A view of the future in my mind
When I talk with my son who is very perceptive and bright we sometimes find ourselves pondering what the future may be like when he is an adult and even further out for generations to come. It is a very interesting topic and it stirs a lot of debate because technology is ever-changing and it is so intertwined in our everyday lives. Did you ever get frustrated when the Internet was down and you could not access your e-mail recently? That is the sign of our increasing dependence on technological innovation. Do you think we would have had those same frustrations back in 1969? I don't think many people had use of personal computers back then to worry about e-mail. They were mainly used by scientists and NASA and e-mail and Internet technology was not mainstream. It was used only for specific purpose and within specialized agencies.
I remember when I was a kid I listened to a transistor radio and I enjoyed building them from radio kits. I thought that was exciting listening to something you built yourself. I was very influenced by the moon landing in 1969 and I thought that event broadcast live on television had such an impact for me personally that I still remember it quite vividly watching it on our RCA television in the living room with my parents and one of my sisters. I also remember that the space program influenced a lot of technological innovation and with the launching of space satellites our world would be redefined with technological change. I remember calculators were a major technological outcome of the space program.
When I tell my son I never used a computer until my first year in college he finds it hard to believe as he was introduced to the computer in his nursery school at BOCES when he was 5 years old. We live in a different time and within a span of 40 years a lot of change has taken place. My son has been exposed to excel, word, quick-books, the Internet, YouTube, facebook, compact discs, blue ray, laptops and e-mail before he turned 10 years old. When I was 10 years old I was fascinated by the turntable, my parent's 45 rpm record collection, our New Book of Knowledge Encyclopedia set and our family television. Things surely have changed since my childhood and a lot can be attributed to that event I remember as a kid in July 1969 when I heard Neil Armstrong say "This is one step for man and one giant leap for mankind." as he slowly walked on the moon's surface.
I have seen considerable change in automobiles over the years and find the technology to be always seeking a sleeker look, a more comfortable ride and more efficiency and fuel economy. Now the engineers are looking for alternate power sources that will save money and save the environment. Cars are also being designed to help protect passengers in the event of an accident by being more resistant and more able to absorb and deflect the impact of the collision. Engineers are always at the drawing board performing all their tests and also following government mandates.
Just for fun I have theoretical conversations with my son of what we think the world will be like in 100 to 200 years and we have these thought provoking images in our minds but the reality is it is very hard to picture the future that far in advance. I believe cities will have larger and larger skyscrapers and that cars will be run on many different fuel alternatives. I also believe their styling will be quite interesting but it is very hard to visualize what cars will look like in 100 to 200 years. What will the roadways and bridges look like in the future? What will the shopping malls look like? What will the amusement parks look like? What will Disney World look like? How long will it take to drive from New York to Florida or New York to California in 100 to 200 years? What will the speed limit be? Will we be able to catch a game at the "new Dodger stadium" by starting out in the morning from NY and getting to LA by game-time for a night game not by plane but by car? What will a baseball game be like that far into the future and how long will a pitcher normally go into the game if he is on target? What will player salaries be in 100 years? These are interesting questions?
What will computer technology be like that far into the future? How much will homes cost for the average family in 100 - 200 years? What will our currency look like? Will we still be using paper or will everything be electronic? What will the offices be like in 100 to 200 years? How will people dress in the future? It would be very interesting if we had a glimpse into the future that far in advance. Just imagine if 200 years will blow us away with the many changes can you imagine what 500 years into the future will be like?
I remember Columbus sailed the ocean blue as he set forth on his journey in 1492 and if he got to experience life in 1992 how would he feel? What will it be like flying in 100 to 200 years or riding the train? How long will people live that far in the future. Where will people vacation and will there still be fighting and wars? It just seems so hard to visualize all of this but it would be quite an experience to have a Nostradamus like vision of the future.
As we hypothesize the future we only have subjective ideas but it would be pretty cool to have a taste of the future. Artist's are blessed with a wonderful gift because they can translate their images into graphics and pictures and art which allows us in some way to visualize the future in our mind's image. I will allow my son to draw his rendition of what the future may look like in his mind's vision. I believe if you look at the buildings in the city of Dubai you will see that the future will continue such skylines.
I always tell my son he has wonderful opportunity and he can do anything he wishes and he can help shape the future with his ideas and his dreams and make his vision of the future a reality and that would be a wonderful thing.
Edward D. Iannielli III