realms of our evolution along with technology.
The technologies that can help us in
- Overcoming Poverty and Hunger
- Fighting Climate Change
- Letting go of unethical treatment of animals
- Avoiding obesity and death due to old age
- Staying away from physical and mental illness
- Surviving extinction
are all intertwined.
It sucks that the biggest challenge to the betterment of humans are humans themselves. From failed politics at a national level to failed economics at a global level, we need to go a long way to mend things. But if we can collectively work together along with the advancing technology we might just be able to live in such a world.
Decentralized economic system: As a solution to end poverty and tackling the fear of unemployment.
It is interesting to see how dependent we have become on the concept of money to survive, a concept that was not natural but constructed by humans ourselves. To end poverty, we need to make sure that we are able to include every individual financially and work on the concept of Universal Basic Income. The strangest reason why money doesn’t reach everyone is because it is controlled by a set of individuals. There is also the fear of humans losing jobs to artificial intelligence and finding an income source might get difficult.
Block-chain technology offers the initial methodology to decentralize money and create an Internet of things which is connecting people and objects so that everybody has access to all information and trade. Block chain technology has its challenges but we might need to work on a globalized economic system with similar principles. If you think about it everything has reached the masses only when it has been decentralized through networks– Information (Eg. Google Search), Education (Eg. Coursera), Medicine(Eg: TEDMED). The next field that is looking for a breakthrough is Income.
Cloning Technologies: For putting an ending to both hunger and factory farming
As a human, it bothers me that there is a still a large number of people who still continue to live without getting even a single meal a day. As a vegetarian by choice, it hurts me that we continue to unethically treat animals in the name of factory farming even though we have the single most important ability to consciously make a choice. Cloning technology has the solution to feed millions of people in providing high quality meat as well as protein source by not hurting any animal.
Cloning here doesn’t necessarily mean to clone an entire organism but just a selective tissue or an organ. In a decade’s time we will have the technology to clone animal muscle tissue to provide meat and protein source without factory farming. This model will be a low-cost, a reduced environmental impact as the consumption levels of water will drastically fall and most importantly all the food can be generated without having to kill any animal. This particular technology will help one produce food in large quantities and with the help of technology it can be done anywhere and everywhere.
Neural implants in the form of nanobots: To fight illness and crack the age barrier
Nanotechnology is the greatest boon that the health industry has received. The smaller the size in technology, the greater the reach we will have inside the human body. Nanobots that will the size of human cells can travel inside the bloodstream that will help us scan the human brain and the rest of the body completely to understand the exact cause behind a physical or mental ailment. Not just the cause but at the nanoscale level, we will also be able to treat the problems through diagnostic as well as therapeutic functions within the body.
These nanobots could also keep a constant check on our body functions as well as heart rate or blood pressure level. The programmed nanobots can either inform the individual or the enhanced intelligence of these nanobots can detect and destroy cancer cells and pathogens or even regrow human organs. The concept of genetic mutation at DNA and mitochondrial levels to cure cancer cells or replacement of certain body parts either biological or non-biological can also extend the human life to a great extent.
Humans are driven by sex and food naturally, the two most important requirements on the basis of evolution. Imagine having any food you want for a good taste not having to worry about the fat accumulation because nanobots inside your body will take of the excretion and fat burning or release mechanism.
While a great number of people claim that the reason behind loneliness is because of our over attachment to technology, I believe it is partially true. The major reason behind the feeling of loneliness is our detachment from our body and senses. We humans in the present world do not pay enough attention to our health and as we have evolved we have stopped paying enough attention to our senses. The definite solution is to connect with ourselves at a spiritual level through meditation. The alternate option is usingtechnology in the future is in the form of neural implants enhancing our sensual experiences as well as intelligent nanobots getting absorbed into our brain cells that release balanced dopamine to help us stay away from mental illness.
Nano-solar satellites and nanobot particles: To tackle climate change
No doubt, humans have been greedy and shown indifference to nature exploiting its resources and creating an imbalance by burning coal and using other industrial processes that release carbon dioxide. The future definitely likes in natural resources but in the renewable ones. The growth of solar power has been increasing tremendously for both industrial as well as commercial purposes. In the future we have the possibility of solar powered satellites orbiting the Earth that can convert sunlight to electricity and beam it back to Earth where each satellite could provide electricity in terms of billions of watts.
The future likely seems to have nanotechnology everywhere and these devices definitely need carbon to exist. And therein lays the prospect where we can pull carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere to provide the necessary carbon to make the nanobots. On keeping a track on the amount of carbon dioxide we intake for nanobots, we can keep a check on global warming or global cooling.
The biggest fear that most of us have at present is if human beings will become extinct. The possibility of humans becoming extinct in a distant future by natural causes on Earth is being worked upon by organizations that aim to settle on Mars but the other possibility that a lot of us hope to avoid is Cyborgs putting an end to human existence. Little do we realize that we are already active cyborgs in a way that we are connected to technology through phones and computers. It won’t be long before we merge completely with technology to transcend biology and in the process becoming the superhumans we fear.
An equally interesting topic of discussion is the difference between intelligence and consciousness.
Consciousness – a person’s awareness or perception of something
Intelligence – the ability to acquire and apply knowledge and skills.
While artificial intelligence has been evolving at an ever faster rate, the growth of artificial consciousness is still stuck at zero. The reason might be because we don’t yet completely understand or comprehend the term ‘consciousness’. Hence, the concept of an artificial entity developing consciousness on its own is at a distant future. Till then if we continue to explore and work with technology as well as merge with it, we will continue to be in a safe zone.
Call me an over-optimistic individual but it is this optimism that I believe will drive me to change the world a little bit. Having said that, I believe solving all the above challenges does not mean that we will end up living in a utopian society. Humans as species thrive on challenges and the human beings we might become will have a new set of challenges to conquer.
The three people whose thoughts, beliefs and actions that have fundamentally impacted the way I think and live, the three people whose works that I have tried to understand, analyze and pen down here are Ray Kurzweil, Elon Musk and Yuval Noah Harari.