A shiny new year is starting, and the thoughts of Flip the Media contributors naturally lean toward things we want to see in the technology and social media worlds in 2014. Our ideas range from the global to the personal, and from the profoundly serious to frivolous. Maybe you’ve wished for some of these things as well. Maybe you have different, or even conflicting ideas. There’s just one way to find out – read on, and see what we’re wishing for in 2014.
From Hanns-Peter Nagel:
Deltaprintr – I’m not a tech tinkerer or engineer at heart but 3D printers seem just so full of possibility. I want one just to play around with it. The Deltaprintr seems like a reasonable choice, it’s affordable (so no harm done if I don’t use it) and it’s (almost) funded through Kickstarter.
Make Facebook a Public Utility – Large parts of our economy are increasingly powered by one commodity: our data. The problem is that the (profit) motivations of those collecting the data are often not in our best interest. As a result, privacy is disappearing with potentially large negative effects for our democracy. I think many people agree that more regulation is needed but I think we need to do something a little bit more radical: turn social media, the largest source of data collection, into a public utility so that the people who use it have a say on how it is run. This way we can still have all the benefits of the “social revolution” but have more control over what happens to our data.
Herb Lester Maps – I’m sucker for maps and these are beautifully designed and unique in that they offer themed tours, like fancy bars in Manhattan or how to find old LA. They even have a map of Seattle.
From Dawn Roscoe:
The holidays bring a different kind of energy each year yet ‘Peace on Earth’ and ‘Good Will Towards All’ are two phrases I meditate on each holiday season. We are in a rapidly changing age, one where technology and data are allowing us to hack ourselves while making us lonelier than ever. So in this season of wishes and dreams these are my digital dreams for our future.
Equality: Free internet for everyone on the planet.
From Kathy Matosich, Cohort 13:
Here’s an App/Technology that I’d love to have that I’ve made up:
What to Wea(the)r
Traveling between Montana and Seattle a lot lately, packing has been rough. From jacket weather near the coast to -20 in the mountains, I’d love to have an app that has an inventory of my closet, and I can input my destination(s) and it advises me on what to pack based on the various weather reports. I could input my activities (say cross country skiing) and it would add my gloves and insulated tights to the list.
*Bonus points if it can fit it all in a carry-on size suitcase.
And from me, Carolyn Higgins
The beauty of the early telephone and the mail services lie in large part in their simplicity and their universality. Today, social media overwhelms us with choices. Just as the wonderful thing about newest technology is that it offers so many ways to connect, its bane is – that it offers so many ways to connect. How many platforms do I want to be beholden to? Do I really want to follow subsets of the same people on multiple platforms? Just as history offers some interesting parallels between communication technologies then and now, it also shows how the shell game of competition has reduced choice in the past. Case in point: the car industry in the U.S. in the early 1920’s was comprised of about 2000 separate companies. We all know how drastically those choices were pared down. So what will happen to our platforms for connecting, sharing, and (in the case of many of us on Pinterest) hoarding? I’m hoping that we’ll achieve greater ease of use, to say nothing of greater control. Will a new contender show up and upstage Facebook? Will someone create an antidote for Pinterest addiction?
I don’t have a concrete blueprint for my technological or social media wishes – but I’m hoping that as a species, we’ll collectively develop the wisdom we need to be the masters of our own technologies – rather than its slaves.
What about you? What do you wish for in 2014? Does technology hold the key to the problems you want to see solved?