I thought I was an Optimist #edcmooc

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The second week of EDCMOOC: we look to the future. What is what we almost always do. Because the future is always what starts immediately after the now. So constantly we are exposed to the future. Although, or perhaps because it is inevitable, the future is very popular:

Future_IxquickThe course is in terms of the future particularly about the technolFuture_Googleogy that will support and influence our learning, our work and our lives. The look in the past dealt with the issue rather abstract but in the following movies very specific ideas are presented:

1. A day of glass

My favourite scenes:

  • 0:41 choose the day’s outfit on screen instead of rummage and take everything out of the closet and then not wearing it anyway. Helps to keep order!
  • 0:35 a calendar overview, however I would want to have it in the bathroom or kitchen. I guess technically it’s no problem 🙂
  • 1:40 photovoltaic system: great, do not wait for the future
  • 3:10 files actually move away or somewhere else, that time saving and makes work easier.
  • 4:49 recognize animal tracks with augmented reality

I can imagine quite a lot of this and would like to use it. Especially when it comes down to not only spend more time with technical toys and thereby degenerate into a couch potato, but if it helps me to live my life as I enjoy it and to sense my environment even better. Technique that would help me reliably to distinguish edible from poisonous mushrooms – that would be really handy. Or tells me to buy the shoes if they really fit the dress in the closet at home.

Also recommended is the enhanced video with further explanations:

The second film I also judge quite positive. But doubts were coming while watching this:

2. Productivity Future Vision

My favorite features:

  • 0:13 translation glasses, that’s like having a babelfish not in but at your head.
  • 0:36 Augmented Reality Navigation – from personal reasons, my favorite
  • 0:50 electronic notepad – and I thought, I’m totally modern because I use Evernote! Since I can in fact save photos / names and notes to it. But not quite as elegant as in the movie.
  • 3:14 like video conferencing, only in cool
  • 4:46 the classic kitchen board for scheduling, news, purchase planning, in modern, all can participate. I am a potential customer!

All beautiful, all designed. But what does it cost? Who can afford that? How is the situation for schools that do not have access to the technical helpers? Because they have no money for this project? Will there be funding through the manufacturers? And who will decide on content of the education then? What percentage of people on this planet will actually have access to these technologies? On Youtube, someone commented:


and in another discussion someone wrote, „Oh, so there will be in 2020 will still bake sales in schools, how nice.“ New is great but used-to is better? I was a little queasy when I caught myself at the thought. I see myself as a modern and open-minded person. And yet I see some of those subjects critically.

Some are even a little scary to me, as the next film:

3. Sight

  • In Minute 0:57 I am scared by these eyes!
  • 2:31 is modern life that we have no more pictures of our families, our best vacations or pictures of our favorite artists on the wall? Is it all just in our heads? I’m afraid I’m totally out of fashion …
  • 3:36 live coaching, how nice. If you do not have to think nor be responsible for the consequences, but the solution is „right beforeyour eyes“…
  • 5:48: Finally, a picture! Van Gogh is also, or just to impress her?
  • 6:15 „Sight is not responsible and will not refund unsuccessful romantic Endeavors“ So, who is then responsible for ensuring that the evening went wrong? He himself, because he is using a dating app and rely on it? Her, because she knew that he uses „Sight“ and knew nothing of the app? She had relied that he would use it responsibly and now she feels betrayed…
  • 6:38 without words!

I have a strong dislike for „Sight“ because it is an extension of the body. A technical manipulation.

Augmented reality - heads up display concept

Also normal corrective appliances (glasses, contact lenses) are manipulation of the body. As well as prothesis replacing missing body parts. No one would seriously argue that these things are bad. Of course, one can argue that a technical assistance as „Sight“ is nothing different, too. Perhaps not even the use of the app which is giving live support on successful social behaviour is reprehensible. What if someone has poor social skills and the deficit would be so great that it would be recognized as a disease – it would surely be great if this person would have a chance to be with an app for social behavior better integrated into society? He could make up for what was missed in any of the child’s socialization or has gone wrong. But where does the necessary medical assistance stop that is broadly accepted by society? And where does unfair Body Tuning, including manipulating and deceiving other people start? It is an ethical debate. When I see how society is divided over the need for drug treatment of AD(H)D, depression and other things, I think that there are big things ahead of us.

4. Charlie 13


I am your father! While the single mother leads a compliant life and expects this also from her son, he learns unexpectedly that outside the fence there is another world than he has known. The injection of the chip is a kind of initiation rite, but Charlie can not accept it as entry into the adult world. Rather, it would permanently remove him from his father. In minute 12:13 the cop promises that Charlie will be safe forever and must never be afraid of anything. Charlies Level of „no fear“ is far from this and makes him – well, more advanced than the adults who have just joined the system, or does he fall just inconsiderate in the dangerous role of the outsider?

With other students I’ve chatted about how far we would go. How much privacy would you give up in favor of more security. Should we rebel against? Or see what we can benefit from and participate? How long? What is OK and what is useless, except just to be constantly monitored. But not guarded, protected. CCTV e.g. is discussed here and there critically. Does all this not make us even more vulnerable?

5. Plurality

I like:

  • 0:46: the fingerprint as a car or house keys
    overall the whole technique, as it is already used in the other films

I do not like:

  • 1:10 „You can’t do anything without the Grid knowing…“ Sounds like 1984 an, doesn’t it?
  • 1:50 an important question to privacy is provided, but not answered …

Sight, Charlie 13 and Plurality got me back into the world of Shadowrun books which my former roommate brought to my attention (thanks, Michi!). They belong to the genre of fantasy and science fiction. But while reading I recognized a lot in these fantastic stories, what I had heard in the media already (eg corporations replaced political institutions, an ID and payment system that also enables to track each user exactly) … So there again is the  same, recurring problem: join it – because there is supposedly no other way – or refuse the use and be a stubborn-headed freak at best or otherwise  be an illegal item that needs to be turned off at worst?

Further material:

There’s still more:

Related articles of other course participants:


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