New Media Technology Future Trends and Renewable Energy Predictions for 2008 by Sepp Hasslberger
What to expect from the world of new media technology for 2008? Health, economy and alternative energy blogger Sepp Hasslberger, contributes his personal view on some of the major trends he sees coming down the line when it comes to new media, search engines, and tacit online cooperation.
Is Google losing its predominant position? How important is going to be the the view of your peers in the future? Are facebook, digg and other popular social media destinations a fad of some sort?
Even more interesting is Sepp Hasslberger's analysis and vision for your renewable future spun by an interesting post on Mashable: is the green tech buzz another fad too? Is going to be government-led or are you going to take it on yourself to change the way we live and use up our natural resources?
New Media Future Overview
When it comes to new media trends, I believe we are living a period of great change, and it will continue throughout this coming year.
I have noticed a distinct change on visitors of my blogs, coming from sites that allow anyone to say "hey, I saw this and I liked it", and as these services grow in number, they make a difference taking some of the steam away from the traditional search engines.
Google May Be Starting to Lose Its Predominant Position
Even Google, undisputed king of search engines is (or if not, should be) feeling uneasy about changes on the horizon.
Google has big plans to take on Wikipedia with its own service, and to extend Google's offerings far beyond the pure search engine results.
While Google's revenue model is still very effective and is being refined to better please the advertisers, there is some serious competition coming up that probably hasn't even properly registered on Google's radar screens yet. What I am alluding to are services that realize the dream of the "semantic web", a concept to which I first was introduced by Roger Eaton through his AntWeb, or Annotated Web, an idea he had some four years back.
While Eaton and his friends as true programmers were talking interface - some program that would run on people's computers and allow the progressive annotation of the web by human contributors - the reality today is that this service or something very similar, is being offered on the web itself.
Specialized sites such as digg, stumbleupon, reddit and others are starting to make a difference as the number of their users increases fast. They start taking some wind out of Google's sails by providing a more true measure of what people really like to read or watch.
Those sites add something Google does not have: the view of our peers.
Sure, Google attempts to provide just that but it can't quite avoid its results being shaded by advertiser preference and by a certain kowtowing to the official line on important issues.
Not to criticize Google for that, those things come with a highly commercial set-up and with the sheer size the site has grown into.
But watch out Google ... you might find that a lot of users of the net will prefer the more untainted viewpoint of the actual users that comes from peer-to-peer interaction, to the sanitized version you offer today.
Social Networking will Broaden
There is also another trend that may be worth noting: the transformation of the net from websites to dynamic (blog type) websites, to multi-media capable social interaction points.
Facebook, Linkedin, hi5 and other such services with the backup of YouTube and Google Video are definitely on the upswing, and they will become much more important than they are today.
Their ease of use, low cost to the user, and multi media capability will likely make them a preferred channel for citizen reporting, for the publishing of individually or collaboratively produced content.
But even here, the providers would be well advised to curb their dreams of commercialization of the service.
As is already the case with Google, alternatives will spring up from unexpected quarters. Some kind of divine justice that counterbalances the trend of individuals getting lost in the commercial jungle set up by those with money to invest.
Peer-to-peer services that offer the next generation social interaction tools are not far away and we may catch a first glimpse in this coming year.
Users will, and this, in a way, is a perpetual struggle, "take back the net from the corporations" despite all the sophisticated commercial planning.
Some of the great income opportunities that exist today for those providing access to the net or advertising-financed space for others to use may disappear, perhaps very rapidly in some cases.
Mobile computing comes into the picture as a factor in favor of a broadening social network.
The mobile phone and the personal computer will meet somewhere midway and their synthesis will be a boon to social networking. Hopefully there will be increased awareness of the health costs associated with our current microwave-based mobile communication hardware, stimulating a change to other systems that do not have these drawbacks.
The Price We Pay - Privacy
Of course there is a price to pay for all this free access to information.
The price is privacy.
Every time we use one of the social networking services, sign up for a blog or some other free service, we lose a bit of our privacy.
But we may well be turning necessity into virtue here.
As we voluntarily give up more and more of our privacy and our lives become transparent, that concept of transparency will gain importance in other ways as well. Since anyone who is on the net in any significant way is already transparent, we shall be in a much better position to demand that governments and corporations become transparent as well.
Citizen reporting is only a start. We will be turning the tables on government secrecy and with a good justification: We already gave up our privacy. Now it's the government's turn.
This is why I think we will be seeing a move towards more awareness on the issues of privacy and transparency.
The concept of privacy that today accompanies the right of governments to keep from us any significant insight into what they are up to, is losing weight as we have given up much of that privacy already.
One might say down with privacy, long live transparency!
A New Energy Revolution Is Coming
While Mashable "Stupid New Trends: Green Tech" article showcases the "official" and rather ineffective version of what could be another significant development that you may be witnessing in the coming year - here is my own take on cool green technology-based future.
Just like p2p is in the process of taking down the media monopoly, distributed power generation will be the death of the fossil fuel based energy monopoly.
We can talk about going green for a long time, but if we stay within the paradigm, nothing will change just as Mashable says.
What we need is real innovation in technology, where abundant natural resources are put to use that will make the need for oil and the wars for its control a concern of yesterday.
Much work is going into making those abundant resources available to us, but as with the net, the work is being done by individuals, not by corporations or governments.
The more conventional technologies range from energy conservation to solar, wind and water - tides, waves and river hydroelectric without a dam. A lot of work goes into making hydrogen a viable option as a transportation fuel, and into using hydrocarbons more efficiently. Battery technology is taking quantum leaps.
But what is really going to bring a breakthrough is the shift in thinking that is brewing in the undercurrents.
Some are bold enough to think that such forces as gravity, magnetism, and even the energy inherent in space all over the universe can be harnessed for our purposes.
Whatever the breakthrough technology will turn out to be, it will spell the end of the monopoly on energy production.
We will generate our own energy and feed part of it into the grid, reversing the top-down energy supply model into an interconnected one where each node on the network is stable, self sufficient and contributing to the efficiency of the whole.
Originally written by Sepp Hasslberger for Master New Media and first published on December 27 2007 as "New Media Technology and Renewable Energy Trends and Predictions 2008 by Sepp Hasslberger"
About the author:
Sepp Hasslberger is a prolific independent researcher and scholar of physics, alternative energies, space exploration, health and alternative medicine, and more in general in researching and sharing with others ways that can empower individuals to be in greater control of their lives and future. He writes at Hasslberger.com and at Health Supreme and is also the editor of a very rich and informative multi-language health-freedom information site: LaLeva.ccSepp Hasslberger -
blog comments powered by Disqus