index

 

What's coming after the 2050's?

by Roger Bourke White Jr., copyright April 2018

Introduction

I have written a lot about the changes in technology and society that will be coming to humanity between the 2010's and the 2050's. The changes will be world shaking.

But as I envision the 2050's being world shaking, I'm also a bit unsettled. I'm unsettled because I can't envision much change coming after the 2050's.

Back to monotony

I envision the constant change that humanity has been experiencing since the start of the Industrial Revolution in the 1700's coming to an abrupt end in the 2050's. This ending of change will happen for the following reasons:

o The Cyber Age will begin -- the post 2050's will be a time when cyber becomes self-aware and will then dramatically surpass humanity in intelligence. It will also become much larger in quantity, it will be mostly inhabiting cyber space but there will be a lot of that space.

The result of these trends is that cyber will be running most of manufacturing, service and transportation activities happening in the civilized areas on Earth and nearby. Humanity will be getting most of its prosperity from cyber-run activities. What humanity will be contributing are dilettante contributions to prosperity, not core contributions.

Another result of growing cyber intelligence and self-awareness is that cyber will develop its own agenda for what is important and that agenda will be mostly invisible to humanity. This will be in large part because humanity won't be able to understand what cyber is thinking about. I envision advanced cyber having a relation with humanity similar to the relation between humans and cows... with humanity taking the cow side. This means that the world shaking changes cyber develops will be largely invisible to humanity.

All this means the human lifestyle post-2050's will be very comfortable, but it won't change much. The material prosperity will become a constant.

o Space travel won't be adding to variety -- space travel beyond our moon is going to remain too expensive for space commerce to develop. This means that space travel to the planets, other destinations in the Solar System, and to other stars will remain a hobby activity -- and that means it will remain small scale.

This means that what happens on earth and nearby will remain the center for almost all of human activities. The hobby space travel activities will be interesting to watch, but they won't be making world shaking changes to how humanity lives.

o Sciences fully mastered -- the basic hard sciences such as physics, chemistry and mathematics will be fully explained. The final frontier will be biology because it is so complex. Even moderately soft sciences such as economics will be well understood. This means exploring these areas further is not going to produce world shaking discoveries.

Where humanity will be spending time exploring and arguing, and wishing and hoping, are in the really soft urban legend sciences such as flat earth and chem trails. Net result: no world shaking coming out of science advances. The world shaking of the day will be coming from fashion and entertainment.

Conclusion

After the 2050's the world humans live in is going to undergo a surprising change: that surprising change is that technology and social change is going to stop. The world is going to become a very comfortable place, but not one that changes much.

What a surprise! We will be going back to the monotony of the Agricultural Age societies.

 

 

--The End--

index