It's an Inside-Out World Now

What if we turned society inside out and made the internet the center, the starting point of everything?

Sound good to you?

  • South Korea’s KakaoTalk messaging app did just that when it opened a bank! It’s online-only and rocketed to 45% market share in the first month. Imagine when cryptocurrency solutions go mainstream.
  • Online dating is radically changing who mates with whom. It’s leading to more interracial couples, more LGBT couples and even more durable marriages. No one, however, will admit that’s how they met their partner.
  • It used to be you rented an apartment for 6-12 months from a landlord. Then Airbnb came along and you could rent apartments by the night. Now, we’ve come full circle and Airbnb is building its own apartment buildings.
  • Seen that Black Mirror episode about social media ratings that get feedback across platforms and even in real life? Some folks want your freelancer ratings to be portable across platforms. It’s the first step down a slippery slope!
  • First there were taxis, then Uber’s ride-sharing, now Google want to put self-driving “ubers” on the road later this year.
  • Registering land sales with your city government? Not anymore. That’s going on the blockchain now. They’re trialing it in India, among other places.
  • The Internet even has cyborg cockroaches doing backflips. How long until you and I are in the cockroach’s shoes, I ask!
  • Speaking of which, biohackers are collaborating from their garages to edit genes, make glow-in-the-dark beer and create customized cancer cures. (If the government will stop classifying dogs as drugs, that is!)

And let’s not forget about the king of all Internet control vectors: autocorrect. It makes us say what it wants to say! Everything that comes from the Internet is good, ignore everything else, citizen.

I’m a fan of the future but I’m a little scared now. But, don’t worry, here is a 10-min time-lapse video of a cargo ship’s journey from the Red Sea to Hong Kong to inject some nature back into this steel and silicon world. Gorgeous.

P.S. A China update: They’re now metering your use of toilet paper with facial recognition.

Photo by Mikhail Vasilyev on Unsplash