So What’s Next?

I’ve learned a lot this semester on media conversion, the history of media and the current state of digital media. But I’ll be honest- the future of digital media is both foreign and slightly scary to me. I am ashamed to admit this, but I didn’t even fully understand what a drone was until earlier this year.  I thought both the 2pac and Michael Jackson Holograms were shameless marketing (and tacky at that), and the movie “Her” with an artificially intelligent robot that starts to “learn” feelings seemed downright ridiculous to me.

Is the future of digital media holograms of dead artists and pizza delivered by drone? I hope not. My hope is that the future involves us being able to interact better with our world. Much like conversion, but even better. Instead of there being an “Internet of Things”, it would be the digitization of more of life’s conveniences. But how would that work? I think Microsoft has a great concept of “the future” from their 2013 concept video portraying what 2020 could look like. Do I believe this vision is just 5 years away? No. But then again, we are so close to the Jetson’s self driving car and Google Glass’ virtual reality, perhaps we are closer to this vision than I think. Imagine if instead of carrying credit cards, licenses, bills- we just had one card that we could add information to. Imagine if that card was more like an ipad screen than a card? (Or we could just get microchips under our skin that allowed us to continually add to them, but that could get tricky with upgrades). And what if utilizing that same card you could make phone calls, read books and watch TV? What if you truly could track your child’s every move while seeing what they are seeing live? Wouldn’t that make everyone feel more secure? Or might it cause abuse of the system?

The future looks bright, but it also looks scary. I am sure at the onset of aviation, some one out there wondered “What if some one used a plane to knock down a building?” Well. Unfortunately, we now all know it could happen. But for 100 years in aviation history, it wasn’t an issue.  Abuse of the system, negligence and misconduct are often the risks we take for innovation. The fact is that the more unsavory minds will Always find a way to misallocate otherwise wonderful technological developments. And so with the future of multimedia, my hope is that the government learns how to control it better than they have thus far.  Because cyber crimes and child pornography are just two of hundreds of new issues we have now that conversion has become mass. I invite you to watch the video below and speculate on which areas we might be closest to.

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