Finding my Theme, again. – Technology and Society

Finding my Theme, again. – Technology and Society

Reading Time: 3 minutes
Your theme will take the form of a rant that begins with any of these four sentences.
  1. For as long as I can remember I’ve felt there is something exciting at the intersection of _______ and _______
  2. I deeply believe that the world needs _______
  3. Never in history has there been a better time for _______
  4. My whole life I’ve been fascinated by what happens when you mix _______ and _______
So I did this once before, it’s an exercise from the book “Entrepreneur Revolution” by Daniel Priestley . The idea is that you can use the four questions to try and find what your theme or passion is in your life. Last year my business was crushed under by the global pandemic of COVID. Leaving me with nothing but debts and angry creditors who once were friends. While I am lucky enough to have some work. I am taking this time to try and find out where I want to be before starting off again. So here is part 1 of 4, trying to answer the questions above and maybe from there I’ll move onto a plan and finally a business venture.
So I did this once before, it’s an exercise from the book “Entrepreneur Revolution” by Daniel Priestly. The idea is that you can use the four questions to try and find what your theme or passion is in your life.  Last year by business was crushed under by the global pandemic of COVID. Leaving me with nothing but debts and angry creditors who once were friends. While I am lucky enough to have some work. I am taking this time to try and find out where I want to be before starting off again.  So here are my answers to the 4 questions above and maybe from there I’ll move onto a plan and finally a business.  

1. For as long as I can remember I’ve felt there is something exciting at the intersection of technological progress and society.

The rate of change in technology is exponential, every day a new system, technology or breakthrough is opening the doors to a whole new potential place of innovation and growth. Society and culture as a whole lag behind the rate of change. This is pretty standard for almost every form of tech, partly because it takes 20 to 30 years for a tech to really make it into mass usage. Part of this is due to the problem of getting buy in from the majority which requires a typical a period of convincing (and collaborating with) Innovators and Early adopters. You can see this with cases of companies resisting moving to the Cloud or avoiding developing their sites for a mobile/tablet audience. 

The adoption of products graph

Of course while there are technical examples everywhere social change and legal fights follow similar trajectories. Battles for GLBTQ rights have been an ongoing struggle for years and are only starting to gain traction in what you might call the “early majority”. But I really like seeing how technical change impacts society in a more tangible way. For example AI is in its nascent phase right now. But already it’s starting to make it’s impact felt in biotechnology whether it’s identifying cancer 1 or creating superior ways to understand the nature of our biology 2 Automated cars and trucks will be (already are) driving the streets long before the lawmakers are ready. Deepfakes and faceswaps create horrendous personal rights and authenticity issues. Space travel while a slow start has gone from prices at $10k per Kg to LEO in 2006 to $970 per Kg in 2020 3. Which is allowing the emergence of global satellite internet constellations.   While there are bad sides to every technology its transformative power is undeniable, we are liberating data, information and reducing labour at an unheard of rate. We, as a society, need to try and see where that impact will be in an active way rather than a passive reactive manner. 

Current interests in this domain

Space, Robotics and Artificial Intelligence are set to revolutionise the world in the coming decades. Not just in what is possible but also in how it will impact our everyday lives. The confluence of high-speed, low latency, global broadband from satellite constellations combined with ever improving AI and the constant refinement and improving of robotics, will upend massive parts of our current labour, production and supply chain.

Thats a bit out of the scope of this blog post so I’ll leave you with Boston Dynamics New Years offering to wet your appetite. 

  1. https://nypost.com/2020/01/02/google-ai-spots-breast-cancer-better-than-doctors-study-finds/[]
  2. https://deepmind.com/blog/article/AlphaFold-Using-AI-for-scientific-discovery[]
  3. https://www.futuretimeline.net/data-trends/6.htm[]

143 – Languages to learn

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How many languages should be taught or learned? Every member should strive to be bi-lingual or better. To speak another language is to learn another culture, to speak properly is to understand the mindset of a people and the no doubt necessary time abroad to master all this will be a life changing experience. Also this helps in translating the studies, lessons and content of the community and would increase the ability of the community to spread to other countries without massive language barrier issues. The type and diversity of languages that be learned are immense. English, Chinese, Russian and Spanish are 4 of the most important. Especially a high level of English because, for the moment at least, it is incredibly widely spoken as the worlds second language in science, engineering and software development.

142 – Distribution of knowledge

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How should knowledge be distributed among the members and the public? Obviously there are various elements to learning:

  1. Obtaining knowledge : facts and details.
  2. Obtaining practical skills : Experience, work.
  3. Creating theories, improving existing theories.

Members must share knowledge of keeping the community running a form of members only (publicly viewable) wiki to give advice, information, methods, memes learned or discovered that make chores, elected responsibilities more efficient, or common solutions.

The Spreading of scientific/reasoning knowledge is done through teaching, self study and dialogue.

There should always be a publicly available site that consolidates all the knowledge and discussions of the community.

This site should be easily searchable and allow statistical analysis of different systems of the community, trends and allow members to collaborate on work without duplicating research.

The world at large would also have access to this via a public wiki. Some research for companies would be kept hidden due to NDA’s or other restrictions.

However, the ultimate aim is to make as much data as possible free to the individual and free to the people of the world. Translated versions of the content should be progressively created and text books in all the core subject areas, recipes, personal development, science, lessons plans and source code should be placed under a creative commons licence (GPL).

139 – Growth and Membership

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How would the community grow over time?

I would like to see the community only grow at a natural and stable pace that if correctly managed will have savings for hard times, provide for the members and prepare a fund for a future community .The rather elegant system of biology and mitosis would seem an appropriate growth methodology (if done at a reasonable rate). when the community reach a certain size it first of all will remain stable gaining enough resources and savings to create a secondary community and training its members up to a sufficient level so when the savings and abilities of the communities reach a predefined level a secondary property is renovated by all available members followed by around half of the original community leaving to populate it.

As per mitosis and cell division each community can start to specialize and work on a specific expertise, science etc. and be a place where members can go to gain mastery in a discipline, the public can go to be educated or where organizations go to get technical support and help on a particular subject. One should always be careful of over specializing, over specialization breeds in weakness, it’s slow death.

138 – legal status of the community

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How would the community be viewed by a government?

Which, to clarify means as a charity, foundation, enterprise, a Higher Education Corporation etc. etc.

Due to the intricate issues of law dependent on the country that the community resides this is not easy to answer. For example how would Islamic laws on finance affect savings for the community, how would a co-operative status in France adjust the way money is stored or given to individuals. What about healthcare, company obligations to pensions?

This is all further compounded by the community working for charities, taking money and “paying” members, generating “paid-for” services, ultimately then each community must chose the most appropriate available status based on what is available in the host country.

Ideally, the community shouldn’t be treated in a special way and should grow on its own merits, it should be an example of a functional independent society that provides a valuable service to the local community, nation, world and humanity without some hidden agenda and without proselytizing.

it should ask for favoritism either but rise or fall on its own merits.