Beyond the digital economy

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Technological revolutions

Optimism in the technological progress of our days also masks the collateral effects feared by many and what will soon totally unseat the increasingly obsolete model of society.

Today some speak of the fourth industrial revolution. Well, I don't know if the term is accurate. Perhaps it is more appropriate to point to a post-industrial era. I suppose that in the days of the internet, you have heard, read, or seen information about the preceding revolutions?

A necessary parenthesis, the word revolution, implies accelerated or violent processes of change, and when it comes to technology, this is the catalyst that transforms civilization itself.

However, to give context, I will mention the technological revolutions on which the next milestone is currently brewing.

Photo by Loren King on Unsplash

The first revolution was agriculture and livestock. It was followed many centuries later by the industrial revolution with steam engines and combustion-based on hydrocarbons.

Photo by Robin Sommer on Unsplash

More recently, the information revolution on computers. Just right now, the next one that seems to be defined by the integration between man and machine takes shape.

Photo by Museums Victoria on Unsplash

Of course, in a paragraph, it is impossible to abstract and synthesizes the last ten thousand years of humanity that science tries to unravel. Who knows what happened before the most recent ice age, when megafauna walked the earth. Not to mention the history based on the sacred books that span nearly six thousand years.

How many convergences of knowledge and experiences with technological expressions were there?

At the beginning of the third decade of the 21st century, convergence is faster than before. Well, at least based on what we know. Although, if one assumes as valid that Homo Sapiens Sapiens appeared approximately 200 thousand years ago. I wonder how many civilizations have arisen and disappeared since then?

A matter that perhaps in the future can be elucidated with the next generation of technology.

So this new incipient revolution, like the preceding ones, involves per se an economy highly intertwined with the political as ways of living for man in society.

Photo by Arian Darvishi on Unsplash

Transition to the digital economy

There are many books on economics. You can access these in digital format. No! That is not the digital economy. LOL.

Out joke; For millennia, the economy involved the knowledge through which people created companies and governments to take advantage of scarce resources and thus satisfy food and protection needs. Even going further in search of reaching desires crossing borders and limits.

Institutions with their means and methods to achieve these ends increased in size and complexity as the population grew. Of course, war, disease, and famine also began to re-start, giving way to different civilizations. Although, I doubt the extinction and appearance of the same. These mutated into new forms, bringing with them all the cultural baggage.

In this sense, today are also on the verge of transformation. The economy goes from the analog plane to a digital expression, where artificial intelligence and automation make the production process more efficient and cheaper.

So, figuratively speaking, both you and I are on a four-legged table moving, threatening to lash us out of it.

Until today, well, I'm not so sure. Your place in the world and the traditional economy were defined by arrangements of tangible factors, such as those that determine production (labor, land, and capital).

Now. With the convergence of technologies, intangible goods coexist with tangible values ​​in an extended universe that some call cyberspace or metaverse. Sure, from a broad sense. That does not guarantee your continuity, at least that you adapt.

Therefore, it is urgent to know how we could fit within the digital economy based on the pillars that support the table where we are mounted.

  • AI Artificial Intelligence (Processing)

  • 5G Networks (transmission)

  • IoT Internet of Things (integration)

  • CC Cloud Computing (Storage)

Although, we can also get off the table and get out of the system. But, I suspect that it is not as easy as it seems. Moreover, the system's owners will not allow it; So easily.

In case you decide to adapt to the system. You must know that there will be a reduction in the workforce. A consequence of large-scale automation. Is that will absorb jobs where it is cheaper and more efficient.

I wonder, Will there be enough work and income for everyone in the future of the optimistic techno?

Let me give you my opinion. NO

Answer me, why do some governments and organizations, supposedly philanthropic, propose the universal basic income?

However, if the promise of more efficient and cheaply technological progress; It has the potential to solve the economy's core problems; Such as the scarcity and quality of goods and services through optimization. So, why do the discourse and actions point to the reduction of the population? It smells stale.

Common sense tells me, get out of the system. Although, that's easier said than done.

Meanwhile, it is convenient to apply the robot-proof. This way can determine the jobs you can still do. Well! Until the singularity appears, the awakening of the machines, and the absolute domination of transhumanism.

Yes, I am not very optimistic about our future. Maybe all those catastrophic movies and dystopian novels make me dazed; As well as the world health situation that today seems a global totalitarian threat to divide the people into two camps.

Yes, apply the robot-proof. Jobs that require physical and repetitive skills are highly susceptible to being automated. To learn new skills that involve creativity and art.

Ask yourself, what can I do that machines can't?

Here the dilemma between human and artificial intelligence comes into play.

In 1983, Gardner proposed a theory to understand; What human intelligence is and How it works. Incidentally, the development of AI seems to be exploring these concepts with notable progress.

In this sense, the scientist abstracts and identifies several areas: linguistics, naturalism, music, logic-mathematics, existential, corporal-kinesthetic, interpersonal, intrapersonal, and spatial.

Almost forty years later, we see products like GPT-3 in the area of ​​linguistics that astonishes but is still far from natural language. AIVA or OpenAI Jukebox that compose music autonomously. Google AI, TensorFlow, and Microsoft Azure in the area of ​​mathematics-logic. Kiva or Atlas were developed by Amazon and Robot Dynamics, respectively, to perform physical tasks or the developments in Meta or Unity that seek to create a metaverse where you live a digital life.

However, in areas likes naturalism, that is, being able to feel where nature is going, such as the existential and interpersonal that involve the human soul, there are no advances yet. I guess something like that is impossible to recreate.

So the only way for you to successfully participate in the future in the digital economy is to learn to be creative in activities such as:

  • Write beyond the instrumental. To create a story that involves senses and feelings. Something impossible for machines. Well! Until now.

  • Speak in public eloquently about a matter that is unattainable in AI, such as the purpose of the human soul.

  • Program beyond elementary routines such as creating a new programming language

  • Leading people involves recognizing the humanity of others and acting accordingly for the synergy of all.

  • Negotiate non-ponderable goods and services.

Only to name a few.

The problem is what the world that techno-optimists trans-humanists aspire it. Well, I don't know if they already exist. It is the extinction of what makes us human, and for this, they work incessantly under a rational calculation that excludes the human variable.

Photo by Possessed Photography on Unsplash

Final thoughts

Although capitalism is not the justest economic system of humanity, there is no doubt that it still dominates the world.

In the past, alternative economic models based on central planning failed abruptly, bringing death and desolation to the population.

Today, it seems that the bet is to give control to the AI ​​to solve the system's deficiencies. However, the problem is the imperfection of the human being, and artificial intelligence is part of the accumulation of knowledge reached by man. Well, some propose machine learning as a solution. But, what is the guarantee that these self-generated algorithms will make the best decision for humans?

A reasonable fear!

Technology must empower man. However, it seems that the goal is to replace it and reduce it as much as possible. In the meantime, people will lose meaning and purpose; Making them disposable.

The success of capitalism is its executioner, by creating small almighty elites clad in Big Tech, Big Farma, or any Big organism that snatch freedom, privacy, sovereignty over the body and exterminate any form of democracy.

Perhaps we are witnessing the greatest dictatorship in brief human history.

An original article by @Jnavedan

Cover image by Jievani Weerasinghe on Pixabay 

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