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Thanks to the current Facebook scandal, we are critically reviewing the impact the company has on our society. And that's happening just in time. Facebook is about to transform from a social media company with indirect influence to an augmented reality company with direct in-your-face influence.
For decades we've been told that we will all be wearing augmented reality glasses in the future. But that future is getting near, because all big tech firms are getting ready for the launch of AR wearables. Besides being a more immersive way to view funny little animating characters, what will it mean if we're wearing a Facebook AR wearable? It will cause Mark Zuckerberg to even further control our perspective on the world.
We've already gotten used to the smartphone as our personal assistant, guiding us towards appointments, even responsible for arranging some of our activities. But with AR devices this guidance will continue during our activities too. Tech companies are using us and our data to be able to control us. It's time for an approach with humans at the centre, and an API to help us to be the one making decisions - and having options to choose from!
If need to understand why things appear, we need to be aware of our own meta data too. Because that's defining why certain content is specifically targeting us. By monitoring where our own content and data ends up, we can choose if and how we allow any profiling to happen. Perhaps we only decide to keep Facebook for its front-end interface. If we're free to choose components, we can choose to avoid the untraceable Facebook algorithms, demand openness or pick a provider of a Machine Learning service that we trust.
With a growing ecosystem of life enhancing apps, services and components, we can choose how we want to be guided through the day. One example of such a component is "IF THIS THEN I", which is an initiative that is a hands-on way to explore the ways to take back control. With just a few basic rules, this system will not be comparable to the advanced algorithms of the big influential social media companies, but it's a start. Instead of awaiting what will happen to us, it's better to get started with the creation of alternatives. We've already gotten accustomed to devices and software monitoring us and telling us how we're doing, this system is no different. Not feeling happy? By knowing what makes you happy, you're able to change it by reconfiguring yourself. Get ready for the future: BE YOUR OWN ROBOT!