Question of the Day

Sorry, no posts at all today — work was miserable, and I didn’t get home until 10:45.

Here’s something I was thinking about on the drive home tonight.

If planned obsolescence was the great innovation of capitalism in the 1950s and since, what will be the next innovation regarding product durability and replacement? I was thinking something like a shift toward temporary platforms and subscription services which are always becoming obsolete, but instead of purchasing new goods/hardware, the consumer is grafted onto a system of perpetual replacement and updates, for which he or she pays a flat subscription fee. What does that mean for the technological economy? Will it have broader implications for the real economy as more and more of the “real” becomes virtual? How will that shift, if it will be the case, affect human social interactions and economic behavior?

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~ by Benji on 29 October 2008.

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