In the next 25 years…

In 25 years, intergalactic dinosaurs will roam the Earth. Just kidding!

After binge watching popular sci-fi tv series this past fall, like Black Mirror, Stranger Things, and Wayward Pines, I found myself thinking about what the future will be like. Will we be living in a cubed box with flat built-in screens surrounding us? Are robots going to take over the world? It’s scary how science-fiction isn’t too far off!

One of my professor’s challenged our class with a difficult question:

What do you think the future holds for education, technology, and communications?

In formulating my answer, I looked back at the second blog post I wrote, which was about technology determinism.

Yes, I do believe technology is driving society (very different from my original thoughts — read Technology Determinism: Are you Hard or Soft?) but the money and brains behind those technologies have control of how it will be used by society. Yet, society has control of the way they are using the technologies. Every human being has a choice. It is an ecosystem that feeds one another.

I hold our society, government, giant technology companies, and anyone responsible in creating these new technologies accountable for the future of education and communications.

As an optimistic individual, I do see the future for education, technology, and communications to be bright but I am also weary of the choices humanity makes. After reading The Machine Stops by E.M. Forster, I found this science-fiction short-story, written in 1909, had already predicted the many technologies we have today (like video chat) and even so, may predict the future! Drum roll please…

Below are my top 3 predictions of 2041:

1. As technology advances, machines will crash and burn because of the negative effects it has on society. (ie – Uber’s self-driving car)

2. Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality will impact the way we communicate and interact with the world around us.

3. Government and tech companies will develop laws, ethical and moral practices, and guidelines that will serve and protect society.

I strongly believe humanity can strike a balance between life and life behind the screen. I often get sucked into my little devices, my filter bubbles. There are times I need to conduct a self-evaluation (check myself before I wreck myself) to then quickly realize I need to engage in face-to-face interaction rather than develop neck problems while staring at my phone, get outdoors to appreciate mother nature, and practice mindfulness to detach from the machine.

Knowledge is power. As part of the Teachers College CLMTD graduate program, I hold myself responsible for ensuring that I create and design technologies that are ethical, moral, and serve students with a healthy balance between life and technology.

Thank you, Dr. Gorski, for an unforgettable semester!


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