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What you don’t know won’t hurt you

It’s not ‘what you know,’ but rather ‘asking the right questions’ that is most important
Dateline: 27 November 2030

In previous decades and centuries, knowledge was power, and possessing the right knowledge was the key to success, wealth and ultimately, power. That’s no longer the case.

Now we live in an age where the internet of everything is sensing and monitoring every aspect of our lives and physical world. With over a 100 billion networked machine ‘eyes’ – cameras, LIDAR scanners, and more – attached to satellites, drones, driverless cars, and strategically placed in offices, factories and streets, watching, listening and measuring everything worth measuring, knowledge is worthless, and available to anyone.

Like GPS, LIDAR has dematerialized and disappeared into our phones and smart glasses, scanning and measuring our world as it evolves. They’re all part of a global matrix of smart devices and sensors that allow us to know everything, all the time. Driven by the convergence of earth and space-based sensors, massive data and wireless networks, and artificial intelligence, we’re developing the ability to know anything, on demand.

As long as we know how to ask the right questions. With so much data and knowledge available, aggregated and assimilated by our AI assistants, the critical skill lies in the quality of our queries, and the ability to have a mind open to new information. And new business models.

As Mark Twain so famously observed: “What gets us into trouble is not what we don’t know. It’s what we know for sure, that just ain’t so.” For modern scientific times, Richard Feynman was more accurate when he said: “I’d rather have questions that can’t be answered, than answers that can’t be questioned!”

What you don’t know won’t hurt you. What you think you know, for sure, might.

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Warning: Hazardous Thinking at Work

Despite appearances to the contrary, Futureworld cannot and does not predict the future. Our Mindbullets scenarios are fictitious and designed purely to explore possible futures, challenge and stimulate strategic thinking. Use these at your own risk. Any reference to actual people, entities or events is entirely allegorical. Copyright Futureworld International Limited. Reproduction or distribution permitted only with recognition of Copyright and the inclusion of this disclaimer. © Public domain image.

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