How Unusual Forms of Digital Assets Will Transform Our World by 2040
In the fast-paced world of digital technology, the idea of what constitutes a digital asset is changing rapidly.
Beyond cryptocurrencies and digital art, we can expect to see many new kinds of digital assets in the future. By 2040, I feel certain that these “assets” will begin to impact many parts of our lives and society.
For example, we can all look forward to Emotional AI Profiles that can understand and react to our unique emotional states. There’s also the potential for AI companions that learn and develop a personalized relationship with us.
We also expect to see tradeable Synthetic Media Rights as AI-generated media becomes more like human-made content. There could even be many forms of ownership and trade in Digital Ecosystems, such as virtual worlds or digital real estate. As quantum computing becomes a reality, Quantum Computing Power could also become a valuable digital asset.
In healthcare, we might see Genetic Data and Personalized Health Profiles becoming important assets that can be leveraged to improve personal medicine. As decentralized networks become more common, we might see several kinds of assets within Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs) becoming tradable digital assets.
Cognitive Models that mirror specific cognitive processes or patterns could open up new possibilities for personalization and research. Lastly, as quantum computing challenges current encryption methods, Advanced Encryption Keys could become very valuable digital assets.
As we step through the possibilities, we’ll quickly see the amazing potential of digital assets in a world that’s constantly blurring the lines between the physical and the virtual.
A Periodic Table Organizer of Future Digital Assets
Categories of Digital Assets
As we step further into the digital era, we begin to see how new forms of digital assets will begin to transform the way we do business. Even though it may be hard to grasp the specifics, given the rapid rate of tech advancements, here are a few broad categories to consider:
Emotional AI Profiles:
AI will continue to improve at reading, interpreting, and responding to human emotions. Unique AI profiles that have learned to emulate or respond to specific people’s emotional patterns could become a new form of digital asset.
Digital beings that evolve, learn, and interact on a personal level with humans could become significant digital assets, whether they’re serving as companions, educators, or personal assistants.
Synthetic Media Rights:
As AI progresses, we’ll see more “synthetic” media, such as artificially generated voices, images, or videos that are nearly indistinguishable from those created by humans. Rights to use specific synthetic media elements could become a valuable asset.
Entire virtual ecosystems might be owned, traded, or licensed. This could include digital real estate, virtual worlds, or even complex simulations used for research.
Quantum Computing Power:
As quantum computing becomes more mainstream, access to quantum computing power or time on quantum computers could be a digital asset.
As we become more adept at understanding and manipulating genetic data, individual or specific strands of genetic data could become a digital asset.
Personalized Health Profiles:
Advanced health data, including personalized health recommendations based on AI analysis of personal medical history and real-time health data, could become a digital asset.
Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs) Assets:
DAOs could become more complex, and their components (like voting rights or decision-making algorithms) could become digital assets.
AI models of specific cognitive processes or individuals’ cognitive patterns could be valuable in various contexts, from research to personalization.
Advanced Encryption Keys:
With the rise of quantum computing, more advanced forms of encryption will become necessary. Unique keys for these encryption methods could become valuable digital assets.
Emotional AI Profile-Builder
1. Emotional AI Profiles
a. Emotional AI Profiles:
With the advancements in machine learning and affective computing, AI has been learning to understand, mimic, and respond to human emotions more accurately. These skills can be applied in a wide variety of sectors, resulting in unique Emotional AI Profiles.
b. Personalized Marketing Profiles:
Emotional AI could be used in the field of marketing to understand consumers on a deeper emotional level. These profiles could provide insights into an individual’s emotional response to certain products, brands, or advertisements, allowing for highly personalized marketing strategies.
c. Therapeutic AI Companions:
Emotional AI Profiles could also be used in mental health therapy, with AI companions capable of understanding and responding to an individual’s emotions effectively. These companions could provide immediate therapeutic conversations, comfort, or advice based on the individual’s emotional state.
d. Virtual Reality Experiences:
Emotional AI profiles could also be used in virtual reality to create highly immersive and emotionally engaging experiences. These could be used for entertainment, therapy, training, or education.
e. AI Personal Assistants:
Personal assistants could be upgraded with Emotional AI Profiles to understand better and respond to the emotional state of their users. They could potentially detect stress, joy, frustration, or sadness in the user’s voice and react accordingly, providing a more human-like interaction.
f. Emotion-Driven Content Creation:
Emotional AI Profiles could be employed in content creation, generating music, artwork, or stories that correspond to or help modulate an individual’s emotional state.
In all these examples, an Emotional AI Profile becomes a highly valuable digital asset, capturing a deep understanding of an individual’s emotional patterns, responses, and triggers. As such, they can be customized, traded, or licensed to various sectors as per the requirement, adhering to strict privacy and ethical guidelines.
Living with an AI Companion
2. AI Companions
AI Companions represent a category of digital assets with significant growth potential. These AI-powered entities can interact with humans in a personalized, understanding, and supportive manner. As the technology advances, the customization and functionality of these AI Companions will likely expand dramatically, making them highly valuable digital assets. Here are some examples of how they might be used:
a. Personalized Tutor AI Companions:
These AI companions could provide personalized tutoring, adjusting their teaching style to a student’s learning style and pace. The tutor AI could potentially be a subject matter expert in various domains, making them highly valuable for individuals and educational institutions.
b. Healthcare AI Companions:
These companions can monitor an individual’s health and provide support for chronic conditions or rehabilitation exercises. They could remind patients about medication, provide mental health support, and even alert healthcare professionals if urgent attention is needed.
c. Fitness AI Companions:
A fitness-focused AI companion could provide personalized workout routines, nutritional advice, and motivation. These companions could interact with wearable devices to track progress and adjust fitness plans accordingly.
d. Elderly Care AI Companions:
These companions can provide company, monitor health, and assist with daily tasks for older adults. They could even provide reminders for medication appointments and communicate with healthcare providers or family members in case of emergencies.
e. Professional Mentor AI Companions:
These companions could provide professional guidance, helping individuals improve their skills, prepare for interviews, or make career decisions. They could learn from the individual’s past experiences and performance to provide highly tailored advice.
f. Childcare AI Companions:
These companions can provide educational games, stories, and other activities to engage children. They can also monitor a child’s safety and provide a communication channel between the child and their parents when they are not around.
Ownership and trade of these AI Companions could exist on blockchains, where each AI Companion’s learning and interactions could contribute to their over-arching value. For example, an AI Companion with years of specialized healthcare training could be worth more than a newly created AI Companion. Similarly, an AI Companion that has helped successfully tutor dozens of students could be highly sought after in the marketplace.
A Nike shoe designed by Dale Chihuly
3. Synthetic Media Rights
As AI technology advances, it’s becoming possible to create synthetic media — artificially generated or modified media that includes images, videos, audio, and text. These synthetic creations can be highly customized and targeted, leading to a myriad of potential applications.
However, as the creations are synthetic, the traditional model of rights and ownership can become blurred. Synthetic media rights will thus be a critical component in the digital assets of the future. Here are a few examples:
a. AI-Generated Art:
AI has already shown its capacity to create art, with AI-generated pieces selling for significant amounts. The ownership rights of these pieces, including replication and distribution, could become valuable digital assets. The AI that created the art might also be viewed as a valuable asset.
b. Deepfake Rights:
As controversial as they are, deepfakes (synthetic media where a person in an existing image or video is replaced with someone else’s likeness) represent an example of synthetic media rights. In the future, permissions or licenses to create deepfakes of certain individuals (say, for a satirical comedy show) could become digital assets.
c. Synthetic Voice Rights:
Companies are creating increasingly realistic synthetic voices that can be used for audiobooks, customer service, and more. The rights to use these unique, AI-generated voices could be bought and sold as digital assets.
d. Synthetic Celebrity Endorsements:
AI could create synthetic videos of celebrities endorsing products. The rights to create and use these synthetic endorsements could become digital assets, with the caveat that they would likely require the consent of the celebrities involved.
e. Virtual Reality (VR) Experiences:
As VR experiences become more advanced, there may be synthetic representations of people, places, or things. The rights to use these synthetic representations within VR could become digital assets.
f. News or Content Generation:
AI tools are increasingly capable of generating news articles or other forms of content. The rights to use and distribute this AI-generated content could be bought and sold as digital assets.
These examples show that as our media becomes more synthetic and AI-driven, rights and ownership models will need to adapt. As blockchains provide an immutable record of these rights, synthetic media rights will create a significant category of digital assets by 2040.
Smart City Ecosystem Designs!
4. Digital Ecosystems
Digital Ecosystems are complex networks or communities that consist of interconnected digital technologies, services, applications, and users. As more aspects of our lives become digitized, we’re seeing the rise of these intricate ecosystems, which can be considered as holistic digital environments.
These ecosystems have the potential to become valuable digital assets in themselves, offering a wealth of opportunities for users to interact, transact, and create value. Here are some examples of how digital ecosystems could become digital assets in the future:
a. Digital Health Ecosystems:
In the future, personalized health ecosystems may exist that consolidate a person’s health data, treatment plans, digital therapeutics, and health support networks. Owning or having access to such an ecosystem could be a significant asset, both for individuals and healthcare providers.
b. Smart City Ecosystems:
These could consist of interconnected networks of smart devices, autonomous vehicles, energy grids, public services, and more. The right to manage or utilize such a comprehensive ecosystem could become a valuable digital asset.
c. Educational Ecosystems:
Imagine a personalized educational ecosystem that brings together a user’s learning history, AI-driven tutor support, interactive learning modules, and more. The access or ownership of such ecosystems could be traded as digital assets.
d. Financial Ecosystems:
In the world of decentralized finance, digital ecosystems of smart contracts, cryptocurrencies, lending platforms, and insurance policies already exist. As they grow in sophistication and interconnectivity, these ecosystems themselves can become valuable assets.
e. Sustainable Ecosystems:
As the world becomes more eco-conscious, digital ecosystems that monitor and manage sustainable practices (like carbon offsets, recycling programs, and renewable energy sources) could become important digital assets.
f. Gaming and Entertainment Ecosystems:
The ownership or rights to access comprehensive gaming ecosystems (including in-game assets, characters, storylines, etc.) could be seen as digital assets, particularly as the metaverse expands.
These are just some examples of how digital ecosystems could evolve to become significant assets in the future. These ecosystems may become marketplaces for a wide variety of other digital assets as well, creating a vast network of interconnected digital property.
The Quantum Algorithm Marketplace
5. Quantum Computing Power
Quantum Computing Power represents a massive leap in computational capabilities, harnessing the principles of quantum mechanics to perform complex calculations at speeds unimaginable with today’s classical computers. The adoption of quantum computing on a broader scale could lead to the emergence of new types of digital assets. Here are a few examples:
a. Quantum Processing Time:
Quantum computers are expensive and require specialized environments to operate. Therefore, access to quantum processing time could become a valuable digital asset. Users could buy, sell, or lease their quantum computing power to others who need it for specific tasks or periods.
b. Quantum Algorithms:
Quantum computers operate based on a completely different set of principles compared to classical computers. This necessitates the development of new quantum algorithms. Ownership rights or licenses to use such quantum algorithms could become valuable digital assets in the future.
c. Quantum Secure Keys:
Quantum computers pose a threat to current encryption methods, potentially able to break them much quicker than classical computers. Quantum key distribution (QKD) offers a solution to this by using quantum mechanics to secure communication and generate unbreakable encryption keys. These quantum secure keys could be considered a new form of digital asset.
d. Quantum Cloud Services:
As cloud services today provide storage and processing power as a service, future cloud services could provide quantum computing power as a service. Subscriptions or usage rights to such services could be traded as digital assets.
e. Quantum Software:
As the field of quantum computing evolves, so too will the need for specialized software that can run on these machines. Such software could become a digital asset, with users trading licenses or usage rights.
f. Quantum Machine Learning Models:
Quantum machine learning, a merger of quantum physics and machine learning, could result in significantly more powerful and efficient models. Access to, or ownership of, these quantum-powered models could be a digital asset of considerable value.
In the future, the increasing need for powerful computing solutions to tackle complex problems could help push the value of these quantum computing-related assets.
Genetic Ancestry Services
6. Genetic Data
Genetic Data is a rich repository of information that holds immense potential for various industries, especially healthcare and personalized medicine. The advancements in genomics and the rise of direct-to-consumer genetic testing kits have made genetic data more accessible than ever before. Here are a few ways genetic data might become a valuable digital asset in the future:
a. Personalized Medicine:
Genetic data can help healthcare providers offer personalized treatment plans based on a patient’s genetic predispositions. People could sell or license their genetic data to pharmaceutical companies or medical researchers to develop personalized therapies.
b. Genetic Research:
Scientific researchers could access pools of genetic data to study various genetic disorders, evolution, and other biological phenomena. Access to such data could be tokenized and traded as a digital asset.
c. Genome Sequencing Services:
Individuals might want their genomes sequenced for various reasons – disease detection, ancestry exploration, or even pure curiosity. The rights to use or access these sequencing services could become digital assets, with tokens representing the sequencing capacity of a certain service or machine.
d. Genetic Ancestry:
Companies that provide genetic ancestry services could offer tokens that represent the right to access their services. Users could buy, sell, or trade these tokens, essentially making access to one’s ancestral information a digital asset.
e. Personal Health Records:
Digital platforms could enable individuals to maintain, control, and share their genetic data as part of their comprehensive health records. They could decide to monetize this data by providing access to healthcare providers, researchers, or pharmaceutical companies.
f. Synthetic Genes and Organisms:
In the future, we may be able to design synthetic genes or organisms for various purposes, from biofuel production to disease treatment. The rights to these synthetic biological entities could become digital assets themselves.
As with any data-based digital asset, privacy and security are paramount. Effective strategies will need to be in place to ensure that individuals’ genetic data is protected and used ethically. However, with the right safeguards, genetic data could become a key player in the digital asset marketplace of 2040.
Personalized Health Profiles
7. Personalized Health Profiles
Personalized Health Profiles refer to comprehensive, individualized digital representations of a person’s health status, lifestyle, medical history, and genetic data. These profiles could revolutionize personalized healthcare, preventive medicine, and wellness initiatives. Here are a few ways Personalized Health Profiles might become valuable digital assets in the future:
a. Healthcare Providers:
Personalized Health Profiles can help healthcare providers offer tailored medical advice, treatment plans, and preventive measures based on a person’s unique health data. As such, access to these profiles could become a tradable digital asset. Patients could potentially license their profiles to healthcare providers in return for services, discounts, or other benefits.
b. Medical Research:
Access to a large, anonymized dataset of Personalized Health Profiles could be incredibly valuable for medical researchers studying various diseases, lifestyle impacts, or public health trends. These datasets could be tokenized and traded as digital assets, with appropriate safeguards in place to protect individuals’ privacy.
c. Wellness and Fitness Industries:
Personalized Health Profiles could become a key part of personalized fitness and wellness programs. Fitness trainers, nutritionists, and wellness coaches could tailor their services based on a client’s health profile. Access to these profiles could be tokenized and become a tradeable digital asset.
d. Insurance Industry:
In the insurance industry, Personalized Health Profiles could help assess an individual’s risk profile more accurately, which could impact insurance premiums and policies. While there would need to be strict regulations around privacy and discrimination, certain aspects of these health profiles could become valuable digital assets in this context.
e. Pharmaceutical and Biotech Companies:
These companies could use Personalized Health Profiles to help design and test personalized treatments or therapies. Rights to use these profiles for research could become tradeable digital assets.
f. Personalized Health Applications:
The rise of health-related apps that offer personalized insights and recommendations based on individual health data is a testament to the potential value of Personalized Health Profiles. As these apps become more sophisticated and widely used, the profiles they’re based on could be seen as valuable digital assets.
As with all health-related data, privacy and ethical use are paramount when it comes to Personalized Health Profiles. Mechanisms would need to be in place to ensure that this data is protected and used responsibly, with individuals retaining control over who has access to their profiles and for what purposes. However, with the right safeguards, Personalized Health Profiles will likely become an integral part of the digital asset ecosystem of the future.
Shared DAO Infrastructure
8. Decentralized Autonomous Organizations
Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs) are blockchain-based entities that operate via smart contracts, often without any centralized control. As DAOs become more prevalent, it’s likely that associated DAO assets will also become important digital assets. Here are some examples:
a. DAO Tokens:
Many DAOs use tokens to manage membership and voting rights within the organization. These tokens are often tradeable and can rise in value as the DAO grows and becomes more influential. For example, members of a successful DAO focused on art curation might see the value of their tokens increase as the DAO acquires more valuable artwork.
b. DAO-Specific Digital Assets:
Depending on their focus, DAOs might produce or control various digital assets. A DAO focused on digital art, for example, might create and own NFTs. These could be valuable digital assets in their own right, tied to the success and reputation of the DAO.
c. Shared DAO Infrastructure:
Some DAOs might invest in shared digital infrastructure, such as servers or software licenses. These could become valuable digital assets, especially if the DAO has a successful track record of managing and utilizing its resources effectively.
d. DAO Intellectual Property:
A DAO might produce valuable intellectual property, such as unique algorithms, proprietary software, or innovative business strategies. If tokenized, this intellectual property could become a tradeable digital asset.
e. Revenue Rights:
In some cases, DAOs may sell rights to a portion of their future revenue. This can be tokenized as a digital asset, allowing investors to purchase and trade these rights on the open market.
f. DAO Contracts:
DAOs often enter into various contracts and agreements with other entities. These contracts, especially those with favorable terms, could be valuable digital assets.
g. Investments and Holdings:
DAOs often pool resources to invest in other projects or assets. The rights to the returns from these investments can be tokenized and traded as digital assets.
As the world becomes more decentralized, DAO assets are likely to become an increasingly important category of digital assets. However, as with all blockchain-based systems, it’s crucial to ensure that DAOs and their associated assets are managed in a transparent and equitable manner.
Digital Therapy Tools
9. Cognitive ModelsCognitive Models are the representations of how individuals think, reason, and make decisions. As we move into an era dominated by artificial intelligence and machine learning, these models will likely become valuable digital assets in various ways:
a. AI Training Data:Cognitive models can serve as training data for AI systems, helping them to understand and predict human behavior more accurately. For example, a cognitive model that accurately represents how people make purchasing decisions could be highly valuable for companies in the retail sector.
b. Personalized AI Assistants:Cognitive models could be used to create personalized AI assistants that understand their users’ thinking and decision-making processes intimately. These assistants could become valuable digital assets, with people willing to pay for AI that truly understands them.
c. Digital Therapy Tools:Cognitive models could be used in digital therapy tools to help individuals understand and change their thought processes. For example, a cognitive model of a person suffering from anxiety could be used to create a digital tool that helps them to identify and challenge unhelpful thought patterns.
d. Educational Tools:Cognitive models could be used to create more effective educational tools. For example, a cognitive model of how a student learns and retains information could be used to create a personalized learning program.
e. Market Research:Cognitive models can be used to predict consumer behavior, making them valuable assets for market research. Companies could purchase or license these models to improve their marketing strategies.
f. Behavioral Insights:Cognitive models that can provide deep insights into individual or group behavior may be leveraged in fields like psychology, sociology, marketing, political science, etc. These insights could be tokenized and traded as digital assets.
g. Virtual Reality and Gaming:Cognitive models could be used to create more realistic and engaging virtual characters in games or VR environments, leading to a more immersive experience. The development, trading, and implementation of cognitive models as digital assets will require careful consideration of privacy and ethical issues. However, if managed responsibly, these models could significantly improve the functionality and personalization of many digital services and products.
Advance Encryption Key-Maker
10. Advanced Encryption Keys
Advanced Encryption Keys, or more sophisticated versions of them that might evolve in the future, will play an integral role in our increasingly digital world. As privacy and security concerns continue to escalate, these advanced encryption keys could serve as crucial digital assets. Here’s how:
a. Secure Communication:
In the era of secure communication, owning an advanced encryption key can ensure your communication is only accessible to intended recipients. As more businesses and individuals value privacy, the demand for such keys may increase, transforming them into tradeable digital assets.
b. Digital Property Access:
As our homes and vehicles become more automated and connected, advanced encryption keys may act as the digital equivalents of physical keys. These ‘smart keys’ could be traded, sold, or leased, much like physical property.
c. Access to Premium Content and Services:
Advanced encryption keys could be used to grant access to premium digital content and services. For instance, a streaming platform could provide an encryption key as part of a premium subscription, giving users access to exclusive content.
d. Blockchain and Cryptocurrency:
As blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies evolve, so too will the need for more advanced encryption keys. These keys could become valuable digital assets, similar to how private keys are currently used to access and manage cryptocurrencies.
e. Data Protection Services:
Companies specializing in data protection may sell advanced encryption keys as part of their services. These keys could be used to encrypt sensitive data, making it unreadable to anyone without the corresponding decryption key.
f. Quantum Computing Protection:
With the advent of quantum computing, traditional encryption methods may become vulnerable. Advanced encryption keys resistant to quantum decryption could be highly valued digital assets in this scenario.
As these examples show, advanced encryption keys are poised to become vital digital assets, particularly as we continue to grapple with issues of digital privacy and security. However, the storage, management, and trade of these keys will also need to be done responsibly to avoid potential misuse.
Synthetic Planning Systems
How Existing Government Systems become Dysfunctional with the Proliferation of Digital AssetsThe advent of digital assets will undeniably reshape the global economy and with it, our existing systems. This is especially true when it comes to our tax systems. Designed in an era where physical goods and property were the primary forms of wealth, traditional income tax systems will face significant hurdles in dealing with the emerging digital economy.
1. Identification and Valuation of Digital Assets:As digital assets continue to diversify and evolve, identifying and valuing these assets for tax purposes will become increasingly complex. For example, how do you place a dollar value on a personal AI companion or an emotional AI profile? Their value may be more about personal utility rather than a universally accepted market value. The complexities intensify with assets like digital ecosystems, which may host a myriad of other digital assets within them.
2. Decentralized Nature of Digital Assets:Many digital assets will likely exist on decentralized platforms or ecosystems. These platforms, such as blockchain-based Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs), can facilitate the creation, exchange, and ownership of digital assets without a centralized authority. This decentralization makes the regulation and tracking of transactions for tax purposes particularly challenging.
3. High-Volume, Low-Value Transactions:The digital economy may be characterized by a high volume of low-value transactions, which are often difficult to track. For example, microtransactions for Quantum Computing Power or small payments for using Synthetic Media Rights could number in the thousands or millions for a single individual or entity.
4. Advanced Encryption and Privacy Measures:Future digital assets, especially those protected by advanced encryption methods, could provide opportunities for tax evasion. Tracing these assets could be near impossible without the associated decryption keys, raising issues of privacy, security, and law enforcement.
5. Global Nature of Digital Assets:Digital assets are inherently global, often residing on networks that span national boundaries. This raises significant questions about jurisdiction and the right of nations to tax transactions or ownership of these assets. In light of these challenges, it’s clear that traditional income tax systems will struggle to accommodate the rise of digital assets. To stay effective, tax policy and enforcement will need to innovate at a similar pace to the technology itself, embracing novel methods of identification, valuation, and tracking. Governments will need to collaborate on an international level to establish consistent rules and prevent tax evasion, all while ensuring they respect the rights and privacy of their citizens. This future necessitates a delicate balancing act, but one we must achieve to ensure a fair and functional economic system in the digital age.
Synthetic Planning Systems