Thursday, December 4, 2008

What does the Future Hold?

Journal Entry No. 10

So, if I got a crystal ball, probably operated by millions of little nanobots, and looked inside, what might it tell me about the future? I think the change that could happen in a decade would be as drastic as the changes that have happened in our world since 1998.

If you look at a website made ten years ago, it is easy to see that it is substandard, and probably rather ugly. In ten years, everyone will be able to make a pretty website, at least by today's standard. Today, anyone can boot up Dreamweaver or use preexisting website templates to make a good looking website. In ten years, the standard for websites will rise dramatically. They will become more interactive. But, instead of designers worrying about what happens if a user with 26” screen and a resolution of thousands of pixels logs on, they will be worrying about the many more users who will be accessing the internet from their phone. If I am being optimistic, internet will become more available to everyone, everywhere. If I am more pessimistic, than the internet will be floating around everywhere, but internet companies will have found a way to charge you for hopping onto to their floating wireless signal.

Everyone will be watched a bit more closely in the future. Already, cars are being installed with black boxes that tell whom it may concern if you were speeding at the time of an accident, or at least turning a bit too quickly. Suddenly, your insurance is void. Speeding cameras are already becoming more commonplace. The EZPass company will flourish when they combine forces with motor vehicle administrations and start issuing license plates that have scannable UPC codes in addition to numbers. (I think we will have to leave the numbers for the sake of hit-n-runs. Though maybe cameras will be everywhere by that time and we won't have to worry about that.). In a decade every passport and driver's license in America will have a computer inside it. God knows what that will do. I am sure there will be fights about whether or not it is unconstitutional to be able to track down people by installing GPS into their driver's licenses.

The government will not change that much. I say this because the government has not changed much in the past few decades. If we're lucky, there will be healthcare for everyone, HMO's will be out of existence, and the draft will be abolished. If we're not lucky, we will receive a draft, and we will be taxed for every bag of trash we place outside. Either way, the government will have to deal with more technology related issues, but mostly the government is too stiff and rigid to change much.

My goal is to work in the video game industry next year. In ten years, I can only imagine what kind of work I will be doing. The capability of graphics have almost reached their peak, but by then we will have 200-core processors that will let us process all of these graphics much better. More importantly than that, I think soon companies will start moving towards virtual reality and holographic images. Nintendo will come out with it first, but a week later every other company will have the technology. 3D artists really will have to worry about what something looks like from every angle. Massively multiplayer games will become huge. Bigger than they already are. MMO's are already appearing on kids' sites and the like. Normal games will have the opportunity to have gigantic multiplayer battles. I can only hope that in ten years I will be running around in a holographic Grand Theft Auto world with hundreds of other people running around in the same city. It would be so hectic it would be amazing.

We will also have to be a little paranoid, we will always have to fight against the steam, against our government, and protect our rights. The future will be no different. Wars will start and I will be there to protest them. Companies will start charging people for anything and everything. Still, because I know that video games are going to better, phones are going to get cooler, and cars are going to get sleeker, I am genuinely looking forward to being in the future. The next decade does not scare me: I will be right there, creating innovating games for new hardware, amidst an unavoidable onslaught of crap, even in a virtual-reality-holographic-surround-sound world.