Random Observation/Comment #803: I’d be a pessimist if I was so damn joyful all the time.
Why this List?
There’s too much loom, doom and gloom (is that the phrase?) in this world. Sometimes we just need to stop and smell the roses. I’m still hopeful that AI won’t take over everything and humanity is reduced to doing expensive manual labor now that software development and middle management is fully automated and optimized on making money. At least we’ll always be non-fungible.
- AI innovation – Even though it’s scary how fast things are accelerating, I still think all of the tools together will build a more vibrant creator economy that leads to a more sustainable economy with more focus on enjoying life and building real world relationships.
- Renewable energy advancements – Solar, wind, and fusion are becoming more efficient and affordable, which can hopefully provide cleaner alternatives to fossil fuels. I’m just waiting for the Rick and Morty crystal reactors.
- Electric vehicle adoption – We may finally have electric vehicle adoption, which only took 20 years. It would be nice to see more trucks convert their Diesel engine fleets. Although the more pessimistic side to this is that the electricity used to charge the cars are a majority supported by fossil fuels.
- Declining global poverty – Extreme poverty rates have significantly dropped over the past few decades. There’s still a huge gap of wealth between the 1% and 99%.
- Improvements in healthcare – I’m not going to fall for the biomed stock pick again, but there are amazing medical breakthroughs with gene editing (CRISPR!) that’s are revolutionizing treatment.
- mRNA Vaccines – Even though I’m pessimistic about companies being greedy, I do think the cost of medicine should go to 0. We’ll also see more trial-based experimentation and longevity fountain of youth pills coming around.
- Rise of telemedicine and mental wellness – Remote healthcare options are extremely convenient and I think the Gen-Y and international stigma around talking about mental health has been lifted for a new generation.
- Space exploration – James Web Telescope is mostly out of the news, but the data it’s collecting and renderings of nebulas is still super cool. I’m glad to see private SpaceX progress bringing more commercial competition.
- Advancements in Quantum computing – There hasn’t been much news covering quantum computers, but I do think there’s a massive unlock if this technology reaches consumer scale.
- Ocean cleanup efforts – I’ve always wondered about that plastic island in the Pacific Ocean that’s the size of Texas.
- Plant-based diets and lab-grown beef – The process for making the ‘impossible’ or ‘beyond’ meats still needs to get cheaper, but it could reduce the demand for cattle and generation of CO2 in the atmosphere from cow farts. The lab-grown beef experimentation (while gross to think about) is also promising to reducing the farm conditions needed to sustain our beef consumption globally.
- Open-source collaboration – I remember reading some stat that 95%+ of projects (especially those in enterprise SaaS products) are made up of code published as open source initiatives. That MIT license is pretty powerful.
- Free online education – You can take all the MIT, Harvard, and Stanford courses basically for free posted to YouTube. If you have access to the internet, then you have access to knowledge (with the right motivation and will power to not be distracted by cat videos).
- Advanced learning methods – This is especially true with AI learning assistants demo’d within Khan Academy using chatbot teaching assistants (Khanmigo! – like conmigo, or “with me” in Spanish; so clever)
- Global connectivity – The internet continues to connect people around the world, fostering cross-cultural understanding and collaboration. The world definitely flattened and productivity can work at scale.
- Sustainable fashion – Ethical and sustainable fashion is gaining traction, reducing the industry’s environmental impact. I think fashion is still a powerful cultural influence and provides a lot of necessary retail therapy.
- Youth activism – Young people are leading the charge in advocating for social and environmental change by voting and building new projects. Even becoming “an influencer” has some responsibility. I don’t think it’s purely just ‘wokeness’ – it’s just actively participating in making the world a better place.
- Investment in Infrastructure – Improvements in early warning systems and infrastructure are helping communities better prepare for natural disasters. This is all a reaction to climate change.
- Inclusivity and diversity – I think a lot of the ideas on optimistic changes comes from thinking about the lack of awareness I had on these issues when growing up. I see today that society is becoming more inclusive and diverse, valuing the unique perspectives and experiences of all individuals.
- DeSci and Citizen Science – Decentralized Science initiatives almost makes up for all the token grifting from Web3. It’s disrupting the subscription-based organizations creating paywalls for publishing articles on important topics. There’s also this citizen science movement for sharing data on the world around us.
- Shift away from Ads – Will advertising still exist? Yes, of course. I just hope we’re paying the right companies that directly support the people creating the content. I’m more than happy to be a Patreon subscriber to the artists.
- Creator economy – The control of media seems more friendly across the creator economy. It’s so interesting to see the proliferation of high value content coming from YouTubers instead of TV studios. This is all getting better with AI-assisted tools.
- Art and culture – The arts continue to inspire and bring people together, transcending borders and fostering empathy. While I admit I don’t understand most modern art, visiting museums is always on my travel agenda. Will Generative AI artwork with text-to-video kill creativity? Probably not. I am worried about deep fakes though.
- Collaboration on conservation – There’s joint initiatives across governments, NGOs, and local communities to protect and preserve endangered species and their habitats. Save the penguins!
- LGBTQ+ Rights Advocacy – In general, there’s a lot more opportunity to connect with people that can empathize with struggle and come together.
- Sports diplomacy – I’ve found hope that a whole country can come together for sports. It’s sometimes dividing between fans, but isn’t it a beautiful thing?
- Breadth of music – Maybe not everything should be music, but I really enjoy exploring stations and finding new artists and creative people
- Decentralization – There’s a glimmer of hope towards creating technology that has a higher participation and stake for collaboration. We must fight Moloch!
- Kindness of 1 – Even if a broader “society” is crappy, I’ve always found kindness in the individuals that are willing to help people through mentorship or just random acts of kindness.
- Resilience and adaptability – Despite the challenges we face, humanity’s resilience and adaptability gives me some hope. Hope is a powerful thing.
~See Lemons Optimistic