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Future Technology

People often think that future is all about flying cars, robots and space
travelling. Maybe it will be like that, who knows, but at least until this day
the changes haven’t been remarkable. Companies are all the time investing more
money on research and development. This indicates that companies and government
are interested to achieve and find new technological inventions that would
change the markets. All ready one of the computer related inventions, Internet,
has changed the spreading of information globally. E-companies’ are stocks are
rising in the stock markets like rockets. This is a great example how future
technology will change the economics around the world as it affects greatly our
everyday life. “Internet is worldwide network of connected computers. This
network enables you to communicate with the rest of the world in different
ways.”(1) Has been approximated that the total amount of information globally
doubles every 18 months, which indicates that internet, as an important part of
media nowadays, affects everyone of us though we might not have a possibility to
be on-line. The approximated number of people who are on-line daily is more than
18%. “As you can imagine and as you probably may have seen, there are a lot
companies. You can find the big ones like Coca-Cola, Disney, Xerox, IBM. Apart
from supplying (product) information and amusement, they mostly use the web for
name and product branding (recognition). There’s a completely new industry with
lots and lots of Net based companies like the search engines, banner exchanges,
hosting services, (Net) marketers and software enterprises. And there are
others, which have expanded their originally offline business field to the Net
(Credit Card companies, Researchers, Marketers, Yellow Pages). Small and medium
business companies selling to consumers. A great part of them use the Net to
expand their offline business, others try to make a living on it. And some of
them see the necessity to transfer from one to the other in the future.

Business-to-business companies are also found on the Net. In short, all kind of
enterprises have taken the step to the online world.”(2) Internet is not only
a way to spend time surfing, but it is also an very good way to make money by
transforming products, services and markets. It is an easy way to reach people
when thinking advertising and it is an easy way to people to reach the
information wanted, but the competition between companies in the virtual reality
of Internet, is as hard as in the real world. Government’s space program also
influences and will influence economics of the future. U.S. government’s NASA
(North American Space Association) has done great job exploring space and
research new opportunities in outer space and other planets. The question is how
the new future technology will change the direction of economics and by that our
living on Earth or maybe on some other planet… The world population is growing
fast. The room to live on earth might be a problem in future, and Earth might
not be able to feed the upcoming population. This is one of the reasons why we
have to explore the space for new opportunities. The problem is the money. Are
taxpayers willing to pay? After the resent failure of sending a $266 million
Pathfinder to Mars, taxpayers started doubt is the space program worth it, but
mistakes that are caused by understaffed and overworked space teams are not
unique to interplanetary missions, like NASA’s Pathfinder mission. A single
broken cord can turn to a $400 million cost, but who said it is not risky.Is
this $450 billion plan going to give taxpayers their moneys back? No, because
the new technology will help their children and grandchildren to live their
everyday lives in polluted and overpopulated environment caused by the past
generations. “In recent years, cost-reduction efforts throughout America’s
space industry have had profound effects on the workforce. Older and more
experienced workers were the predominant target of cost-conscious layoffs or of
contract swapping prior to retirement-benefits vesting. But even the younger
workers, supposedly their eventual replacement, were victimized by the
cuts.”(3)This is what the taxpayers should understand; their selfish use of
money on researching new technology might be a threat for the future
generations. “If we were to bring back a rock in 2005 that clearly shows
evidence of ancient life on the planet or fi we were to find evidence of life on
Mars, that would be great impetus for a human program. A manned mission must
have a compelling scientific or economic rationale”, said Alan Ladwig,
NASA’s associate administrator.(4) The greatest effect of future technology
has is on the productivity. Technological change, or innovation, is a
contributor to the growth of productivity. From the development of plows to the
invention of computers, history shows many example of technologies that have
increased productivity. New products, new methods of production, new ways of
organizing production(Ford’s assembly line) or marketing products and new
methods of communication can each demonstrate how productivity increases. And
when productivity increases faster than the population, standard of living
increases. This makes people’s everyday life easier and the quality of living
is higher. One example how technological change has changed our living past 10
years have been reusable products and materials. Recycling and reusable
materials have made our quality of living better by minimizing the production of
trash. Also the technological changes in agriculture have increased productivity
of our basic need products. “One of the most dramatic high-tech developments
arriving at the millenium is the obsolescence of money. The advent of the
Internet and other new media marketplaces, like interactive TV, demands a new
kind of currency that is secure, virtual, global, and digital. The death of hard
cash, and its rebirth as digital currency, will transform all transactions in
society and touch industry worldwide. The emerging digital market and the new
interactive consumer challenge our assumptions about how to conduct business. 30
million people today with a spending power of over$100 billion, represents a
serious market no business can afford to ignore. This new consumer is virtual,
global, interactive and multimedia-driven.”(5) The digital money has taken
over. The simple cash has changed into numbers on the computers. People pay
their bills from home by using computers and Internet, people pay their grocery
with a plastic credit card and people go shopping from home and they don’t
even have to move, just use the keyboard. A huge problem in the future will be
the energy. Already we are noticing that our sources of energy will be empty
someday. A team of scientists and engineers have predicted that the
technological trends that will shape the world in next 50 years will be high
powered energy packages. “On the energy front are highpower energy packages
such as microgenerators of electricity that will make electronic products and
appliances highly mobile; environmentally clean, decentralized power sources;
batteries linked to solar power; and small generators fueled by natural
gas.”(6) As the population of the Earth keeps increasing we have to figure out
how to feed all the people who are going to live here. Globally thinking we are
already suffering of the lack of the food. All over the world hunger is a big
problem. Clean water will be a problem too if technological changes won’t help
us. “Designer foods, genetically engineered foods that are environmentally
friendly and highly nutritious, will fill the stores. Even cotton and wool will
be genetically engineered. Water worldwide will be safe and inexpensive because
technology will provide advanced filtering, processing, and delivery.

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Desalination and water extraction from air are also possible. In the years ahead
new technologies will become much more personalized, and they will closely
affect almost every aspect of our lives.”(7) This was an very optimistic
prediction of the future, but until then we have to keep people worldwide alive
without the new innovations. The money countries are using to military should go
to the people who suffer hunger and to the research of cures of globally spread
diseases like HIV and cancer. No one knows what’s going to happen in the
future, but the new future technology can at least give us a direction. Our
actions have a great effect how we and the upcoming generations are going to
live on Earth. Putting money now on research and development gives a better
economic base that we can rely on. The biggestchange to our economic will have
the increased productivity. By increased productivity our standard of living
will be higher and our everyday life will be easier. May everyone of us be there
to witness the flying cars and talking robots, so that we can be proud of our
achievements. FOOTNOTES (1) “What is Internet?” p.1 (2) “What is
Internet?” p.5 (3) Obreg, USA Today p.3 (4) Allen, Canoe p.2 (5) “Premiere
Speakers Bureau” p.1 (6) Sixeas, “Whither 2020?” p.1 (7) Sixeas,
“Whither 2020?” p.1
“What is Internet?” An Own Site 2 May 2000
“Dr. James Canton” Premiere Speakers Bureau 4 April
Allen Jane E. “Pathfinder ignites interest in human Mars travel:But is worth
it?” Canoe 10 July 1997. 15 February 2000
Sanborn Sonny “Is NASA worth the expense?” The Oklahoma Daily 1 March 1996.

15 February 2000
“21st century trends” Future Technology 1 July 1998. 24 February 2000 “On the yellow brick
road” Economist 11 September 1999. 26 March 2000
“A technology road map” Technology Planning 4 April 2000
Oberg James “NASA faster, cheaper, but not better” USA Today 7 December
1999. Proquest 4 March 2000. Sixeas Virginia M. “whither 2020?” Environment
March 2000. Proquest 4 March 2000.


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