It should come as no unpopular or surprising statement when it is said that over the last 20 years advancements made in human technology (especially in regards to the internet and the computer) have improved so significantly that the world at large would be unrecognizable to an individual who passed away in the mid-1980s or even the early 1990s. It is truly staggering to fathom and comprehend how rapidly technological innovation has made marked strides in such a short period of only a decade or two. Indeed, in 1999, the internet was in its infancy; Y2K was a serious fear for many Americans and people across the world, and cell phones were a novelty.
While technology has brought about serious benefits for humanity (people are living longer now than ever before thanks to rapid medical advancements, instant communication abilities have made it possible for people to keep in touch across the world with ease, and more), there also have been many drawbacks. Mental health conditions (especially among young people) have risen dramatically in recent decades. Additionally, social etiquette, and communication tendencies among westerners (and especially Americans) have changed irrevocably and often for the worst. Young people have struggled immensely with socialization, traditional dating has all but ceased to occur on a large scale, and fewer people claim that they have close friends. These facts are very troubling.
Another technological development that will likely set the course for technological tendencies moving forward is artificial intelligence. In a Terminator-like reality, humanity has begun to pioneer “independently thinking” computers and software that will likely put millions of jobs at risk and could cause economic catastrophe moving forward as it advances. Corporations everywhere are quick to adopt this technology and see it as a way to streamline business and cut costs; McDonald’s is now partnering with Google to implement AI in the fast food industry- by tracking and collecting data regards to people’s orders.