The future, according to its creators
Douglas Adams, the author of
wrote: “I’ve come up with a set of rules that describe our reactions to technologies:
“1. Anything that is in the world when you’re born is normal and ordinary and is just a natural part of the way the world works.
“2. Anything that’s invented between when you’re 15 and 35 is new and exciting and revolutionary and you can probably get a career in it.
“3. Anything invented after you’re 35 is against the natural order of things.”
I’ve been thinking about this while I was putting together this issue of
For the first time, we have added digital agencies to our annual round- up of Faces to Watch, which takes up much of this issue of the magazine. (We’ve also added PR, which will be in the next issue, along with media.)
The rising digital stars are grouped in with those from creative agencies, although ‘digital’ is at home anywhere within the industry.
For those Faces listed here – and for the other nominations that I agonisingly had to cut ( this was not a pleasant task; I ask you to please forgive us if you didn’t make the final list) – the iPhone was invented in Douglas Adams’s phase 2 – even phase 1 for some of them. So were Facebook and Twitter and selfies.
And for at least the next five years, they will be watching exciting and revolutionary new technologies appear and will be able to make a career out of them.
Those of us who find ourselves on the wrong side of phase 3 will be forced to stare on aghast and uncomprehending, with a look of combined fear, confusion and gloom.
Or, worse, we will try to get down with the kids by becoming advocates for new technology that we know little about.
So it is reassuring to find that these TOVEs ( threats to our very existence) are very rational and realistic about technology.
Sure, they can see the rise of AI and other emergent technologies. And yes, they will forge their careers using these inventions in ways that we old guard can’t even imagine.
But read through their thoughts and you will find that they still see storytelling, big ideas, insight and cooperation as the cornerstones of the communications industry, digital or otherwise.
Those things have been around forever, and they are in safe hands as this wealth of young talent swells in its ranks and pushes our industry onwards and upwards.