Steve Jobs is reported as saying that “if you want to predict the future, the best way is to create it.” Now he probably isn’t the first person to say that, as it is a quote that goes back many decades. However, I can tell you as a futurist, and as the founder of a think tank, I’ve uttered those similar words, not because I heard them, because it’s the reality in the world we live in today. Steve Jobs was right. Now then, I’d like to talk to you about something very serious along these lines.
In the future it will be artificially intelligent computers which are designing our future cars, aircraft, buildings, computer networking systems, social networks, personal technologies, and even our education system, and the way we live our lives. You think it won’t happen, or perhaps you do, but I would submit to you that; this is our future. The question is; what about the creative geniuses of our time, will they be needed? Will we need great artists, designers, engineers, and prototype makers – perhaps not.
Consider someone designing a car, or even an aircraft. If the computer knows everything there is about wind tunnels, coefficient of drag, lift, and airflow, it will design the most efficient transportation device. It will just know how to do it. It won’t matter that you’re the greatest designer in the world, the computer software will build something more efficient than you can. Therefore, how do you beat an artificially intelligent computer which is busy designing new and future concepts? Now you might think that because you are human and you have certain types of creative thought that and understand people, that you can create something that other humans will like, and the computer will not be able to do that.
But that’s where you’re wrong because a computer can look at the very best movies which sold the most tickets, the cars that people buy the most, and rate them highest, and it can put all that information into its artificial intelligent database, and it can take from all the designs of all the products whether they be personal tech or a new building that were “Liked” on Facebook. In fact, if everyone likes your designs, the artificial intelligent computer may make variations of exactly what you’re designing, so how you keep up with it, and keep your job, will you not be needed anymore?
Competing with the computer design machine in the future will not be easy, but there is something inherently creative about the human mind, and if you will step up the pace, work a little harder, and standard creative flow, you will be able to keep up, at least in the near future, as those computers design our long-term future, I just hope there is a place for you in it. Please think on this.