Friday, June 8, 2012
Over the ages our standard of living has, in general, risen and the way we live now is quite indistinguishable from how we lived in the past. There were times when we were not even sheltered properly from the weather and the winter could be a very uncomfortable, and often dangerous, time for everybody around. Houses could do little to keep out the cold and the rain and the cold and wet could be very hazardous. Our amenities such as running water, which we now take for granted, would also have been absent and hygiene was often a problem. With inadequate cooking facilities diets were also poor and it was not uncommon for people to suffer from illness as a result of their poor standard of living.
An Englishman’s Home Is His Castle
As time went by, we were able to look after ourselves better and our living conditions improved. Individuals’ wealth began to improve and day to day procedures meant we had more access to the things we need. Technological developments meant the things we need to keep our homes dry and warm became more affordable and more readily available along with other utilities such as running water and electricity. As our salaries began to rise and more jobs were available, there also came a point where most of us could afford our own accommodation instead of having to share homes in cramped conditions with many other people. In time, our homes became comfortable places that even poorer people could be proud of, but the improvements don’t look as though they are going to stop there.
Currently, most of us have monthly bills to pay including electricity and gas bills as we need to power our homes. The power we use comes from the power grid and through pipelines and we are charged for this according to how much we use. Even though poverty in the western world is quite rare, there are still people that may struggle to heat their homes during the winter, in particular old people that no longer have an income. In the not too distant future however, this could become a thing of the past as renewable energy sources that cost nothing to maintain will be replacing traditional power sources. Solar power could replace dirty, polluting power stations as improvements in the technology continue to decrease the cost of having it installed. There could be a point in the future where all of our power needs are supplied to us virtually free of charge and even the poorest of people can afford to keep their homes safe and warm in the winter.
Slowly but surely, our day to day tasks are being replaced by technology that is doing more and more for us. It won’t be long before we won’t even have to flick a light switch as this could be done with a simple voice command and we could even start running a bath without having to walk up the stairs. There could be a time when we have robots on hand that act as servants, catering to our every whim, leaving us with nothing to do but to relax and watch a movie or two. The first commercial robots would likely only be affordable to the very rich but in time they will become more affordable to everybody in society.
Big TVs and loud sound systems are popular across the world and there is no reason why their popularity should wane. Even poorer households get what home entertainment they can and in the western world, you will not find many homes that have no TV at all. In time however, TV’s will be replaced by virtual reality and holograms that will make home entertainment quite different from what it is today. No longer will entertainment mean staring at moving images on a screen, but about something that helps to get immersed in an environment, almost as though you are there in person. With the first commercial virtual reality technology already finding its way onto the market it may not be long before there is a virtual reality machine in every household.