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Where Do We Go From Here?

Earth

If you take a look at the news these last few months, it really does seem like the world is going to hell in a handbasket sometimes.

Ebola. ISIS. Ukraine. Drought. Fires. And so much more.

Science fiction is about taking the trends we see now and pushing them into the future. How will global warming affect our world? Our culture? Our capabilities?

What would the discovery of a “warp drive” do to us?

If aliens ever did make contact with us, what impact would that have on us as a society.

Today, let’s play science fiction historian. Fast-forward 100 years, and list the five major trends that shaped the century worldwide. For extra credit, how would you place one or all of these trends into a science-fiction plot?

1 thought on “Where Do We Go From Here?”

  1. Well, gosh… I think the no-brainer answer is climate change. It’s going to be a while before this is generally accepted to be a human problem, which means that weather is going to be a substantial issue around the globe. The third world is going to be hit particularly hard, and there will probably be a lot of casualties, not just in terms of human life, but animal and plant life as well. That, in turn, is going to have an impact on global food resources. We’ll see less choice in our supermarkets, prices will go up, and a lot of people will slide further into economic ruin. I think what we see in Blade Runner isn’t too far off the mark, though I suspect it’s a bit optimistic.

    Because of this I think we’re also going to see people becoming serious about population control. I’m foreseeing forced abortion and sterilization in some places. I’m inclined to say that this isn’t going to be good for women, but I think you could, if you worked at it, make an argument that it’s going to fall more on men, at least in terms of sterilization. That’s actually common sense in countries where a man considers that his wealth is at least in part reckoned by the number of children he fathers.

    Since both fossil fuel use and garbage are enormous problems that will only get worse before they get better, the development of biodegradable “plastics” made from plant material would be a huge boon. However, if the climate is so damaged that growing such crops becomes a problem… well there are a number of ways this could go. Recycling would become mandatory, a scavenger society would grow up around the process — trading recyclable items for food?

    Honestly, this is too big and too depressing. I’m going to stop here. I can see future history sideways, and only a few of the paths look promising.

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