Internet is only a couple of decades old, and the uses and applications have not even begun to scratch the surface of this ongoing revolution.
While companies are still gathering and structuring all their data (and struggling with it, as many don’t have a decent data strategy), it seems that people are staying behind.
Yes, companies and governments do collect a lot of data, and the GAFAM companies have an enormous collection of people data, probably about you as well.
And they do provide you with good services.
But a company only provides a service when there are benefits for the company. Furthermore, regulation prevents them to use personal data for certain types of use.
What is missing?
Your digital footprint has become huge, and these online traces of you actually reflect a lot of your behavior.
Of course, there is the issue of privacy and anonymity, but we are not going to focus on this interesting topic.
Solid is about sharing your data, and choosing to whom and for which purpose.
Why would you want to share your data?
Well, maybe you want to share your songs to become a famous artist, or the pictures of your baby to show how proud you are that you became a parent to your friends and family.
Of course, you can already do that now… But you’ve shared your data to advertisers and politicians as well.
SOLID offers a solution that lets you share the data to ONLY the people and organisations you want.
To me, that is not the biggest advantage of SOLID - though it actually is quite an important part in terms of your human rights-.
The big advantage is: putting all your personal data together will allow you (and the companies, people and services you trust) to gain much deeper insights about yourself.
It can improve your life and well-being. Pretty much like a dishwasher relieves you from doing the dishes yourself, data services can save you time and effort.
When you have all the data about what you ate the past year, and where you bought it, and how long it stayed in your fridge,…
You can imagine that you can get even better and automated services than what Hello fresh can offer now. Less food waste (saving money and carbon), grocery to door delivery (saving time and effort; and because you can share when you are home to your delivery service, you will be there to pick it up in time).
The pursuit of happiness.
How can data help you to feel happier?
Well, this is a tricky one.
But psychology already knows a lot about well being, flow, concentration, rewards, stress, social needs, oxytocin &c. Meditation and therapy are two ways that can be improved and quite cheap using your data for bio-feedback and reinforcement. You can design apps that will improve your general well being, need for achievement and happiness. Having your behavioral and health data will help achieve these quality improving apps.
When your medical records are integrated with your dietary intake, your movement, exercise and sports data, as well as your smart watch data (which can monitor hearth rate, oxygen level, blood pressure,…) : having access to a very precise and accurate image of your health can help enormously in preventive healthcare, and will also be a huge benefit to the further understanding of ourselves.
Maybe the above two examples seem exotic or a bit too academic… they are actually but very achievable use cases. When you have access to all this data…
I could go on to give examples, and indeed, I will in other articles or writings, but the following idea should start to dawn:
Bringing personal data together opens up a whole new range of services.
From data to insights, from insights to knowledge.
Intelligence, human intelligence, collective intelligence and artificial intelligence is all data processing.
Creativity and innovations is all about connecting the dots.
By making it possible to connect personal data, the potential benefits, for companies, government and citizens are virtually limitless.
You are enabled to become your own big brother.
Do you dare to learn more about who you really are?