By Iskander HFC (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

SPECIAL GUEST: Zack Kanter. The autonomous car. Self-driving car. Robot car. This technology has the potential to transform our society. We're joined this episode by car guy, entrepreneur and futurist Zack Kanter, to once again look at the way that society is going to be reshaped as we undergo exponential change. Oh, and we also talk about the future itself, and a bit on the future of virtual reality too. Recorded 8/26/2015.

 

You can download the episode here, or an even higher quality copy here...

 

Mike & Matt's Recommended Reading:

ZackKanter.com

Zack on Twitter

Zack's auto parts company, Proforged

More coming soon...

 

Transcript:

Alpha: Welcome to another episode of Robot Overlordz, episode #203. On the show we take a look at how society is changing, everything from pop culture reviews to political commentary, technology trends to social norms, all in about thirty minutes or less, every Tuesday and Thursday.

Mike Johnston: Greetings cyborgs, robots, and natural humans. I’m Mike Johnston.

Matt Bolton: And I’m Matt Bolton.

MJ: And joining us on this episode is Zack Kanter. Zack, thanks for joining us.

Zack Kanter: Yeah, thanks for having me, guys.

MJ: So, our standard question that we typically ask people is, for people that are not familiar with them, could you kind of give a little bit about your background and what you do?

ZK: Sure. My name’s Zack Kanter obviously, and I write a blog at ZackKanter.com, where I talk about a number of things ranging issues of anything from relationships to autonomous cars, which is I guess a pretty wide berth there. But my professional background is I own an auto parts company, I manufacture 2,300 different auto parts in Taiwan and China and distribute them in the US under my brand name. And that’s more or less me in a nutshell.

MJ: And you also have a TEDx talk with a title I love, actually: “Falling in Love with the Future.”

ZK: That’s right, yeah. I did a TEDx talk in April of this year and it’s basically about the cognitive biases that prevent us from accurately predicting the future.

MJ: So I noticed in your bio you sort of describe yourself as a futurist. How did you get interested in the future, and have you done any official training as a futurist or is it more of an interest thing for you?

ZK: Uh, does Reddit count?

MB: [laughs]

MJ: [laughs]

ZK: I have no official training as a futurist. Obviously I’ve heard of and looked at things like Singularity University and what not, where I guess you could maybe even get a degree in futurology. But no, I suppose I’m more of an amateur futurist, a “self-trained futurist,” if you will. And the way I got into it really was I suppose that you just get used to giving a number of rants enough times about things that you’re thinking about and then at some point somebody says, “Hey, I guess you’re a futurist!” And then I said, “I guess I’m a futurist, yeah. It makes sense.” So, you go out and google it ten years ago and figure out what that means. But it’s something that I end up talking about a lot because I’m very much interested in the future, very much optimistic about the future, and I think that we’re on the cusp of some very, very exciting things happening that are going to make everything that’s happened up to this point really pale in comparison.

MJ: Yeah. Well, and I think we would agree with that.

ZK: Yeah, by the title of your podcast, I think that we’re probably in agreement on a lot of similar things. We hope that it’s a benevolent overlord that comes over us, but the robots are certainly coming.

MJ: Yeah. So, what do you think most people miss when they think about the future? I noticed on your blog you’ve written a lot about the way people underestimate how fast things change, and you used the example in I think one of your pieces about cell phones, which I love, because I’m a huge fan—well, I’ve gotten very interested in telecommunications as an industry; I used to work for AT&T, actually. But what do you think most people miss when they think about the future?

ZK: I think it’s a Neil Armstrong quote, he said that “most people tend to overestimate what’s going to happen in the next 12 months and underestimate what’s going to happen in the next 10 years.” I think that sums it up pretty nicely. People tend to look at the data that they have in front of them and project that data out, and they look at it, and the problem is—I’m sure you guys have talked many times on the show before about the difference between linear and exponential growth—the problem is that exponential growth at the beginning looks like linear growth, because when you zoom in on an exponential curve, it looks the same as a line. And so I think most people say, “Oh yeah, I can look back and connect these three dots and these three dots, sort of form this line, and then in 10 years it’s going to be a modest increase, maybe a little bit more,” which is how—I actually think it was McKinsey, who has a great reputation, missed hugely in that cell phone study for AT&T, where they said, and forgive me, this is off the top of my head, but I think they said they thought the total market for cell phones was somewhere in the neighborhood of 100,000 units and AT&T ended up having to invest very, very heavily at a huge cost later on because of that missed forecast.

MJ: Well, and they still seem to have that problem as a company. [laughs] So, you’ve written a lot about autonomous cars and that’s one of Matt’s and my favorite subjects to talk about, and how transformative that’s going to be. The piece on your blog that I’m thinking of specifically, you talked a lot about Uber and autonomous cars and how that’s going to change jobs and urban architecture. How close do you think we really are to that? I mean, you see these stories, Matt and I have been watching the Google car quite a bit, where they seem to do a lot of testing in California. We’re both in the midwest, and the first thing that occurs to me is how are these things going to deal with winter and weather? How fast do you think this transformation is going to happen?

ZK: When you talk about winter, the first thing that comes to mind is that people aren’t particularly good at driving in the winter; the number of accidents that goes up in the winter is large. But anyways, to go back to your question, how quickly will the adoption happen? I think this is where, talking about how people miss, I think this is where most people miss, and it’s because people think, “Okay, the technology needs to come out and then consumers need to get comfortable with it, and then it’s going to take some time and maybe the early adopters will buy an autonomous car, and then eventually that will trickle down to the people who are less risk-friendly and 20-30 years from now we will have a bunch of autonomous cars.” I don’t really think that that’s an accurate view, and I think that the reason is because I think that the vast majority of autonomous cars are going to be purchased by fleets. So, we can talk about temperate climates first, where you don’t have to worry about winter, somewhere like San Francisco would be a great example. So, let’s say in 2020 the fully autonomous cars start coming out, and who that’s going to be is either going to be Google—definitely Google is going to be one of them—perhaps Tesla, perhaps Apple, see who else can catch up. And Uber themselves really raided Carnegie Mellon’s autonomous car department and are now developing vehicles of their own. What we’re looking at is 2020 for the cars starting to become available, and the scale that it’s going to take in order to make a significant impact on a city is not that much. You look at New York City, has what is it, 13,000 taxi medallions? And up until Uber came around, that was sufficient for New York City. Obviously there were some constraints on that and they weren’t really doing that great of a job of servicing the demand that there was. But there’s 13,000 medallions. So let’s say in 2021 someone like Uber can purchase 10,000 autonomous cars, whether it’s a car of their own design or they’re buying a car from Google. That makes a pretty big dent. I mean, with 10,000, 13,000, 15,000 cars, which is a tremendously small number in terms of the scale of production of vehicles, that would replace every taxicab in Manhattan.

MB: I would think too that some of the taxicab companies are going to start buying their own, just to replace drivers and things too. I mean, I don’t think they’ll sit around and just wait for this thing to unfold, either.

ZK: Maybe, if there’s any taxicab companies left by 2021. You know, it’s really an interesting question as far as who the winners and the losers are going to be. There’s some talk of, “Oh, so people are going to buy autonomous cars and then when they’re at work they’ll rent those autonomous cars out,” an AirBnB-type model. I don’t really buy that. I think that that’s just a very complex problem. What happens if somebody damages your car, and you’ve rented it out to 15 people during that day, and somebody has spilled coffee all over the seat? It’s tough to handle that stuff. I think it’s more likely that we’re going to see someone like Hertz, or…GE Capital, someone who has an ability to—an expertise in maintaining huge fleets of vehicles and has the balance sheet to support it, and has expertise in maintaining the vehicles and operating them at the lowest cost. I think people like that are going to be the first ones to line up. Now, it’s possible that taxicab companies are going to be part of those, but I think that because there’s going to be a much larger demand for purchasing autonomous cars than there are going to be supply of autonomous cars—I mean, even by 2020 Tesla is only going to be able to produce 500,000 vehicles a year; we’re constrained by the number of lithium ion batteries that we’re going to be able to make. So, when it comes to that, I think that the larger companies, like someone like a Hertz or an Uber or whoever it might be that is going to be operating these vehicles, they’re going to purchase all of the available supply and the small companies, like the small taxi operators, are probably not going to really have a spot in the line.

MB: Do you think the other next autonomous vehicle will be long road trucks? To me, that would be the next logical step. I mean, truck drivers make a lot of money. You know, once you’re out on the highway, there’s not a lot of turns and curves, and if you’re going cross-country, to me that would seem like the logical place to go with it after that.

ZK: Oh yeah. Or maybe even before. And I think the technology will probably be ready before the regulation is in place. But the way I could foresee the tractor trailer 18-wheeler situation working is—you know, the last mile problem is always tough. We’ve all been sitting on a suburban street somewhere when an 18-wheeler is backing up across 6 lanes of traffic and cutting the wheel just barely and not hitting that “no parking” sign in order to get backed up to this loading dock. And for an autonomous vehicle to be able to handle that, we’re a ways off. Where I could see this going is large trucking operators building autonomous switching depots by the arteries of major highways. So, let’s say on the east coast, somewhere in New Jersey, there’s a terminal where human-driven tractor trailers come in, drop off their load, and then it’s switched onto an autonomous “sled,” if you will, basically like a skateboard that has a container on it, a shipping container, and then that drives the long haul all the way across the country.

MB: Yeah, no, I agree with you. I think that’s probably—you’ll get those long haul trucks that’ll just go from one shipping depot to the next and there’ll probably be a guy there who either switches the truck portion, either that or has the ability to drive it and do the backing in and loading and everything. To me, that would make sense until it’s perfected. But if you can have an autonomous vehicle drive, say, from Chicago to California and you don’t have to stop and go to the bathroom and get something to eat and sleep and all those things, to me that would just be the logical next move for that.

ZK: Oh yeah. I mean, the cost is huge, because right now you could either have one driver driving a trailer but they’re constrained in terms of the number of hours they can drive because of the regulatory concerns. Or you could have two drivers but then you’re basically paying one extra person to sit there while the other person drives. So, the other problem is there’s something like 98% or 99% turnover in employment in that market just because it’s, you know, not for most people, not a very long-term job. So, they have a big problem getting enough people to even do it, so I think that that’s really great for the picking. 

MB: Yeah. The other interesting fact, and I don’t know how much this has to do with anything, but I heard this statistic: the average life expectancy of a truck driver is like 56-years-old, which is obviously way, way shorter. But, I mean, if you think about it, you’re talking about people who are literally sitting—I shouldn’t say anything, because I sit at a desk all day—but they’re sitting all day long and then eating whatever the food that they eat. But yeah, sorry, that was just my interesting tidbit. [laughs] The other thing, and Mike and I have talked a lot about this, is the laws that are going to have to change. I’m assuming that there’s probably going to be a lot of towns and even cities and things, and states, that don’t want autonomous vehicles just because of the revenue loss without speeding tickets, without DUIs, without all these things. Do you think that’s going to be a basically a slowdown in getting all these things going?

ZK: Well, do you want me to talk about what I want to happen or what I think will happen, or what I think should happen?

MB: Well, more “should,” because I’d like it to happen.

ZK: Yeah, whenever you talk about this stuff, there’s the buckets that it goes into, which is how it probably will play out, how you want it to play out, and then maybe, from a more objective standpoint, how it should play out. In a perfect world, we would see a huge reduction in revenue, because city and municipality revenue in terms of all of the things you mentioned—speeding tickets, parking tickets, all these different things, even sales tax from vehicles being purchased, and then the size of the government would shrink considerably, and when the size of the government shrinks, our civil liberties go up. It’s probably not going to happen that way, though. The way it’s probably going to happen is that it’s going to take a long time, but the hope is that—I think a pretty decent way of looking at this, a pretty decent framework for it is looking at the legalization of pot nationwide. Right now, I live in Colorado and they legalized pot maybe a year and a half, two years ago. The hope is that, there used to be tens and tens of thousands of arrests per year and now there’s no arrests per year, practically. And, you know, I’m just peeking out my window just to make sure, but there’s no carnage, people running around in the street murdering each other, and the zombie apocalypse.

MB: [laughs]

ZK: And the hope is that other states are going to look at this after a year or two and say, “Okay, look, there’s really no substantial fallout towards doing this, and there’s actually some pretty big advantages.” And so I hope that, in terms of the autonomous cars thing as well, there’s always one state that is willing to cross that line first, and I think that will probably be California or maybe Nevada. Sure, there’s going to be a reduction in revenue, but there’s also going to be huge increases in productivity because of improvements in traffic and all sorts of unforeseen positive consequences that it’s difficult to predict from today. I just think that hopefully the other states fall in line pretty quickly.

MB: I agree with you.

ZK: I’m curious, I don’t know what the political leanings or what you guys have discussed on the show before, but I’m curious what you guys think as far as the regulatory stuff, because this is, again, I could speak from an ideological standpoint of what I think should happen, but I’m probably not the best person to predict it.

MJ: I think we’re probably fairly in line with you on that, Zack. To me, it seems like we, as a society, need to start having these conversations now and get out ahead of it, because otherwise, I mean in thinking about the way society changes, the actual technology is very much exponential, but a lot of our social changes tend to stay more linear because everybody is used to the way it is. I guess I’m curious what you would say to the skeptics out there who’d be like, “Well, you know, America is a car culture and you’re not going to pry my car out of my—only out of my cold dead hands” kind of attitude that some people might have, of, “Well, I like to drive.” And yet, I know I talk to a lot of people about autonomous cars and it seems like an awful lot of people would like to at least do without their commute.

ZK: Yes. So, oh, I have a lot to say about that. I come from the car industry, and not just from the normal car industry, I come from the performance car industry. And I’m a car guy, and I grew up in that industry, and I’m in an enthusiast market, and my business, my livelihood depends on that market continuing. It’s a huge market, by the way. So, replacement auto parts, somewhere in the $300-$315 billion a year total revenue for, I believe that’s globally. And then in the US, the performance market, just the want-based market, the upgrades, is like a $36 or $37 billion market, so it’s huge. If you talked to someone around the turn of the 20th century, they would’ve said, “This is a horse culture and people like riding their horses, and you’re not going to take my horse away from me, and I love a horse, and it’s too dangerous to drive in a motor carriage” and whatever else they might’ve said. And the truth is is that horses still do exist today and people still play with horses, but it’s a fraction of what it used to be, and it’s not a utilitarian thing anymore now, it’s an enjoyment thing. And I think that’s what’s going to happen with cars. I think that we’re going to see very, very few people choose to drive for any purpose of utility, of getting from point A to point B, but I do think it’s going to see a big resurgence as a sport, in terms of whether it’s racing or whether it’s going out into the country and driving. I don’t think anybody has to have their car taken away from them by force. I think that it’s going to be taken away from them because of convenience. You look at these things, it’s similar to how mobile phones have taken hold. You look at maybe—I’m probably right on the cusp; I’m 29, so I’m right on the cusp of the last generation who would’ve had a landline. I never had a landline. I had one growing up, but personally in my name I’ve never had a landline. And so, what happened was I grew up with a cell phone, and then when I have my own place and I’m on my own, after high school, after college, I decided I wouldn’t get a landline. I think that’s similar to what’s going to happen with cars. It’s not going to be that people decide to give their cars up, it’s going to be that there’s going to be an entire generation, the generation right now that’s growing up in cities and is using Uber and public transportation, a combination of that—they’re just never going to get a car.

MJ: Yeah. Well, and Matt and I talk a lot about that, just because our parents are quite a bit ahead of us and some of the things that they cling too. I mean, we’ve talked about checkbooks, landline phones and all of that. I’m also curious how you think this’ll impact—I mean, you mentioned the legalization of marijuana. One of my favorite questions around autonomous cars is how the laws are going to change around drunk driving, and how there’s at least a certain group that will cling to that kind of moral stance of, “Well, you shouldn’t get that drunk even if you’re not driving,” and how the laws will have to change and how society will adjust to that when you can just, you know, summon an Uber self-driving car even if you’re trashed, basically.

ZK: Well, I think you have to divide things into two categories: one is a autonomous-capable vehicle and one is a driverless car. And so, by this summer Tesla is rolling out there autopilot update, or maybe they already have, where 90% of the time the car can drive itself but it still has a steering wheel and it still has gas pedal, brake, and what not. So, I think that from a regulatory standpoint, all of those laws will stay in effect or apply to vehicles that have steering wheels and control pedals, and once those things are gone, to my knowledge at least, there’s no legal limit as to how drunk I can get in the back of an Uber. It all has to do with if you have the capability of controlling the vehicle, and I think that once you don’t have the ability to control the vehicle anymore, that goes out the window.

MB: I talked to my dad at one point about this, he’s a little older. But when I brought up the idea of driverless cars or autonomous cars, his first reaction was just, “They’ve been saying that literally for years. It’s not going to happen.” I started thinking about it, and they literally have been saying that since the ‘40s or ‘50s, that there was always that, “Well, they’re going to put wires in the roads and the cars will drive basically by wire through the roads.” I think older people have just been hearing about these autonomous cars for so many years and they never came to fruition, that they’re just kind of, at this point, “Show me, because otherwise I just don’t believe you, you’ve cried wolf too many times.”

ZK: The most common one I hear is, “Oh, they’ve been saying that we were going to get flying cars forever and that hasn’t happened.” There’s a big difference between people who are able to—50 years ago you could think up the concept of a flying car or an autonomous car, but the technology was not there. And you could say, “Yeah, but sure, and Popular Mechanics in 1955, they had examples of electronic eye-readers that was basically out by the side of the vehicle and it could read the line on the road, and it could steer the wheel and keep you in there.” And sure, it could handle some of those things, like the most basic driving on the highway and staying in between the lane. But what it can’t handle is what if there’s no white paint on the road, or what if all of a sudden somebody slams on the brake, or if a deer runs out in front of you? The short answer is that the popular technology of ten years from now is not a new technology that hasn’t been invented yet or that really we’re not that aware of, it’s a technology that exists today but it’s very, very expensive. So, when you look at one of Google’s autonomous cars, which they’ve logged millions of miles—hundreds of thousands or millions of miles—without any incidents, the technology is there. It’s not there in the way that it was on the front of Popular Mechanics in 1960 where, yeah, they can sort of make it work part of the time as long as there’s no other cars on the road and it’s a perfectly sunny day and everybody eats their Wheaties in the morning. It’s different now in that the technology is very, very good, it just needs to get much, much cheaper, and that’ll happen over the next 10 years.

MJ: What are some of the other technologies, besides autonomous cars, that you’re really looking forward to or that you’re kind of focused on as game-changers?

ZK: Huh, let me think about that for a second.

MJ: [laughs] Not to put you on the spot or anything, but…

ZK: Well, I know what I’m tempted to say and I’m just curious if there’s anything that I’m missing here. The one that comes to mind is virtual reality. I mean, that is…I think that’s still, amongst smart people, amongst people who look at trends and electronics, I’ll say the sort of people who think that maybe 10 or 15 years is not too unreasonable for autonomous cars, I think that people dramatically underestimate what the effect of virtual reality is going to be on society.

MJ: Yeah, that’s a big one that we’ve been interested in as well. I actually broke down and bought one of the development kits of the Oculus Rift just to finally get my hands on one that didn’t suck.

ZK: So, what’s been your experience with the Oculus so far?

MJ: Well, to be honest, it has mostly sat on my desk, but that’s partly, at the moment, a living arrangement thing. But the first day that I put it on, it was absolutely transformative as far as how I would interact with anything virtual. One of my frustrations has been with games and the controller and a screen kind of interface. I loved that when I was a kid, but as I’ve gotten older and not really had the time to put into mastering the interface, the interface just is a constant barrier to me getting into those things. And the couple of games I’ve played around with on VR, I was just blown away by how much they sucked you in and how just really immersive those experiences were, that I wanted more of it. So, I would use it more, but I’m sort of in a—my desk right now is just too crowded for it to be that comfortable, so that’s probably kept me away from it more than it not being useful.

ZK: Yeah, and it’s really good, I’d say. And for anyone listening who might be skeptical about virtual reality, you have to put one on. I mean until you put one on, you could say, “Okay, I can see. This is the first version and it’s really good. And the next one that comes out, the one that’s commercially available in a year or two is going to be mind-blowing.” And you touched on sort of active participation in games, and I think that that certainly has a pretty good potential. But we’re still a ways off from having a really good, perfect interface like you were talking about for replacing a controller or whatever it might be. But when you look at the amount of time that people spend today consuming media from a passive standpoint—I don’t know how much TV you guys watch, but the average American watches a tremendous amount of TV or video on their mobile phone, or podcasts, or music, or anything. And the experience of any of those things, of looking at any of those things on a 2D screen is just decimated by virtual reality. People spend something like 8.2 or 8.3 three hours per day on average consuming media from this standpoint. And so, in five years, if virtual reality is three times better than watching TV…the example that I like to give is how much time do you think people are going to spend in virtual reality once there’s really high quality virtual reality porn?

MJ: [laughs]

MB: [laughs]

ZK: I mean, like, between that and once the NFL is in 3D, you’ve got people spending a disportionate amount of time in virtual reality, at least from a male standpoint. So, I think it’s going to be just a game-changer; I think it’s going to change society in ways that we can’t even imagine, because people are going to plug in. Instead of watching TV or being on their phone, they’re going to be totally immersed in these incredible experiences that are happening in virtual reality.

MJ: I watched a NASA thing about the Apollo missions, where it took you on a fly-by around the rocket, that was just awe-inspiring for me. And then it put you in the rocket as it launched. You didn’t really get to see that much, in that you basically saw the control panel of the rocket with this little tiny triangle window that apparently that’s what the astronauts so. But it was absolutely amazing.

ZK: Yeah, and if you have experiences like that as reliable as running water, where you can just plug in and cycle through playlists of anything from Apollo blast offs to going cliff diving into water in the tropics, and into virtual porn, into being an Indy car driver or an F1 driver…for many people, I think the normal world is going to pale in comparison even more than it does today. I mean, look at how distracted people are by their cell phones, and the cell phone isn’t even that good. I mean, the iPhone is good, but it’s not that good.

MB: The other thing I think it’s going to change too is everybody keeps buying bigger and bigger TVs. With virtual reality, why do you need a huge TV if you can just put on virtual reality glasses and, “You can’t see the edge of the screen, so what difference does it make?” type of a thing, you know what I’m saying? To me…it’s an unlimited field of vision as opposed to, “Great, I have a 60-inch TV.”

ZK: I totally agree, and the effect that it’s going to have on movie theatres, who knows? I mean, people have been predicting the death of movie theatres for many, many years, but I could see this finally being the killing blow to movie theatres.

MB: Yeah, no, I think you’re right. Even if I’m watching let’s say an episode of “Friends,” I’m just throwing out a show there. But if you put on virtual reality and it feels almost—even without enhancement—if it feels like you’re sitting in Central Perk, kind of watching these people, to me that would be a lot more fun than just watching it on a large TV.

ZK: Yeah. My oldest brother is a consultant for Accenture, and maybe 10 years ago he told me about an experience he had where I think he met with a team in Japan, and they have a telepresence room. I don’t know if you guys have ever seen these, but it’s basically a half of a conference table that butts up against the wall, and then there’s these three projection screens that display the other people that you’re meeting with. And on their end, they sit at a semicircle conference table and it gives the impression of sitting there actually with them at a table and you can have an actual meeting. And it kind of looks maybe a little hokey at first, but then you sit down, and my brother said at the end of the hour-long meeting he got up and he started walking towards the wall to go shake their hand because he forgot. The brain so quickly takes the illusion as reality, even if the graphics aren't that convincing. That was 10 years ago. Think about how far technology has come since then, and we’re right around the corner from the Oculus Rift coming out. I think it’s going to be incredible; what’s going to happen, I think it’s going to be absolutely incredible.

MJ: I would think that would happen really quickly. Just thinking of the Oculus, pairing it with something like one of the telepresence robots, I have a guy I know who works for Cisco, and apparently they have a bunch of the telepresence robots that just wander around the office. People are working from home, but they’re controlling it. It’s got their face on it, on their webcam, and that apparently is just business as usual in the Cisco offices.

ZK: Yeah. You look at how that compares to—I like to think about “RoboCop.” I remember when I saw “RoboCop,” and they had video chat, and I was like, “Aw man! Can you imagine what it would be like to be able to see somebody’s face when you call?” And now we have Facetime and Skype, and the difference that that makes in terms of your ability to communicate with other people is huge. And when we have more of a telepresence, like the robots you’re talking about, paired with something like the Oculus Rift, I think it’s going to change the way that we communicate. There’s all sorts of ways that our need for in-person communication has decreased because we send text messages or we do phone calls, or we do Skype, and it’s going to decrease more with virtual reality. You know, this is one of my favorite topics because this is where—when I start talking about virtual reality, I think a lot of people get turned off because this is where people fall into that cognitive bias of saying, “I don’t want that to happen, so therefore I disagree with your prediction.” But it’s an inevitability, because the hardest thing to do is change behavior. Like, if people were consuming 15 minutes now and I was saying 10 years from now, 5 years from now, they’d be consuming 8 to 10 hours a day, that would be crazy; that shift in behavior is really hard. But people are already consuming the media, you’re just going to give them a much, much better way to do it. So like it or not, I think that you’re going to see most people with some sort of headset on for 6, 8, 10 hours a day by the end of, let’s say, 2020.

MB: Yeah.

MJ: Definitely lots to think about. So, Zack, where can people find you on the web if they’re interested in reading more of your thoughts about this kind of stuff?

ZK: Two places: so either on Twitter, which is @ZackKanter, or on my blog, ZackKanter.com.

MJ: Okay. Well, thanks so much for joining us tonight.

ZK: Yeah, thanks for having me, guys.

A: That’s all for this episode of Robot Overlordz. Are you interested in the future and how society is changing? We’d love to have you join our community. Visit our website to learn more and to connect with others that share that interest. You can find us at RobotOverlordz.FM. The site includes all of the show’s old episodes along with complete transcripts, links to more information about the topics and guests in each episode, and our mailing list and forums. We’d also love to hear what you think about the show. You can review us on iTunes or email us.

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MB: And I’m This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

A: We hope to see you again in the future…

MJ: Thanks everyone for listening.

MB: Thanks.

 

Image Credit: By Iskander HFC (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons