Soon 2010 will be history, and a new year will begin. 2010 was a long year in which many interesting things happened (as every year). I will now look into my light ball, able to foresee the future, and come with some anticipations about what the new year will bring. As always is it impossible to judge the future, and how things are to become, so this is just some thoughts of what will happen, as a little new years tradition and for the enjoyment it is to read this predictions at this time next year.
2011 will be an interesting year, as every year, but it will not change the world dramatically. It will be a year in which politicians will have to defend their actions during the economic crises, and more countries will have economic problems. This will cause problems in Europe, and the Americas, but Asian countries, mainly China, will to a greater extent succeed due to the entangled economy connecting government to production. This will cause some critic due to the human right conditions in China, and arguments from the west will involve the freedom of the individual, while the arguments from China and a growing share of countries in Asia, America and Africa will focus on the ability to fulfil more primordial needs of Maslow’s pyramid. This will not result in a crisis, but a general belief that the power centres of the world is moved from the US to other parts of the world.
This will also be continued by embarrassing leaks from the cables which we saw in 2010. None of this will be fatal in world politics, but diplomatic personnel from the 90’s superpower will lose credibility and more questions will arise about the power in Washington. Especially the BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India and China) countries will try to establish themselves as more prominent players on the international arena, and this will be on the cost of the United States and the most loyal counties in Western Europe. There will be asked more questions about the politics within the European Union, and as more countries get into economic trouble, the focus will shift towards east, and this will improve the means of communication to Russia, but many will be sceptical and question the legitimacy of the rulers in Moscow.
In technology the trend of applications and devices will continue, and Apple will lead this process, at least in the mass medium, however will the early adapters look to other platforms which will emerge. The focus on mobile technology will be around, but will be replaced by a discussion on the nature of Television, which will be brought up as Video on Demand, Google TV and other technologies converging TV with the Internet will be introduced. This will cause another intellectual property debate, as many visual content providers will try to lock their customers into a network decoder relationship and focussing on propitiatory solutions instead of the open sharing. Downloading will still be important, but as more services are provided from the cloud instead through a physical media the control among the broad numbers of consumers will pay for services through subscription services which will be more popular to bundle with electronics sold in stores.
Among the regular consumers will this be the year their old phones are replaced by smart phones, and the vast numbers of users will be attracted this year. More affordable prices will be one of the most important reasons for this, as well as more useful services will be provided through mobile applications. Employers will also develop their internal systems onto portable applications, and this will trigger a debate on security. Security and privacy issues continue to be important and a major discussion between these two will find place.
Online more people will realise that Facebook poses a threat to their privacy, and a more mature audience will be more aware of what they put online. The popularity the service experienced when it first opened and got popular will dismay, and users between 20 and 35 years will spend less time, but new generation will still think it is fun and spend more. Other social websites will be launched, but not with such popularity. Twitter will be more popular among a more professional audience, and the private users will not embrace the short messages and stick to more extensive sites; Facebook. Integration will be triggered, and 2011 is also a year when APIs are shared, and JSON intercommunication is popular between services. Some topical sites for users will be launched by iconic brands to keep customers loyal and together, this will be a big pat of the political landscape where politicians will try to get more legitimacy through dialogues with their voters, and they will need this as the economic crises expands, and their earlier decisions are being questioned.
This is just some core ideas and questions I think will dominate the next year. I have not made guesses regarding natural crises, terrorism, integration and snow weather, but they will as well be prevalent topics in the year to come Oh, and I’ll give you an easy to check guess: I guess the Eurovision will be won be an Eastern European Country.
The picture is the intellectual property of Scott Rivera, it is licensed under creative commons, and found through Flickr