phones sz“They promised us life in space, flying cars, and jetpacks but all we got were pocket-sized rectangles containing all human knowledge.” We love this quote (and look closely at the table).

This week coffee social turned to talk of technology and predictions for the future. I re-watched ‘Back to the Future II’ recently, which came out in 1989 – the year I graduated from high school!   Set in the year 2015, Marty has a hover board but no smart phone.  It’s difficult to predict the future, especially the things we haven’t yet imagined.

It’s equally interesting what stays the same. I’m typing right now on essentially a fancy version of an old-fashioned typewriter with the screen as my paper.  Delete is handier than whiteout, but still, you’d think by now we’d have created a more advanced form of communication.  Even my iPhone uses just a teeny tiny typewriter to communicate (yes, there is Siri, but she doesn’t seem to understand me and talking out loud to your device can be awkward in public).

So what of the future?  Will this QWERTY keyboard finally become obsolete?  I hope so, but the alternatives are hard to imagine.  Several around the table entertained the idea of a more psychic connection to our devices.  Perhaps we won’t even think of them as separate from ourselves.  If we eliminate the need for manual input and go straight to brain control, I’m a bit scared.  I have a lot more control over my hands than I do my thoughts.  If my automated house started responding to my thinking I can imagine blinds zipping up and down, coffee brewed when I really shouldn’t have it, notes sent that I never intended to actually say…who knows what kind of mayhem my monkey brain could create!

Your guess for the future is as good as mine, so record your predictions now (with your old QWERTY keyboard or even older pen) and we’ll check back in twenty years to see if we even came close!

Written by Natasha Juliana – Curious about working at WORK?  Try it for free.  Curious about Coffee Social?  Join us Tuesdays at 10 AM.