9 Things That May Disappear in Our Lifetime

One of the most popular things on this blog has been “25 Things That Will Be Extinct in 25 Years”.  I am currently putting together another 25 More Things That Will Be Extinct in 25 Years.  In the meanwhile enjoy the following,  It was sent to me by my friend Harvey Lawrence.

1. The Post Office:  Get ready to imagine a world without the post office. They are so deeply in financial trouble that  there is probably no way to sustain it long term.  Email, Fastway, UPS and Fed Ex have just about wiped out the minimum revenue needed to keep the post office alive.  Most of your mail every day is junk mail and bills.

2. The Check:  Britain is already laying the groundwork to do away with cheques by 2018.  It costs the financial system billions of dollars a year to process checks.   Plastic cards and online transactions will lead to the eventual demise of the check.  This plays right into the death of the post office.  If you never paid your bills by mail and never received them by mail, the post office would absolutely go out of  business.

3. The Newspaper:  The younger generation simply doesn’t read the newspaper. They certainly don’t subscribe to a daily delivered print edition.  As for reading the paper online, get  ready to pay for it.  The rise in mobile Internet devices and e-readers has caused all the newspaper and magazine publishers to  form an alliance.  They have met with Apple, Amazon,and the major cell   phone companies to develop a model for paid subscription services.

4. The Book:  The e-reader has already largely replaced books for the pleasure  reader. You say you will never give up the physical book that you hold in your hand and turn the literal pages. Many said the same thing about downloading music from iTunes because they wanted hard copy CD. When they discovered they get albums for half the price without ever            leaving home to get the latest music, they changed their minds. The same thing will happen with books.  You can browse a bookstore online and even read a preview chapter before you buy. And the price is less than half that of a real book.  Just think of the convenience!  Once you start flicking your fingers on the screen instead of the book, you find that you’re lost in the story, can’t wait to see what happens next, and you forget that you’re            holding a gadget instead of a book.

5. The Land Line Telephone:  Unless you have a large family and make a lot of local calls, you don’t need it anymore.  Most people keep it simply because they’ve always had it.

6. Music:  This is one of the saddest parts of the change story.  The music industry is dying a slow            death.  Not just because of illegal downloading.  It’s the lack of innovative new music being given a chance to get to the people who would like to hear it.  Greed and corruption is the problem.  The record labels and the radio conglomerates are simply self-destructing.  Over 40% of the music purchased today is “catalogue items”, meaning traditional music that the public is familiar with. Older established artists.  This is also true on the live concert circuit.  To explore this fascinating and  disturbing topic further, check out the book, “Appetite for Self-Destruction” by Steve Knopper, and the video documentary, “Before the Music Dies.”

7.  Television:  Revenues to the networks are  down dramatically.  Not just because of the economy.  Many people are watching TV and movies streamed from their computers. And they’re playing games and doing lots of other things that take up the time that used to be spent watching TV.  Prime time shows  have degenerated down to lower than the lowest common denominator.  Cable rates are skyrocketing and commercials run about every 4 minutes and 30 seconds.  It’s time for the cable            companies to be put us out of our misery.  People will choose what they want to watch online and through Netflix.

8. The “Things” That You Own:  Many of the very possessions that we used to own are still in our lives, but we may not actually own them in the future.  They may simply reside in “the  cloud.”  Today your computer has a hard drive and you store your pictures, music, movies, and documents.  Your software is on a CD or DVD, and you can always re-install it if need be.  But all of that is changing.  Apple, Microsoft, and Google are all finishing up their latest “cloud services.”  That means when you turn on a     computer, the Internet will be built into the operating system. So, Windows, Google, and the Mac OS will be tied straight into the Internet.  If you click an icon, it will open something in the            Internet cloud.  If you save something, it will be saved to the cloud.  And you may pay a monthly subscription fee to the cloud provider.  In this virtual world you can access your music or your books, or your whatever from any laptop or handheld device. That’s the good news.  But will you actually own any of this “stuff”, or will it all be able to disappear at any moment in a big “Poof?”  Will most of the things in our lives be disposable  and whimsical?  It makes you want to run to the cupboard and pull out            that photo album, grab a book from the shelf, or open up a CD case and pull out the insert.
9. Privacy:   If there ever was a concept that we can look back on nostalgically, it would be privacy.  That’s  gone.  It’s been gone for a long time anyway.  There are cameras on the street, in most of the buildings, and even built into your computer and cell phone.  But you can be sure that 24/7,            “They” know who you are and where you are, right down to the GPS coordinates, and the Google Street View.  If you buy something, your habit is put into a zillion profiles, and your ads will change to            reflect those habits.  “They” will try to get you to buy something else. Again and again.