What I advocate for the 21st century

These advocacies are for the advanced countries that are already adequately fed and which have acceess to modern medicine. An increasing fraction of the world's countries meet this criterion. In some important respects we are all rich compared to past societies and we're bound to get richer. Some people worry about this, but the rich hardly ever prefer to be poor. Some famous entertainer said, "I've been poor, and I've been rich. Believe me, rich is better."

  1. Maintain and improve individual transportation.

  2. Solve the parking problem by building parking space under the streets to as many levels as may be required. All this requires is a reduction the cost of construction or saving enough money on overheads of society, e.g. bureaucrats talking to each other.

  3. Computer controlled cars will probably be feasible in this century. I mean cars that can transport children, drunks, the blind, and others unable to drive and can be sent on errands without an occupant.

  4. In cities pedestrian traffic should be on an upper level, separated from vehicles by a small-child-proof barrier. Small children need to be able to wander about safely. To that end there may need to be recording surveillance cameras. This won't completely eliminate murders of chldren by strangers but can reduce it to an acceptable level - say to 1/100 of that by family members.

  5. I want to be able to enter a store, pick up an item and walk out. As I leave a voice says, "Thank you, Mr. McCarthy".

  6. The amount of work needed to keep house and take care of children needs a large further reduction. This will encourage intelligent women to have more children. Computer driven cars will help as would an automated delivery system. Computer driven cars will permit children to take care of themselves at a younger age than is presently possible.

  7. The problems of using airports can be greatly reduced by building an automotive level under the taxiways, apron, and runways. Each airline would have one or more small circular terminals, with lower level underground access. This would permit driving to and parking at the gate.

Many of the improvements proposed above require cheap heavy construction, perhaps supplemented by willingness for some improvements to take a long time.

I advocate solving the energy problem in a way that permits anyone to use as much energy as they wish and which permit new energy-intensive services, as may be desirable. Nuclear energy is the most probable way of solving the energy problem.

Computers have already permitted the automation of bureaucracies in many ways that make them easier to deal with, and this process has a lot further to go. The big improvement that I observe is that the person who answers the phone as immediate access to my complete dealings with the organization. Still we need to make computer system much easier to deal with.

Up to: main future page

Send comments to mccarthy@stanford.edu. I sometimes make changes suggested in them. - John McCarthy

The number of hits on this page since 2004 Feb 18.