Predictions are a dumb idea if you’re a writer. No matter how well written or justified, they will certainly be wrong. Nonetheless, predictions are fun. Like any mental exercise, they force us to consider scenarios that, while far fetched, require consideration of alternatives otherwise lost to practicality. In that spirit, here are a few that I make in Microslices:
By 2030 (14 years from now):
- Humans will remain employed, but massively displaced. Despite the dire warnings of guys like Jaron Lanier, humans will remain employed. Humanity will not require a subsistence wage. AI is not the end of employment; like the industrial and information revolutions before it, new human careers will emerge that we can’t foresee.
- More than a trillion sensors will carpet the earth. Everything will have a sensor or be a sensor, making awareness of facts almost ubiquitous, and privacy elusive. This will be good for evidence based management, and bad for those who like to make decisions with their gut.
- In digital environments, machines will be indistinguishable from humans. The human ear will remain resilient and will continue to be able to detect audible AI, but you’ll never be able to tell whether your chat support desk is in the Philippines or in an Amazon server farm.
- Business and government leaders will not need professional advisors for things like root cause analysis and investment prioritization. They’ll ask their desk clock.
- Technology will begin to advise us not just on problems, but on how to use technology itself. In other words, we will seek advice from technology on technology, accelerating a virtuous cycle of innovation.
What do you think the world of knowledge work will be like in 2030?