A use case argument for the importance of Earth 2 and the future that lies ahead.
*Warning – ‘Dystopian’ views below*
What does the future hold? What will life be like in 5 years? 10 years? 20 years? The world is advancing at a rate that has never been seen before. And the speed of change is only increasing. Whilst human beings are enjoying the greatest levels of comfort, peace, and general health in history, human beings are also going to have to learn to adapt faster than they ever have before.
The pace of technological change will provide foreseen and unforeseen changes as has been seen with the advent of the internet and more recently social media. However, the most obvious and societal changing repercussion will be the high-tech mechanization of life. Automation of large swathes of jobs will mean that millions and millions of the lower-skilled population of the world will lose their livelihoods.
Just to give you an example, vehicle automation. Driving, in its various forms, provides employment for 12-15% of the global workforce. That is a massive number of people to lose their employment, in what feels like a shorter and shorter time period. Our favorite forward-thinking technology genius put it perfectly:
‘Machine robots are taking over. There will be fewer and fewer jobs that a robot cannot do better.’ This will lead to a massive social challenge. And I think ultimately we will have to have some kind of universal basic income (UBI). I don’t think we’re going to have a choice.’ (Elon Musk, World Government Summit)(Elon Musk, World Government Summit)
This is an opinion piece so feel free to disagree with me but UBI feels almost inevitable. I don’t think it’s by any means a good outcome but an outcome that feels like it’s drawing closer. What this means is that people will have to adapt. Elon Musk continues with this theme:
‘I think universal basic income will be necessary, but the much harder challenge is: How will people then have meaning? A lot of people derive meaning from their employment. If you’re not needed, what is the meaning? Do you feel useless? That is a much harder problem to deal with. How do we ensure the future is a future that we want, that we still like?’(Elon Musk, World Government Summit)
This is where Earth 2 steps in. It will provide opportunities for businesses and avenues to make money that was never there before. It will provide jobs and employment in new and exciting avenues. However, more importantly, it will provide somewhere for enjoyment, meaning, and connection for the fabric of society. It will allow people from all warps of life, rich or poor, to connect and find meaning in life. It will offer people the ability to escape, ski the Alps, swim the Med, drive the Monaco Grand Prix, all at a fraction of the cost of the real world.
In a world where people may find meaning harder to find in the future, Earth 2 becomes ever more important.