Who Knows What the Future Holds?

This is oddly intriguing and a bit unsettling. The video, shared in Networked Narratives, shows kids in 1966 chatting about what they envision as the future. So much of it was about Nuclear War, overpopulation, and the end of the world, and it’s sad to think how much was on the minds of these kids.

Another article had drawings of ideas of kids imagining the future, taken from 1961. An artist rendered their ideas as illustrations. Here, mainframe computers were already “serving” us (sort of like the aliens in Twilight Zone).

What about today? I teach young students, and when we have discussions these days about what’s ahead, mostly they seem optimistic, and expect that technology will be able to fix and solve most problems. They are often startled when we do a unit on technology and talk about data, privacy and more. The one significant concern many have? Climate Change. Although, they are less worried for themselves, and seem more worried about animals and ecosystems.

I was also reminded of this picture book — 2030: A Day in the Life of Tomorrow’s Kids — which is more optimistic and fun, following a kid through a day of talking dogs and virtual classrooms, and conveniently ignores most of the social and dehumanizing ramifications of technology.

Which brings us to .. Timbuk 3 … get some shades!

 

Peace (today and tomorrow),
Kevin

 

 

3 Comments
  1. I was 20 in 1966, just a bit older than some of the kids in that first video. What struck me was how articulate they were in expressing their ideas.

    I’m guessing these were English kids, so the one talking about White and Black people, and rich and poor, stood out to me.

    Thanks for the stimulating post.

  2. Kevin,
    Loved the video about the children talking about the future. Some of it they were sot on. People being reduced to statistics, automation and computers taking over our lives with fewer jobs for people (industry is working on that one), booming population, land put aside solely for recreation, the small house movement (England hasn’t quiet got to the stage of Japan yet), animals kept in batteries so we can grow them larger for food, the sea rising (but not because of satellites), more efficient (I’m not 100% sold on that one) and apartheid and class (I wish that one was true.)
    How sad so many of them were afraid of nuclear winter and saw that as their future. These kids would be in their 60s now. I wonder how that fear affected them and how they feel about how their lives turned out.
    For me the most striking comment was the one about people being reduced to statistics- how sad that his fears have come true. Social media is truly a double edged sword, both pulling us together and rendering us down to a byte.
    Great post!

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