Pew Report: Future of the Internet III


Earlier this week, Pew/Internet and American Life Project published its Future of the Internet III report, which is a list of technology predictions. Key findings:

  • The mobile device will be the primary connection tool to the internet for most people in the world in 2020.
  • The transparency of people and organizations will increase, but that will not necessarily yield more personal integrity, social tolerance, or forgiveness.
  • Voice recognition and touch user-interfaces with the internet will be more prevalent and accepted by 2020.
  • Those working to enforce intellectual property law and copyright protection will remain in a continuing arms race, with the crackers who will find ways to copy and share content without payment.
  • The divisions between personal time and work time and between physical and virtual reality will be further erased for everyone who is connected, and the results will be mixed in their impact on basic social relations.
  • Next-generation engineering of the network to improve the current internet architecture is more likely than an effort to rebuild the architecture from scratch.

Nothing really too earth-shattering based on what we know and discuss today. More predictions about the evolution of mobile communications can be found here, and also make sure to take a look at predications related to developments in the Internet user interface. Unfortunately, most predictions seem to be very conservative.

With regards to education, Judy Breck refers to a related Wired report that says that by  “By 2020, Access to Internet Will Be in Everyone’s Pocket. This is indeed a “FABULOUS opportunity to reconfigure education.” However, in order for that to happen we need more educators to start thinking about the use of student-owned digital tools (see my earlier post here) in schools (and outside of them as well).

 Image Credit: “Gypsy_fortune_teller” from Silverisdead’s photostream:


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