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So Long, and Thanks for All the Ideas
As IFA 2017 draws to a close, it is time to take stock of the ground-breaking ideas that have emanated from this year’s show.
Yesterday again, we have been inspired by some of the thought leaders present at the IFA+ Summit in the new IFA Next area in Hall 26b, with Carl Miller, Research Director and the Centre for the Analysis of Social Media, Demos, putting it clearly: “Tech is moving so quickly it is outstripping the things we have developed to civilise social life – law, morals, and norms.”
Whether people like or hate technology, use it or avoid it, they can’t escape it. And indeed, as Miller points out, a new kind of “digital power” is tearing down traditional centres of power, redistributing it in “new mysterious ways”. It is indeed becoming apparent that the influence of technology, in the form of social media, is changing the way information is distributed, and how people are influenced. An important point raised by Miller is the fact that as technology weaves its way through all our lives, we need to step into it and be a little bit more aware of what it’s doing to us… but not only that, I believe we should be more aware of what it CAN do for us. In this sense, it seems apparent that the real revolutions are happening in the fields of AI, big data, and, stemming from this, remote healthcare. That is no doubt where we are going to see veritable, tangible life-changing developments in the years to come. Of course, with this comes the peripheral – and to some extent already developed – underlying theme of wellness.
IFA is still, of course, the show where the latest and greatest developments in home and personal entertainment can be found, but never before, to this extent, has the show presented so many products and ideas that will genuinely change people’s lives for the better. As Douglas Adams once stated, “I think… I feel good about it”.