What is the most important new technology for solving world problems
Have you ever stopped and wondered at the implications of your ? While sitting at home, you are fully connected to the world at large. You get a wide assortment of channels, each providing specific genres of information. Unbelievable amounts of information and data are being shared in one single day. Therefore, it is no wonder that the age in which we live is known as the Information Age. Yet, the world we live in is not perfect. There is war, hunger, unrest, and poverty. Where half of the world sees a bright future ahead, the other half is still mired in dark problems. Problems that ideally should not even exist in a world so advanced.
It would be unfair to say nations are completely oblivious to the suffering of other nations. The UN has established organizations like UNESCO and WHO to help other countries with health and cultural problems. Yet, this has only been able to help a tiny fraction of the people affected. With global problems comes the need for a global solution. Currently, the only technology we have, capable of functioning on a global scale is the internet. The internet is hardly new, but it is in a constant state of evolution. Internet trends catch on everywhere, ignoring geographical, ethnic, racial and cultural differences. Things go viral and garner attention from millions of people within minutes. The internet even acts as an umbrella for the development of other technologies. So is it too much of a stretch to imagine that this technology can be used to save the world? This blog discusses several areas in which the internet has promising uses.
Reducing Global Unemployment
Over the years since its creation, the internet itself has created millions of new jobs. Consider a website on the internet. The website requires developers, SEO experts, technical writers, media experts, marketing experts and so on. Now consider how many websites exist on the internet and you can get an idea of the magnitude of possibilities. We live in an age where AI and automation are taking over traditionally human jobs. Visit a car assembly line and you’re bound to see special robots carrying out most of the tasks. Head to your local McDonald’s and you’ll see a self-checkout machine in place of the cashier. In contrast, the internet is creating new jobs, impacting the global unemployment rate positively.
Another aspect to consider in internet-based employment is the redundancy of different geographical and physical barriers. Jobs created by the internet can be executed by anyone, regardless of physical location. In many cases, the internet even eliminates the need for a common language. Non-native English speakers can code a website just as efficiently as a native English speaker. And even if there is absolutely no way around two-way communication, Google has rudimentary translation support in Google Translate. Ethnic and cultural bias is eliminated in favor of productive individuals. In fact, employees can be chosen from various locations in multiple countries around the world.
Yet another aspect to consider is that the internet supports self-employment on an unprecedented scale. Setting up a website is not as complicated as it used to be. Once you have a website, you can start an online business of your choice. Individuals and small businesses without a big physical presence can still make their online presence huge. In many cases, you don’t even need your own website. People can act as an agent for an online business or offer their services on freelancing sites.
Giving Global Issues Visibility
Before the internet, there was a disconnect or at least a lag between people. One person coming to know of an incident happening in another part of the world could take weeks or months. This gap was somewhat reduced by telephones and fax machines, but neither offers the visibility the internet can. The internet has the capability to take a person sitting in his living room into the life of another person. Social media and video/image sharing platforms have brought humankind closer together than ever anticipated. While this may not exactly be a direct solution to world problems, it does have its benefits. Viral videos have focused international attention on atrocities across the world before and will do so again. Content shared in war-torn countries give us glimpses into the suffering of the survivors of the aftermath. This visibility has the chance to bring a problem before the people with the power to fix it. In an indirect way, internet visibility brings about the attention required for change
Educate the Less Fortunate
The internet is quite literally the store of the entire world’s knowledge up to this point. From the nuances of Socrates’ dialog to the creation of the atom bomb, the internet knows all. People including students, teachers, and professionals access learning resources on the internet every day. Generally, the information on the internet is given out without any price. This presents a unique opportunity to educate people who have unfortunately been denied the opportunity due to circumstance. In today’s world, everybody should have the right to basic education. Even beyond, the internet can educate less developed countries about practices in developed countries relating to hygiene, economy, and politics. The internet can be used to relay information that would be of benefit to the less fortunate.
Prevent Future Problems
This is quite similar to educating people. Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it is something we all hear. It is actually a very true statement. Developed countries have moved past a history of wars and battles and intrigue. Nevertheless, many developing countries are still locked in conflict. By educating individuals about the wastefulness and repercussions of war, the internet may prevent new ones. By educating people about hygiene and sanitation, future epidemics of cholera and infections can be prevented. As a preventive tool, the internet offers a unique way to reach the people involved. A good example is the feminist revival on social media, educating people on equality, and preventing misogynistic tendencies from growing.
As the proverbial fountain of knowledge, the internet can provide you with information on anything from to global financial crises. However, like all tools, the internet is only as good as the user. It is up to us as users to responsibly use the internet to help people still suffering across the world. Like any tool, it can be used in the right way or the wrong way. The choice, ultimately, resides with us as individuals.