Semi-sentient avatars and my optimised digital marketing fantasy.

Nike fuel band

Life will never be the same.

I miss the visionary novels of the one and only Ian M Banks. His mind-blowing Culture novels make me feel pessimistic and optimistic in equal measure. While artificial intelligence seems to have peaked at robot soccer tournaments; data, search, social and mobile stand on the verge of morphing into a semblance of Mr Banks’ omnipresent avatars.

Things are about to get interesting.

Open data, Google’s algorithms, smartphones and embedded RFID chips will soon be working in unison to anticipate and instantly serve our needs, wants and desires. How so? I am not talking about the Nike Fuel Band or Google Glass, cool and interesting as they are but rather extensions of the kind of project Disney has been working on.

Disney goes Culture novel on us.

In the near future, a trip to Disney World will start with a booking and visit planning session that will trigger a pre-programmed magic wristband. The band will contain an embedded RFID that communicates with sensors around the park. From the moment you enter the park by simply waving your hand at the gatekeeper, every ride, meal, meeting with Mickey and the gang, questions about the history of the park, and your dedicated space beside the parade, last minute ride, or seat at the firework show, will be facilitated by your magic wristband.

So it’s a band and not a Mind Ship (See Ian M Banks novels)

This magic wristband may not posses the visual and tactile force fields,  short-range wormhole based teleportation capabilities, electromagnetic effectors and matter manipulators of Mr Bank’s imagination, but it’s a start. Where we go from there is anyone’s guess.