From Point / Counterpoint, 17 May, 2000:
Humans will live in identical, low-ceilinged, one-roomed concrete dwellings, outfitted with little more than a bed and a telescreen, arranged in endless grid patterns stretching to the horizon.
I beg to differ with my colleague. Having read the futuristic accounts of William Gibson, Neal Stephenson, and Philip K. Dick, the path our future shall take will be bleak, indeed–but in a much different way.
When the ongoing trend of corporate mergers reaches critical mass in 2030, the scant handful of corporations that remain will be too powerful to resist and will ultimately supplant all government. National borders will crumble, replaced by warring corporate armies who deploy vat-grown Yakuza assassins to take down enemy CEOs in the name of commerce.
The future will be every color but gray–not that the future will be worth living in. Giant videoscreen billboards will cover the exposed surface of every skyscraper, bombarding our consciousness with advertising for anything and everything. Looking up will expose us to giant orbiting mylar superscreens bearing more logos and slogans. A citizen will be unable to walk down the street without encountering roving clouds made up of billions of microscopic nanoprobes that form corporate logos right before their very eyes.