Digital Versus Human

This is too good not to use in some way.

I was watching Channel 4 news last night (I almost never do) and there was an interesting piece on the Innocence Project in the USA, specifically a piece about Ricky Jackson, now 59 years old, who spent the last 39 years of his life in prison for a 1975 murder that he and two of his friends didn’t commit.

Asked by the TV reporter what had changed since he was locked up he replied: “Technology… I think that’s the biggest thing that I’ve had to adapt to, the way people relate to each other now…. I’m not saying that I came from a perfect world in 1975, but people were more in touch with each other…. it’s about a text now.”

Digital v Human

I’ve decided that for the next few months this blog is going to be about the development of my next book, Digital v Human (with some exceptions). First I’ll start by adding a few things I’ve deleted. The appendix below seemed like a good idea when the book was a straightforward sequel to Future Files, but now less so. Hopefully, it will find a use in scenario planning and such like.

Appendix 1: Assessment of probabilities*

If you want to capture peoples’ attention about the future it’s useful to use words like “will” and “won’t.” People like people that project confidence and say things with absolute certainty. Avoiding detail, especially specific dates, works extremely well too. However, if there is one thing that we can say about the future with absolute certainty, it is surely that it’s uncertain. Therefore, logically, there must always be more than one possibility, outcome or future.

To this end I have tried to be careful with my language. Certain words used throughout this book are associated with broad levels of probability. This isn’t intended to be scientific, but it has been thought through and is meant to alert both readers and myself to any definitive statements. Probabilities are based upon widespread occurrence, acceptance or rejection by the year 2050, which hopefully creates a small degree of accountability.

Description Range of probability
Will/won’t Greater than 90%
Likely/probable/should 60-90%
May/might/could/possible 20-60%
Unlikely/improbable Less than 20%
Impossible/never Less than 5%

* With due acknowledgment to the Ministry of Defence, DCDC.