Change is a constant, and however we might forget or passively ignore the fact, it is happening behind our backs, in front of our eyes, above our heads, and at a corner we have not bothered hearing about. For me, the change we have let slide passively with little input apart from buying and always upgrading, is the hunger for digital devices. In the last few years digital devices have become an integral part of our individual ecosystems, and without them we struggle.
A wonderful piece by the Economist It’s a smart world, explores this concept in the world of smart softwares, and in this years’ World 2013 shares out an important milestone: “The number of connected devices to the Internet will exceed the number of people on the planet by a factor of 2 in 2013 according to Cisco, By 2020 some 27 billion unique objects will be connected wirelessly to the Internet- Economist The World 2013“
If we currently have more digital devices than humans by 2 = 14 billion of these devices are part of our lives. So if out of the 7 billion humans 2.45 billion have access to the Internet in 2011. -”The World in 2011: ITC Facts and Figures”, International Telecommunications Unions (ITU), Geneva, 2011.” How did 2.45 billion + humans suddenly find themselves needing 14 billion devices? Making an unscientific assumption that most digital devices need an Internet connection, but then again it is still a ridiculous amount of devices 2 per human.
The seductive commercialization of the device, and the relentless addictive capacity of its features, available, on: whenever, wherever, whatever! 2.45 billion of us have developed a need for more than one. Try this: count how many digital devices you have at home. ( Think… microwave, digital TV, laptops, tablets, phones, sat-nav, digital radio, game consoles, digital heating system, digital alarm…. and we go on) do give yours a count. Now do you see how many of us are part of the 2.45 billion needing more than one device?
To be honest is it a big deal that we have more digital devices than humans by a factor of 2. On first thought very likely not, but then if we differ, consult, communicate, access, share, update, inform, search, pay, track, publish and connect as part of a daily routine, to the point we are often not aware of it… seamlessly blended within our ecosystems fabric with which we interact, work and live by. Is it, should it be our current norm?
The digital devices are here, embedded in our lives. Have we sat back and collectively, as a conversation piece, wondered how this happened, how did suddenly we need to sleep with a smart-phone by our bed, check email during dinner, while waiting for a bus, on the toilet…. what kind of reflective process have we engaged with colleagues friends and family. This propensity for the digital device is it a non negotiable of our own ecosystem?
Do not get me wrong, I love my digital devices, the convenience, versatility, connectedness, and ease of use, are a huge benefit to my own day.
As Terence McKenna states in the video above as the rate of change accelerates over time, the modalities, ecosystems we live by will change to a point we will not be equipped to synthesis, analysis, engage, understand control, and manage these…. it does sound like science fiction…. “By 2020 some 27 billion unique objects will be connected wirelessly to the Internet- Economist The World 2013“, but the science fiction is becoming part of our current narrative, and somehow we have let it slip by or have we?