In most of today’s world, you are more likely to die from sugar than you are gunpowder. The average lifespan is pushing into the 80’s around most of the world. Disease pandemics are smaller than ever before in history. War and conflicts are declining as the financial incentive to go to war fades away. Emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, Blockchain, and robotics are fundamentally changing our society as the internet already has. We are transforming society in a bigger way than the industrial revolution or reformations ever have.
The Time for Audacious Ideas
As robotics and artificial intelligence transform the industrial, manufacturing and knowledge sectors and blockchain revolutionizes the financial world, huge transitions in the employment world will take place. A big concern for governments and economists is what to do with the surplus workers tossed out of jobs; how to re-train them, the supposed loss of disposable income, perhaps income period and all that extra time we’re supposed to have. And then there’s people living longer, the concept of retiring at 65 is fast fading.
The reality is that the feared huge displacement won’t happen instantly. It will happen over years and perhaps decades. With big, audacious ideas, the retraining may be minimal for welders, electricians, fabricators and so on. Artificial Intelligence will not replace lawyers or doctors, it will enhance them.
Why We Need More Elon Musk Types
I can’t wait for the big ideas and innovations that will come from the first woman entrepreneur; those will be fantastic. What Elon Musk has done is to transform the space race, kick-start a game change in transportation (through Tesla, Hyperloop and space.) It is these big ideas that result in massive new capital outlays and huge construction projects.
Sergei Brin, Google’s co-founder, is investing millions into an airship; these could be a part of a huge transformation in moving goods. It is precisely these big ideas that we need. Why? As supportive technologies like robotics and AI improve and become part of our world, as wars decrease and we live longer, we can now achieve these once crazy ideas. Such big ideas inspire and open new opportunities.
What Stands in the Way?
Well, as usual, us, human society. Those usual suspects; unimaginative shareholders focused on the “now”, political agendas, old-school economic thinking and of course, fear of change. But as history proves, such roadblocks are, at best, temporary in the bigger scheme of things. We are at a breathtaking time in the development of humanity…we need more inventors, entrepreneurs and people with really big, transformative ideas. They will create jobs and grow our economies in new ways.
What’s your audacious, crazy, awesome big idea?