Internet needs to be considered as an environment that establishes a context that allows fostering complementation. It also sustains virtual collaboration, which drives towards establishing actual business relationships.
Internet is becoming a “Virtual Emulation of the Real World” which drives to major changes in its development and use. This is a 10-year future scenario developed using unicist double dialectical logical inferences based on the actual conceptual functionality of Internet, the available technologies and those that are being introduced.
The purpose of this future research was to provide the trends of this activity to the worldwide community of Internet users. This research was led by Peter Belohlavek and Diego Belohlavek.
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The name Internet or www is already an anachronism because it describes an entity that seems to provide a network between the participants, but in fact evolved towards being an entity that has its own “artificial life”.
Internet, as an entity, is considered to have an artificial life because, as a timeless organization, it has a life of its own, and grows and evolves as a “virtual emulation of the world”.
At the beginning, it was a workspace for academics, scientists and researchers. It was an environment to integrate people dealing with technologies and science.
But it evolved to become the first global, bottom-up built, democratic, multi-minorities organized entity that emulates the world providing a reliable environment.
Now the Internet has already become an emulation of the world. As such, it is integrated by multiple cultures, languages, ethnicities, religions and histories that are integrated by a common meta-language and are ruled by a universal “common law”.
This common law is evolving extremely fast in order to avoid chaos and establish the limits between the inlaws and the outlaws without inhibiting the power of the bottom-up democracy that underlies Internet.
The meta-language is a virtual communication language that allows integrating people, building social capital, providing a pastime space, allowing addictive behaviors, making business and integrating all the aspects of human behavior that can be managed in a virtual environment.
The drivers towards Internet as an emulation of the world are:
- The influence of the Internet generation
- The anthropocentricity of human behavior
- The globalization of the markets
- The business opportunities
- The democratization that is implicit in its bottom-up approach
The new technologies that make the emulation possible are:
- The Web 2.0 and Future Web 3.0 technologies
- The responsive technologies to adapt to multiple hardware
- The development of virtual, commercial and semantic objects
- The segmentation based on predictors that allow building commercial communities.
What will have happened during the next 10 years?
- Internet will have become a business catalyst for all the central B2B providers.
- It will be the main tool for virtual collaboration and virtual marketing.
- It will have empowered the transparency and reliability of central participants.
- The parallel internet world will have grown enormously and will have generated the need to control it.
- A “common law” system will have been established.
- People will have become multi-minorities organized based on their values and interests.
- Education will have evolved focused on learning using virtual tools, changing structurally the role of teaching.
- Social networks will have changed towards multi-segmented communities in order to become commercially feasible.
- Customer support, counseling and coaching will be centrally managed on the Internet.
- Object driven marketing will be the core of the business use of the Internet.
- Healthcare will be strongly sustained by virtual monitoring and servicing.
The Real World and the Parallel World on the Internet
Internet emulates the real world and as such it has differentiated positions for its participants, which define the power they have in the world.
The paradox is that, although Internet is democratic, which means that everyone can earn a place based on the value that they add, the differentiation between the participants is frequently extreme.
There are two worlds in this “artificial world” defined by the Internet:
- A real world for those who participate in an adapted way.
- A parallel world for those who participate in an over-adapted way.
1) The Real World of Internet
Four segments have been identified in the Real World:
In the next ten years, within the Real World Internet, four segments that incipiently exist will be clearly developed:
The First World: It is the segment of all the websites that open the possibilities of the users by providing them a vision of the world that expands their boundaries. It is extremely democratic and ethic driven. The success of those that are in this segment depends on the capacity to adapt to changes in the environment while introducing changes to the environment. Google is an example of this segment. This segment allows using the Internet as a gravitational object to influence the behavior of the environment and as a catalyst for social actions and businesses.
The Second World: it is the world of all the servicing websites that add value to their users. This second world is more segmented and is focused on the minority that is a user of their services. It might also be multi-segmented when their service deals with social or commercial distribution. eBay is an example of this world. E-banking is also an example of this segment. Their success depends on their capacity of interpreting the needs of the segments and providing first choice alternatives for their users. This world allows using Internet as a catalyst for social actions and businesses.
The Third World: This is the world of all those that provide a space for individual exposure to their users; their value is given by their capacity to be an adequate vehicle to satisfy the individual need of being recognized. The social networks are examples of this world. This segment is based on building apparent relationships, which provide apparent recognition to the members. Their success depends on their capacity to build a true community that provides added value and not only a hollow space for individual expressions. This world allows using Internet as a vehicle for social and commercial proposals to their members.
The Fourth World: It is the world of the websites that have been built to install an organization, individuals or ideas in the Internet This segment is composed by the hygienic websites that need to exist in order to present an individual, an institution or an idea on the Internet, but that have no added value in themselves. These websites are based on the presentation of facts, actions or ideas without presenting any value adding proposal but “selling” an idea to the market. This is the massive world of the Internet that generates no feeling of belonging on behalf of the users. This world allows using Internet as a vehicle for virtual brochures for the market.
2) The Parallel World of Internet
There is also a parallel world on the Internet that is integrated by websites that are part of a pastime activity for those who manage them.
Four segments have been identified in the Parallel World:
Conspirators: This segment is composed by those websites that follow conspiracy theories that always publish an alternative version of an event that is happening or happened in the past.
Self-fulfilling: these are the websites of those individuals who consider that their opinion is important in the world and publish it without considering the actual added value of what they are publishing.
Terrorists: these are the websites that exert the power of destruction, including the self-destruction of what is part of an institutional structure.
Hackers: these are the websites that invade others in order to demonstrate their intellectual power and the weakness of others.
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