The Google+ musings of

Robert Scoble

Rackspace's Futurist helps small teams have a huge impact with cloud computing technology.

Welcome to the freaky future

April 27, 2012 73 comments 143 shares 274 plus ones
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Here's the speech I gave at +The Next Web conference yesterday. I set up a world of 2030 when we have our Google eye monitors (er, +Project Glass) and a self-driving car.

What's going to be the big problem in this new world? Not privacy.


Thanks to +Matteo Lai, who showed off his device that I was wearing (he was monitoring my emotions while on stage). It is a freaky future indeed!


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kamran ali May 06, 2012

hi dear how are you?

Silvia Gonzalez May 02, 2012

the house 89462539236235 he ma sekm

Jon Perry May 01, 2012

+Robert Scoble A blog post I wrote that interfaces with your addiction thesis:

jhon fredy Gutierrez April 30, 2012

muy buena

Robert Scoble April 30, 2012

She's OK with it as long as they aren't on. LOL.

PJ Ammidon April 30, 2012

Really fantastic talk +Robert Scoble ! But... "I'm aiming 2 video cameras at my bed" ... can't help but wonder how Mrs.+Robert Scoble feels about that! LOL

Michael Voshell April 30, 2012

+Dan Verley I said it because if you watch his other interviews from his YouTube channel and you look at his speech at TNW and compare it to other presenters speaking in his same field the level of confidence and fluidity that they speak with is practically night and day.

As I stated before I love his topics and I love his passion for these things that he covers but at the same time if he is going to take on this role seriously of being a public speaker or to be doing these tech interviews he needs to hone his skill just like any other.

If he were to work on his public speaking skills he would benefit from less anxiety which in turn would make him more confident which in turn would make the topic he is speaking on even MORE powerful and and people would see them for their potential.

These are the reasons I encourage +Robert Scoble to take speaking classes. I want to see his message have more power and I want to see him be more successful as a public speaker. I understand that us "nerds/geeks" are naturally introverts generally but that is all the more reason why a well done public speech has so much more power.

Andrew Nino April 30, 2012

I've been wanting to watch this all day. This video was very interesting and definitely worth the wait.

Nick Carter April 29, 2012

I only wish to be there in 2030 and see all the things that you things that are think will be there. HOPE SO!

Dan Verley April 29, 2012

+Michael Voshell I'm not sure why you felt the need to say that. It was very rude. I personally saw nothing wrong with his speaking style.

Michael Voshell April 29, 2012

Again. Love your topics. Love your interviews. Fascinating stuff. But if you are going to continue to be doing stuff like this..... PLEASE FOR THE LOVE OF SANITY, TAKE A PUBLIC SPEAKING CLASS.

Colin Bendell April 29, 2012

Just think of the electricity requirements to collect all that personal information, curate it, and leverage that personal data in comprehensive ways.

Lebogang Kagiso Kgaladi April 28, 2012

While all of these is freaky, doesn't all of this already exist?
I mean 2030? You even say that this stuff is already here.

mick tulk April 28, 2012

So a machine helps you to be a better human? ( in your own words , and you thought it was pretty cool ! ) Calls for a little thought dont you think.

Itay Adam April 28, 2012

Robert can you write down the list of the services you've talked about?

Dan Verley April 28, 2012

+Robert Scoble That poor Frenchman was terrified.

Dan Verley April 28, 2012

+Robert Scoble The information about firebase is interesting. Where do you find this stuff. Is it just constant research or do people contact you with this info?

Chris Tabor April 28, 2012

I agree it will become an addiction, because our brains are wired to accept these positive feedback loops and then modify our behavior accordingly. It's not longer a means to an end (a tool) but rather another way to define ourselves. The only solution (logical conclusion) is that we take this tech, data and everything else, and embed it into our very essence (post-humanism). The next problem is solving the fragility of this tech and making it follow the same rules of genetics, where it can mutate, replicate and survive on it's own. If we forgot how we built the system, we are likely f&!*#_!

Bailey Isawesome April 27, 2012


Buck Williams April 27, 2012

This pegged my freak meter.

Bailey Isawesome April 27, 2012


Gabe Reptar April 27, 2012

whoa!!!!!!!!!!!! :)

Darrell Coble April 27, 2012

This is the first time I have actually watched one of your presentations. When I saw the time on the video, I thought I wasn't going to watch the whole thing. Next thing I know, the presentation was over and I have a bunch of new apps on my phone.

Jessica Lopez April 27, 2012

the future is pretty freaky...

Steven Bowser April 27, 2012

I think I like all this technology, only as long as I can turn it off if I want to. I can't help feeling like it would overwhelm me and make me long to be a hermit.

mick tulk April 27, 2012

Beware coalition proposals to change status of marriage without a mandate. Your father will no longer be your father but will be Progenitor A

V-ra V-ra April 27, 2012

yez, that is the stuff that we are craving for the future! #habit #customization #automatization

Jake Gasaway April 27, 2012

the over the freaky line is going to be when we transition from saying it to him/ her when we refer to our devices. I think there is this other device that i take to work with me every morning, knows how to drive, know which is my favorite gas station, etc. its called my BRAIN.

Cory Dodt April 27, 2012

Thank goodness addiction isn't a problem in 2012.

Kyle Songer April 27, 2012

This is very similar to the future I foresee or think about daily.

Todd Christensen April 27, 2012

I have been very interested in the 'wearable' technologies since I saw a very early prototype 5 years ago. They are cool and they are coming. The problem with the 'data mining' piece referenced in the talk (besides the obvious privacy issue) is that the end goal is to identify a pattern and then try to predict things based on those patterns. A lot of people are very routine, comfortable, predictable, and are unfamiliar with change. A lot of people, however, also aren't. I make it a point to routinely break habits, cycles, and to try new things and new places. Sometimes I am disappointed, sometimes I am not, but my behavior is anything but predictable. If the system relies on my habits to function properly, it is going to drive me to stay stuck in those same habits and routines to 'oblige the system'. It just seems like a way to "sell" the quasi-benefits of 'data mining'...

Denise Stovall April 27, 2012

Yes. So true I always have my phone with me. Not surprised that my smart phone is smarter than me.

Shon Doe April 27, 2012

si sii you puta gusta arse

yazmin ferreyra April 27, 2012


Shon Doe April 27, 2012

fuck dat racism some where else or else

Jack Seamands April 27, 2012

wow guys be qiet

My Tech Solution Support April 27, 2012

Dude, this shit sucks, I dont even know how I am on this dumb "Google Circle Jerk"

Its called, pick up the phone and call someone. Its nice to have friends online, but everyone that I know that has FadBook, only knows really, like 3 of there 500 "friends" - get a life

My Tech Solution Support April 27, 2012

"Shut the fuck up fat man" - Pulp Fiction

Phillip Maddick April 27, 2012

+Robert Appleby - Minority Report stuff!

yazmin ferreyra April 27, 2012


Kanahou Alana April 27, 2012

like that isnt the problem already!! Addictipn is deadly

Harish G April 27, 2012

freaky deaky !!!

Phillip Maddick April 27, 2012

Great Apps!!! When does Karma reach the UK?

Maria Piva April 27, 2012

Great lecture!!!

Darth Axel April 27, 2012


Zeynep Zencir April 27, 2012


Robert Appleby April 27, 2012

Actually gave this PlaceMe app a shot a few weeks back and it's freaky. Now the only problem is that GPS is not that accurate at some areas so it's detecting wrong positions at times but it learns which locations you go to, it tells you when and how often you've been there, too. Now if position data is more precise and the hardware in use has many more features I can imagine how this can be used to influence your life and the content shown to you. Just imagine shopping windows become flat screens some day and as soon as you pass them they show you goods you've bought or are interested in. This is becoming very scary. It could make you cahnge your opinion on subjects by showing you the content in a certain way. Lets see where this will take us. I'm excited but also scared.

Harshitha L April 27, 2012

wtf ??????????????

Bailey Isawesome April 27, 2012

this stuff is boring

William Toll April 27, 2012

Devices, Sensors, Data and Analytics - the future is awesome as the world's hyper-innovators, awesome developers and design leaders genuinely improve our lives and humanity in general. Great talk Robert.

Simon Allen April 27, 2012

Robert, YOU THE MAN!

Jim Bolduc Sr April 27, 2012

Empatic sounds interesting- I'd like to see the self driving car someday!

Norm Marquardson April 27, 2012

The tech of all this is interesting, but the real value of these changes seems very small for the user and high for the data aggregators. Not having to set my alarm clock, for example, saves me nothing.

zoo vankova April 27, 2012

spot on. great speech!

Roger Troutt April 27, 2012

Great presentation +Robert Scoble !

Bailey Isawesome April 27, 2012

I think wen it is the futre aliens will own the planet.

Michael Sharp April 27, 2012

+Robert Scoble - Great points into Addiction and Privacy. As you state, different cultures have varying levels of privacy concerns and fear of State intrusion.

For any such services to have a 'Global' appeal, they will need to have a 'Local' outlook and allow users to turn on and off any particular function they desire.

If services employ a take it or leave approach, they are unlikely to succeed outside of their National boundaries.

A well travelled man like yourself will understand, that even in Europe, we have different values to USA Citizens.

Jason Bayton April 27, 2012

+Robert Scoble this is the first time I've been able to sit and watch a talk this long without getting bored in a while. Well done :)

Dan lodhi April 27, 2012


Bogdan A. Sima April 27, 2012

Robert your speech was great and the technology is really on a freaky road. I have learned two things - simple ones - and I am asking myself if s it so good to share all the personal info with the world. The two things that I have mentioned are:
1. It is 1000 times harder to do a small good thing to someone, than to do a great bad thing to many. - Anonimus
2. Nobel invented the dynamite to help people build bridges in the mountains and make roads. Some are using it to kill people.
I think that all this technology will be like in Star Trek if the privacy of the personal data can be turned on and off by the owner at will. I think, also that the security of this data is critical from the point of view of to whom I share my private life – another on and off option.
I wish to live the day when I will tell SIRI (or Amanda, or Helga, or John – whatever the personal computer’s name will be) to make me the coffee, to play music and to share my personal life with a new friend, IF I WANT to do that.

David Dawneway April 27, 2012

Wowowowow. Google- as home of not so well concealed product placement. next we will hear rave reviews for implanted chips that help Big Brother keep us safe from ourselves.

Jacques Cloutier April 27, 2012

Interesting speech Robert! Freaky line is easily crossed because of our fundamental fear of the unknown...but not to worry, our personally calibrated implanted/drug release Pak will ease our pains and anxieties, help us feel good, compensate for hangovers, modulate our moods, numb our heartaches, boost our attention spans, improve our learning curves, prevent depression, inject adrenalin into our body even before we need it...Addictive, you bet. Try the latest App designed to rate your addiction level, its called AddApp...get it?

Darci Shaver April 27, 2012

Wow, super jazzed about Empatica! This app can fit in so nicely with what tethr wants to do to help keep human connection front and center during crisis communications. Thank you for covering this, Robert!!

Mike Slough April 27, 2012


Jojo Scoble April 27, 2012

Great talk.
I love the new techonologies but what I get concerned about it the automation of human life! What happens when we don't get connected and don't know in an instant what the weather is like or where something is?
Are we even going to be able to have a decent relationship with anyone in reality or are we going to get to know people through computers, coz I can tell you know that getting to know someone over the internet and in person isn't always compatible.
I think a lot of investment needs to be made in psychology research to cover what we dont' know about how the human condition changes in relation to the 'sensor-built world'; because we have become so insular and segregated ( arguably) - how can we measure intelligence of other people in order to interact with them? I would be interested to see how this is arch of science is developed. We are being sold all of these technologies as individuals within a larger component. I will look forward to us coming together in some way. +Andrea Kuszewski, human behaviour is going to change in response to this perhaps too fast for everyone to catch up. People are still worried about 'information'-sharing so is there a choice about not being involved. I don't think so.
Also, a prediction is that people won't want to use more technologies because of energy-saving drives. However, I believe that conductors have improved so much that we won't have to worry about this too much but people will still need to be conscientious and encouraged not to use too much of certain energies.
You gave me a lot to think about. Thanks +Robert Scoble
BTW "fuck it ship it" what's that about? (sticker on your laptop)

Hakan SÖNMEZ April 27, 2012

Eklendi çok sunum aksanı çok kaliteli

Stuart Grimshaw April 27, 2012

The thing that concerns me about all this data gathering is not what is possible with it, it's more about who has access to it, and more importantly, who doesn't.

I don't really mind people collecting data about me, as long as I have the same access to it as they do (and that goes all the way from the smallest startup to the largest government agency)

Steve McKee April 27, 2012

Inappropriate (for mass public viewing) sticker choice on the laptop lid.......I almost choked on my prudishness :)

jesse sago April 27, 2012

Good presentation Robert, i really enjoyed your speculations.

James Russell April 27, 2012

Great speech, Robert. You can tell your were terrified in the beginning but you did a fantastic job despite that. It just makes you human. Thank you for helping me envision the future dependence on technology; you really brought home to me how we are increasingly relying on it.

People say that if the Internet was "broken" today that the world would stand still; can you imagine the same thing then? We couldn't even sleep properly because our alarm clocks would suddenly be "stupid" again! Our toasters won't know how long to toast our bread and we'll burn it! Our cars won't be able to drive us to work and we may have to "relearn" how to drive!

You also bring to mind accessibility; what good would Google Glasses be to a blind person? Certainly they'll have to have an audio version. Or, will we be able to have those glasses somehow "hook into" the brain to create vision? Powerful stuff, Robert. Powerful.

Taylor O'Neal April 27, 2012

Thanks for the talk yesterday, was a great more optimistic balance to the morning at TNW!

Tung Ten Yong April 27, 2012

I wonder if you've heard of Jobs' comment on this kind of device?

Gavin Wilkinson April 27, 2012

People's minds will take longer to change. Only one person needs to be questioned on the veracity of their weekend to XYZ when someone wearing glasses pipes up with "they also visited their ex's mother-in-law".

Also, is it possible that, white-lies will not be worth the hassle, creating a seemingly more honest environment, taking people off guard and allowing the lies worth the effort of hiding to go on?

Vlad Markov April 27, 2012

+Robert Scoble honestly for +Rackspace Hosting, probably, you are the best investment ever.

Max Minzer April 27, 2012

More like 2020...

Andreas Rades April 27, 2012

+Robert Scoble , not only the integration of systems, but also safeguards against negative impacts or crime is a major challenge

Robert Scoble April 27, 2012

+Ronen Mendezitsky yeah, that would be cool.

Ronen Mendezitsky April 27, 2012

Watching this I can't stop myself from asking why isn't it possible to make comments on certain parts of this video. You talk about so many things and I have a comment on a few of them. If I could comment on certain parts of this video, I think it'll be far more productive and interesting.

Tony Gu April 27, 2012

Imagine a world where we will be able to access to so much personal information, which will eventually make our communication more effective and transparent.

Robert Scoble April 27, 2012

+Tung Ten Yong how does the system all work? Well, that's what still needs to be built, but a lot of it already works today.

Robert Scoble April 27, 2012

Thanks to +Rackspace Hosting for empowering me to study all these new startups. I can't wait to share the video with the Firebase team that we shot recently.

Also, interesting that no one has commented on my sticker choice on my Mac. :-)

Tung Ten Yong April 27, 2012

Thanks for the nice speech..but I'm still baffled, how does it really work?

Rodolphe D'Inca April 27, 2012

what is a bit frightening is that we feel the great potential behind htese gadgets, sensors but we cannot explicitely define this potential: what kind of application can be developed? How can we use the tremendous flow of data that will be poured out of these captors. There are some dieas, scifi books have given some hints and they are not always enjoying. It can and it will probably be something big.

Robert Scoble April 27, 2012

+Andreas Rades thanks! It was my best speech to date so far.

Robert Scoble April 27, 2012

+Tung Ten Yong sorry, you're wrong. I've already seen wearable systems. +Nicolas Charbonnier was wearing one at CES this year (by the way, +Sergey Brin came up to him while I was standing there and started asking questions about the system he was wearing).

Andreas Rades April 27, 2012

very good lecture, Robert

Tung Ten Yong April 27, 2012

I don't think google glass is possible.
The glass is so near to your eye that its pixel density has to be at least 10 times that of iPhone's retina display, in order for the icons not to seen as pixelated..and we don't have such glass technology yet.

Robert Quick April 27, 2012

Seriously... I think you should replace the Energizer rabbit as the new spokesman.

Michael C April 27, 2012

Nice one +Robert Scoble :-)

Ingo Becker April 27, 2012

Still addicted, but less since your keynote...