Future Hate

Saw this crazy article on Mashable:


about Goggle Glass wearers in San Francisco being attacked, their Glass taken and smashed, and I thought so begins the future hate. In every generation, it seems, there is some form of hatred that is acceptable. In my generation, it seemed to be against the LGBT community. The I’m not homophobic, I just don’t want those people in my neighbourhood thing. That is far from solved, although the west is beginning to make in-roads. However, it seems we’re already seeing suggestions of what the new acceptable hatred will be: technophobia.

The sides will be drawn by the luddites and the technophiles (cyborgs, as they are already becoming known as), and the middle will be those who don’t hate the ‘cyborgs’, but feel uncomfortable when they’re around. The fear will come from the constant monitoring potential of wearable, or implanted, computers, the I don’t want someone knowing everything I do (even though the government already does).

The following is a brief post responding to a comment on the above article, which I’ll share here.

The comment,

Get all those Google Glass freakazoids off the streets.  We don’t need no Glassholes taking videos of everything on the sly.  Google Glass is the next Segway device.  I dare any of those Glassheads coming into my neighborhood wearing that crap.  We’ll treat just like anyone walking around with a video camera on their shoulders.  If people want to wear Google Glass, let them wear it in their own houses.  They can look at themselves in the mirror and see how dorky they look.

To which I reply:

Wow, the next few decades are going to be very difficult for some people, aren’t they? Just wait until we can’t even tell if a person has a camera. Glass is quite large a bulky atm, but in a few years it will be so small as to be hardly noticable. Not to mention when it interfaces to improved versions of myndwear, the mind control headbands. And why is no one talking about smart gear camera watches? Anyway, I already have a pen-size video camera.

And on a related note, I can’t wait to see the protests when driverless (V2V) cars are introduced (my bet is less than 20 years before we’re all driving them – mandated by the insurance companies).

Given all that, many people will be longing for the days of ‘normal’ video cameras in their neighbourhoods. Me? I say, bring on the cyborgs!

Incidentally, I did not reply on the site. This was not due to any fear of public sharing or being flamed, but rather because Mashable requests access to my personal login data for whichever social networking site I sign up through, and I’m uncomfortable with the notion that they might post things in my name.

This brings to light some very real issues that will have to be address regarding ‘cyborgs’. Namely, safeguarding security information. For the average person, this means companies will have to establish better, more private, systems for their customers to enter their PIN numbers while shopping.

However, while there will be issues, some real and some only in the minds of the fearful, I think our adaptation to the new reality is going to be bumpy, but worthwhile. Ideally, it will result in creating a more open and accepting society, both in public, and within families.

If you’d like to read some science fiction that addresses this issue, I recommend The Light of Other Days (2000), by Arthur C. Clark and Stephen Baxter.


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