Our Childhood Sci-Fictions Are Turning into Realities, Says Entrepreneur and Author Atul Jalan

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Time to Read: 3 minutes

There is no doubt that technology has become the epicenter of our lives. So far, we were occupied contemplating what technology would do to our jobs and businesses. However, the serial entrepreneur and author, Atul Jalan takes a step ahead in his book Where Will Man Take Us? The Bold Story of the Man Technology is Creating.

A futurist and the founder and CEO of Manthan Systems, an AI led product company based in Bengaluru, takes a peek into how different dimensions of our existence are going to transform as we are going to imbibe more of technology. One just needs to name the dimension and its mention can be found in his book. Born in a Hindu household and spending his early childhood listening to mythologies, Atul has always been an intrigued child who eventually grew up consuming a lot on technology. He believes what was seen as science fiction twenty years back has taken a form of reality in today’s time.

With technologies like Artificial Intelligence, nanotechnology, quantum computing and genetics, human civilization is at the cusp of changes and evolution. From nature to technology, we can highlight the shift in the entire edifice of evolution. As our tech-enthusiast author Jalan says, our evolution has now become “artificially engineered” and the rate of evolution is going to be rapid and profound.

Technology and Matchmaking- Romantic or Unromantic?
As we mentioned above, technology is going to affect every facet of our life and yes, match making is one of them. We have already entered the era of online dating and online matchmaking but if it leaves romance romantic or not is a concern. We hail from the lineage where our “perfect one” has mostly been chosen by our families (since family compatibility has been considered more important than the couple). The favorite idea of love has been when we bump into someone “accidentally” and fall in love at the first sight. But what about compatibility? It is here that technology is going to play its part. There are various apps which have already been created in terms of understanding the compatibility of the person you are thinking of the future with. For instance, sociometer which could help you analyze the impact of your behavior on your partner and vice versa or the app to evaluate the body language of the person you are trying to establish compatibility with. While it may appear unromantic to some or alter the notions of matchmaking, online matchmaking based on algorithms are only going to improve the results leading to better marriages and happier couples, as the author believes.

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What Will Happen to Jobs?
Since the inception of the technologies like AI-ML, robotics and automation, the one debate that has created a lot of buzz is if AI is going to kill the jobs and employment.Well, the question has two sides to it, as per Atul’s book. Owing to the secular nature of AI, all the jobs are going to be impacted. As per an estimation by Kevin Kelly, 65 percent of existing jobs will not exist in next 10-15 years. However, Jalan believes that millions of new jobs will be created as automation always increases the demand for people in roles machine cannot fulfil. He substantiates this by saying that the industrial revolution of the nineteenth century redefined jobs rather than destroying them. Hence, one should not worry about the change and be optimistic (even though as a human being, it is only natural to be afraid of the change).

Will Technology Replace Gods?
Given how profound yet ambiguous religion has always been, not many have touched the aspects related to god in this newly “artificially engineered” society. There could be questions on the existence of religion and god as the technology is going to rule. The author opines that religion is not going to die. However, dataism is going to lead. Dataism is likely to fill the gaps that religions of the past have not been able to. With dataism and algorithms, it is more likely to create happier situations for human beings. In a nutshell, the author has a belief that technology will pave way for new gods who will be part of us with access to biotechnology  and algorithm instead of resting in the scriptures and skies.
These were just few limbs that we touched upon. The book has bold yet realistic perspectives on various other fronts, provoking and nudging the established theories on lot new things. The future (of technology) is ambiguous but all we can do it- be optimistic and hope for the best, like our futurist author does.

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Our Childhood Sci-Fictions Are Turning into Realities, Says Entrepreneur and Author Atul Jalan

by Sameer Dhanrajani Time to Read: 3 min
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