Many people seem to get stuck in whatever time period in which they were born when it comes to their image of innovation and what is next for the world. They have a hard time imagining that the world is going to be substantially different, and they may have a tendency to believe that the world in which they were born is somehow the most normal one and that all others are simply deviations from that norm. The people who go to science parks to work and the people who are trying to really visualize the future are the individuals who have to break out of that mold.
Science fiction almost always seems to reflect the culture of its own day. Science fiction that truly represents a powerful fictional image is rare. Science fiction that was written by writers who were very keen on anticipating plausible scientific and societal changes is also going to be very rare. The fact that this situation exists shouldn’t surprise anyone, since even the most imaginative writers are rarely immune to falling victim to the present bias that can sometimes stifle innovation and keep society in one place.
One of the defining characteristics of innovation tomorrow is the simple fact that it is going to be unusually difficult to predict. The emerging technology of the future is going to be almost inherently unpredictable. Artificial intelligence may be possible in the near future, despite all of the disappointments involving artificial intelligence that occurred throughout the twentieth century. When artificial intelligence is thrown into the mix in science fictional worlds, it rarely manages to revolutionize society.
However, when artificial intelligence is introduced into the real world, it will manage to change society in ways that a lot of people could never possibly have anticipated. Problems that have dogged humanity for centuries may be solved by artificial intelligence in a blink of an eye. Diseases that have been dangerous for hundreds of years may be solved by artificial intelligence before people can even record new strains of them.
Artificial intelligence in science fiction typically does little more than replicate the intelligence that humans already have, which is hardly revolutionary. The artificial intelligence that is developed in the real world is ideally going to be intelligence that is so far above the human level that it will manage to solve incredibly difficult problems in a way that would have seemed miraculous beforehand.
In order to make this situation possible, researchers just have to make sure that they can create an artificial intelligence that is capable of making copies of itself and that is capable of upgrading itself. Essentially, they will be creating machines that can get over their own design hurdles. Once artificial intelligence that works like that is possible, a good portion of the rest of the innovation will follow. Researchers simply need to take some of these initial steps, and they may be on their way towards creating something that will truly change the world. Some of these researchers may get started in the modern science parks of the current world. These science parks may end up hosting some of the most important technological changes in the world.