Slowtech

The phenomenon of slowtech, namely not utilizing existing advanced technologies have increasingly spread from developing countries to developed countries. This needs to be recognized as an economic problem in developed countries as well. There is indeed very much need for crisis awareness and bold futuristic leadership in managing the transition from one economic era to another.

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So called developed countries have for decades been concerned with how to industrialize so called developing countries. It turned out however that Capitalism eventually began to spread to those latter countries the way it has always had, namely by establishment of textile factories which subsequently leads to establishment of further industries as well. There was indeed a fascination in developed countries in the second part of the 20th century with the fact that developing countries did not adopt existing advanced technologies to any significant degree except by economic elites in the major cities.

While developing countries are increasingly leaving this very strange habit is it instead rather increasingly spreading to developed countries where the temporary refusal to adopt advanced existing technologies is severely limiting economic growth. There is virtually no crisis awareness with regard to how the problem of slowtech has spread from developing countries to developed countries where it similarly inhibits economic growth.

The problem of slowtech is however increasingly proliferating in developed countries and thus becoming an increasingly severe economic problem, indeed hampering economic growth. There is not even awareness that there is an ongoing transition from Capitalism to Talentism and both political and economic leaders seem clueless and seem to think that we are still somehow stuck in the 19th century.

For example, how it is possible that VR (virtual reality) is not introduced in the public sector considering the immense potential for saving vast amounts of taxpayers’ money? There is not only VR but robot technology, video communication and information technologies such as apps that could be used to vastly slash costs in the public sector, including by severely reducing the use of buildings for offices, class rooms, clinics etc. For example could hierarchies of organizations very well be supplanted by organizational apps.

What is needed therefore is first and foremost crisis awareness and awareness that we are shifting economic paradigm from one economic historical era to another as happened with the brutal transition from agricultural economy to capitalist economy. Once we understand that developed countries have an increasingly severe problem with slowtech can it also be constructively dealt with. Once we understand that the world economy is fundamentally shifting economic paradigm can we also very substantially revamp the system of education into helping make young persons and humans generally individually economically relevant in the emerging economic era of Talentism.

Once there is crisis awareness can existing technologies be harnessed to not only vastly cut costs in the public sector but also to help the private sector adapt in an orderly fashion rather than as part of an overall economically calamitous scenario. The current situation as regards slowtech in so called developed economies can be described as a reverse bubble, meaning that an economic bubble involves exaggerated expectations while a reverse bubble instead involves lack of expectations or too modest expectations.

Indeed, economic history is full of economic actors that did not want to see what was coming and therefore were swept aside by the tide of economic history. There is of course Google Inc. which is incredibly futuristic and there are other private sector companies as well with a futuristic outlook but these are really exceptions in a private sector that assumes that Capitalism will last forever which is completely preposterous considering that machines are increasingly supplanting virtually all routine tasks that do not really require emotions.

Just as the number of persons making a living from agriculture has vastly decreased in so called developed countries so will the number of professionals in mass professions in developed countries decrease to a similar degree, meaning initially perhaps about a 90% decrease and later approaching and even exceeding 99%. This is because initial introduction of existing advanced futuristic technologies (and in particular so VR) will obviously not be the end as automation will continue to decrease the number of persons in developed countries who make a living from current mass professions. Indeed, the larger the professions the more economic scale advantage for supplanting employees with advanced technologies.

Slowtech in developed countries is essentially like an iceberg. While the existing futuristic technologies such as VR are well-known, the increasingly approaching future is very much “underexpected”, meaning that as most parts of an iceberg – the calamitous change is simply not perceived at all. Indeed, economic history is one long list of economic calamities that were not visible to most people (including economic and political leaders) prior to erupting, yet some people did actually predict such individual economic calamities. Indeed ought it not be a critical task of economists to predict and prevent economic calamities?

The most important technology in this respect is VR (virtual reality) which is currently mostly developing in the game sector. However, the applications from gaming can and will no doubt be applied in other sectors of economy as well. This means that the pace of development in VR gaming will decide the course and speed of economic history in inevitably transitioning from Capitalism to Talentism.

What is really profoundly troubling however is how little (if at all) economists are concerned with identifying future economic icebergs considering that the history of Capitalism contains so many profound economic crises from the Dutch Tulip bubble and onwards. The question therefore is how the present and the already advancing shift of economic era can be better understood by corporate and political leaders alike so that the transition can be ameliorated and become much less calamitous than would otherwise be the case.

Indeed, governments and elected politicians in developed economies need to internalize that they need to start to systematically train and coach their citizens/residents of all ages for becoming individually relevant in an economy very different from the classical “business model” of Capitalism with instead only need for advanced and highly specialized professional skills requiring emotions with mass professions almost (yet not entirely) disappearing like once agricultural professions before them.

The traditional business model of Capitalism was indeed influenced by the mass economic exploitation of enslaved Africans in the Western hemisphere as tasked with growing and harvesting cotton and which was based on the principle of extracting as much labor as possible (typically using whipping) at a cost as low as possible, meaning that the enslaved African human beings were given as little food as necessary in enabling as much slave labor as possible. This is still the overall business model of Capitalism and this is rapidly becoming antiquated and redundant as what will be needed are rather consultants, entrepreneurs, futurists, geniuses, innovators and increasingly narrowly and extremely so advanced specialists.

This change is already taking place at an increasingly rapid pace, yet there is little awareness as to the precise ramifications in terms of economic history. Intellectual property laws will need to be very substantially reformed in ending the issuance of patents and limiting the timeframe of copyright (including also for technological innovation) as much as possible. The system of education will need to be very significantly revamped and so educating young persons into mass professions that will mostly but not entirely disappear is obviously not terribly helpful.

Innovation and entrepreneurship will no doubt need to be very substantially simplified and this needs to be done by development of platforms that streamline and accelerate processes of innovation and entrepreneurship. Permanent jobs are likely to increasingly disappear as virtually all routine functions will be taken over by advanced technologies. The legal system needs comprehensive reform so as to facilitate and indeed accelerate innovation and entrepreneurship.

The current web domain system also needs to be completely reformed so that every physical person and every legal person (corporation etc.) will only have one domain each with any number of words with at least one dot in between. This means that top level domains need to be abolished altogether. Rather, for example General Electrics would probably have the domain general.electrics rather than the current ge.com. This is so as finding a .com domain for new startups is becoming an increasingly severe obstacle to innovative global entrepreneurship as .com domains have been mass registered by companies for the purpose of selling the right to use those domains at a high price, something which is unduly limiting name choices for startups with their limited finances. Indeed, finding a good domain and thus a name for a new company has become the most difficult element in innovative entrepreneurship.

Both private and public sector leaders need to internalize that slowtech has spread from developing countries to developed countries and that this has become a very real – albeit no doubt temporary – economic problem of mass psychology in developed countries as well. As slowtech involves reverse bubbles need there be increasing crisis awareness that indeed requires substantial futuristic leadership in both private and public sectors.