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There’s no doubt the world feels strange. For years the phrase “flying cars” has been a colloquialism to the impossible future. But now we have drones that can lift massive amounts of weight and algorithms to drive them autonomously—cars that fly pale in comparison to the coming realities of artificial intelligence, machine learning, and space travel. For many of us in technology fields, this is exciting: we grew up watching Blade Runner and reading Snow Crash, and the real world that’s emerging today feels a lot like the magical world that captivated us when we were young.

The realities of the COVID-19 pandemic also look a lot like the movies we grew up with. Unfortunately, the dystopian futures in The Last Man on Earth or The Road are less inspiring than the possibility of a human settlement on Mars. They do teach us an important lesson, however — the importance of human connection. We humans don’t do well in isolation. …


Jon Kolko

Chief Operating Officer, Modernist Studio

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