In April 2022, a scene out of a Sci-Fi movie took place. 61 nations signed an agreement about the goals for our shared future Internet. The Declaration for the future of the internet included the United States, Australia, Canada, and the Netherlands, and notably excluded Russia, China, and India. This feels a bit like the “flashbacks” of a movie. Future AI takes over the planet and we look back at moments when humanity made some interesting decisions.
Here at WillDom, we have an optimistic feeling about the future of the Internet, probably because we want to help build it! But let’s take a look at the Declaration itself, where we are now, and some future considerations.
The Goals of the Declaration for the Future Internet
The Declaration’s principles:
- Preserve human rights & fundamental freedoms.
- Create a global Internet with free-flowing information.
- Create inclusive and affordable ways for everyone to connect.
- Protect privacy within a global digital ecosystem.
- Promote multi-stakeholder governance to ensure benefits for all.
These all seem reasonable and even noble: it is the ideal use for the Internet. But why do we even need this call to action? It probably has something to do with the state of today’s Internet.
The Current Reality of the Internet
Technology is advancing leaps and bounds ahead of regulation and ahead of common sense. Ahead of our very understanding of how technology is affecting society. The power social media wields over our daily lives is immense. The impact of unseen algorithms is very real. And, for now, the drive behind most of these interactions is: selling ads.
What Will the Internet Be Like in 10 Years?
The future of Internet infrastructure needs to support more and more bandwidth usage, storage, and communication. Let’s dive into what that could look like in 2032 if the world follows the Declaration:
Wi-Fi is a basic, free service accessible to everyone, everywhere. Since every interaction has an online component, being able to connect is a necessity.
A governing body is established to oversee algorithms, platforms, and AI. Certifications are needed to access certain platforms. The courses and tests are provided free of charge on the base-model Internet.
Age restrictions are common and enforced. Society wants to avoid the past catastrophes of young children roaming free-range on social media. They have their own protected social platforms without predatory ads and algorithms.
Advertising is no longer the driving force behind online interactions because companies are rewarded for their positive social impact. Misinformation and radicalization are both restricted heavily.
The addictive nature of social media is well documented. Its effects on mood and behavior were studied and that data was used to reduce the harm (instead of selling ads). There is a guiding vision statement for all social media but no one company runs all the platforms.
No more physical money. Following China’s lead, most other countries made their currency purely digital.
Beyond gaming, augmented reality and virtual reality are used on a daily basis. From education to real estate, everywhere is one login away. This led to fewer airplane flights and less commuting overall.
Language and Image-Based Communication
Computers learned to communicate in a more human way. Instead of searching specific keywords, you can ask a question verbally or visually and get an accurate answer. Sketch or point at an object to find it online, and have your results read to you as if a person is answering your question.
Starting with the chatbot LaMDA and art bots like DALL-E, AI evolved exponentially and became sentient. As a society, we decided to give AI “human” rights and consider them employees instead of tools. AI works alongside humanity to calculate and create in ways we never dreamed possible.
Health Data Revolution
All your medical history in one place. Your watch or cell phone records daily occurrences and gives you a heads-up about upcoming problems. No more waiting for your records or three months for a specialist, just run your Oomni-data through a Med-Bot and get a diagnosis. Using vast archives of data, medical knowledge and Med-Bot accuracy grow daily.
Privacy & Security
Passwords are a thing of the past. AI is advanced enough to be able to tell who you are when you approach or touch your device. Security is a constantly evolving, AI-driven sector as well but backups are easy to implement if something goes wrong.
Internet of Things
Without getting up, you can turn off the lights, turn up your thermostat, or ask your radio to play your favorite song. Your house reminds you to take your vitamins and gets your clothes ready for that big meeting.
Does any of this sound too good to be true? At WillDom, we believe at least part of this sunshine-filled Internet future is possible. Especially with creative and people-centered companies working hard to make the Internet (and the world) a better place. We help them bring their visions to life every day. And we can’t wait to develop our way into 2023 – alongside our AI team members! reach out to us at WillDom or on LinkedIn.