Vision Paper- Rasheeda Davis

What Future???

The Future of technology seems to be constantly predicted in films and literature. The biggest question we need to ask ourselves is will we have a future? The world is filled with pollution, corruption and vast poverty. It seems like almost every day a new disease is being discover that will destroy mankind. I think technology should be our solution to the problems that we have; however, it seems like this might not be the case.  We are not taking full advantage of the endless possibilities we have with technology. Information is the more accessible than it has ever been in history. Most people don’t spend time investing in learning because of the easy accessibility of google. The world as we know it can improve or worsen if we don’t acknowledge our flaws as a society and strive to improve. The environment is slowly dying which will eventually impact us all. Some individuals might escape this temporarily due to wealth. However, this will only last temporarily. The wrath of Mother Nature is real and will dictate how we live. The sea level are rising and we cannot deny how fast this is occurring. The ice caps are melting and the Amazon is slowing eroding away. Is it too late? May not, I hope that one day this will all change and we will live in much better space. A world where the environment is respected and technology thrives. Technology will not only improve the life of humans but also improve the environment.

  • Sam Smith 2015, Sunny Times Opinion Column

Hi, my name is Ken. If you’re reading it’s too late. Yes, I said it’s too late. I’m not referring to the Drake’s Album. I talking about the condition of the world. The article above is an insert I found from a article 20 years ago that I found in the basement of my grandparents’ house while searching for another can of Campbell’s Chicken Noodle Soup. Most of the news I get now is very depressing. The world is more or less gone as we knew it. Disease and pollution destroyed large portions of Africa and China. The scariest thing so far is being trapped in doors. Currently we are not allowed to exit our pod homes. When I look out my window all I see is a blue fictitious translational screen that surrounds our home that mimics the atmosphere. Outside of this device, the world of the early twenty-first century does not exist.

Much of what was present has dissolved due to worsen conditions in the environment. Our attempt as a society to reverse the conditions of pollution epically failed. It all started in to 2016 when Donald Trump became President of the United States. One of his first disastrous decision was the reversal of President Obama’s environmental initiatives. During that time, an attempt was made for the world to globally acknowledge the existence of global warming. At that time, even though I was only 12 years, I knew global warming was a real thing that we should acknowledge. I remember sitting in class stunned by the images my teacher showed of the Islands in the Pacific disappearing. Those images resonated with me because I dreamed of traveling the world one day.

I wanted to visit the Arctic Circle, climb Mount Everest, walk a portion of the wall of China, and dive in the clear deep blue ocean of the Fiji Islands. I was inspired by my grandfather’s stories during his service in the US Navy. I sat in class that day thinking how could anyone say global warning doesn’t exist. I still remember some kids making smart comments like “not my problem” and “the US will always be fine”. The most unexpected comment I heard was “when do you think the latest IPhone will be released”. Most individuals in class that day were focused on updating their twitter or listening to the latest music. I thought to myself, technology will the demise of mankind. We rely on it so much that we ignore the impact it is having on our environment.

When I was younger, the highlight of my day was coming home from school and playing outside with my friends. After I completed my homework, I enjoyed riding my bike outside, playing tag with friends, and climbing the tree in my back yard. I played video games but preferred to play outside. Overtime, my friends became more interested in staying inside. They preferred to watch movies and play video games. I would go along with it because I did not want to be left out. I always felt that we should be active and not just sit around on our days off playing video games. I believe society as whole began to prefer to activities that required no effort or thinking. With this, we began to give away the biggest thing that separates humans from other creatures and that’s our vast ability to think. We began to allow technological devices, like Siri, to think for us. Technology not allowed simplified our lives but also our minds.

I’m sorry to go off on such a tangent. This is just the first time in a year, I felt like I could express the way that I feel. Most people now don’t talk about the past. It’s often said “why live in the past when we have to fight to survive now”. One thing that is certain is that we fighting for our lives. At the start of 2020 one of the last large ice caps in the Artic melted rising the sea level significantly. Within hours, Millions of people died because they could not get to higher ground fast enough. We were all forced to move inland because the conditions in the environment we really rough.

The biggest problem that contributed to the demise of society and the speeding up of global warming was the deregulation of fossil fuel emissions into the atmosphere. For several years, there were strict guidelines on how much fossil fuel omission should be allowed into the environment. Once Trump came into office this slowly changed, especially in the US. The EPA lost funding and its resources went it to the business and technology sectors.  Without the EPA there was not a watch dog holding companies accountable for their actions. America was viewed as one the leaders fighting against global warming. Once America stopped caring, the rest of the world stopped caring.

The demand for smart devices increased. Factories across the world began to produce more device to compensate the rapid demand. Initially, there was not ramifications from the rapid influx of fossil fuels into the atmosphere. Within one year, a portion of the ozone layer in Russia had completely depleted. Russian scientist attempted to create a device that would produce synthetic molecules that would multiple and fill the gap. This device worked and it seemed to solve the problem of the ozone layer. This device was used to address the problems with the ozone layer around the world. The problem of global warming seemed to be solved.  Scientist did not realize that this was only a temporary solution. Pollution continued and eventually the device stopped working.

My advice is stop before it is too late.

-Ken (2021)

I was inspired to write a journal entire from an individual in the future. This individual is using a time machine to send a letter to himself in the past. I wanted to focus more on the impact of technology that the actual devices. I think it is important to assess the impact of technology on our society socially and environmental.