Technological Trends Toward Mobility and Decentralization

Following with startup engineering topics, I’m preparing to start the Stanford Course in 11 days and I’m reading the previous lectures. This time I’m going to share an interesting table with the technologies on the horizon point of continued descentralization and individual mobility.

In the following table, top shown the future technological trends (and some currents) and bottom shown current/ongoing trends in favor of mobility, descentralization and individual empowerment. The links are very interesting.

Technological TrendEffect
[Realtime machine translation](http://idealab.talkingpointsmemo.com/2012/11/microsoft-translator-english-mandarin-simultaneous.php)Reduces importance of native language
[Plug computer](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plug_computer), [Raspberry pi](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raspberry_Pi)Reduces importance of size, location
[Augmented reality](http://www.technologyreview.com/view/509456/the-latest-on-google-glass/)Layer software over the physical world anywhere
[3D printing](http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jQ-aWFYT_SU&feature=youtu.be)Reduces patent/political restrictions on physical goods
[MOOCs](http://www.ted.com/talks/daphne_koller_what_we_re_learning_from_online_education.html)Hyperdeflation of educational costs
[YCRFS9](http://ycombinator.com/rfs9.html)Decentralize entertainment
[Seasteading](http://www.seasteading.org/)Facilitate emigration, reduce political constraints
[Crowdfunding](http://venturebeat.com/2013/01/06/investment-banks-gatekeepers-no-more-as-crowdfunding-changes-the-game/)Reduce importance of Silicon Valley VC, banks
[Pharma cliff](http://www.pharmacytimes.com/publications/supplement/2012/Generic-Supplement-2012/Generic-Market-Overview-Standing-at-the-Top-of-the-Patent-Cliff), [generics](http://blogs.nature.com/news/2012/10/big-pharma-approaching-bottom-of-patent-cliff.html)Complete disruption of US pharmaceutical industry
[Bitcoin](http://bitcoin.org/)Reduce reliance on single reserve currency, banks
[Sequencing](http://www.genome.gov/sequencingcosts/)See your own genome without an MD prescription
[Telepresence robots](http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mz4FshiMu3U&feature=youtu.be), [drones](http://dronegames.co/)Reduce importance of physical location
[360-degree treadmill](http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BQw1tsgrJOs)Permits actual holodeck; reduces importance of location
P2P/BittorrentReduce reliance on centralized backbone
BlogsReduce importance of national opinion journalism
MicroblogsReduce importance of network news outlets
Social networksFriends are now independent of physical location
Laptops, smartphones, tabletsComputation is now independent of location
Video chatReduce importance of physical location
Search engines, ebooksAccess all information, anytime, for free
E-commerceReduce importance of physical store location
 

The author of essay, Balaji S. Srinivasan says:

The overall trend here is very interesting. Focus simply on social networks for a moment and think about the proportion of your Facebook friends who live outside of walking distance. Since the early 1800s and the advent of the telegraph, the telephone, airplanes, email, and now social networking and mobile phones, this proportion has risen dramatically. One of the results is a sharp reduction in the emotional cost of changing your physical location, as you no longer fall out of touch with the majority of your friends.


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