There's a regular survey conducted in Spain that measures the main problems as perceived by our society. These are the top 5:
- Health service
These are all logical concerns, albeit somewhat immediate ones. I´m surprised to miss some really fundamental issues that scare the hell out of me.
Global warming gets a ridiculous 0.7%. It´s enclosed (I guess) under a generic label Environmental Issues, and the trend of the last months shows significant volatility like it´s affected by how much coverage the topic gets in the media. For me, the fact that this is getting hot as hell and you don´t need anyone to tell you because you can feel it is really worrying. If you need some perspective, check this out.
Another topic that isn´t even mentioned and falls under the category it can exterminate our species: Artificial Intelligence. I´ll say it again: this isn´t even mentioned. Would you have included this in the list of fundamental issues faced by humanity today? Maybe not. In case you are picturing Terminator in your head now and drawing a smile on your face I´m going to give you some reading material for the weekend:
Check this post on Artificial Intelligence in Tim Urban´s Wait But Why. It´s long form reading, so for those headline readers out there it will be perhaps hard to swallow. Tim´s prose is really fun and engaging though, so give it a try. It will give the big picture of a topic that concerns some of the brightest minds on the planet, i.e. this is relevant.
Now, when you finish that reading exercise you will find it hard to breathe normally again. In order to countermeasure that, I´ll give you some antidote:
Read this article by Kevin Kelly. He refutes most of the worries with really valid points that will bring additional insight into the topic. I read it this week and loved it, and provides some relief to the unbearable weight of knowing that, within our lifetime, we may witness a singularity that will change it all.
Both articles will give you endless material to post on Facebook or lightly discuss with your friends over some beers, which is no doubt the best way to wait for our inevitable extinction to reach us. Have a nice weekend guys!