By Steve Costello
Arm gives youth a voice to help shape future tech
Arm chief Simon Segars used a keynote presentation to highlight the importance of engaging with young people, who will form the next-generation of consumers and creators enabled by technology.
He said: “In Arm, our technology takes a long time to be developed, to be deployed and delivered to people. So we are always trying to think ahead. We thought, ‘why don’t we start asking people what they think, why don’t we give them a voice in the future that we are trying to create with technology?’”
The executive was joined on stage by a panel of young people, who shared their views on issues such as healthcare, education, cybersecurity and the potential of 5G. “The benefits are only going to come from the kind of unencumbered thinking that youth has, that comes from not really knowing what is impossible. It creates a new optimism about what you can do with technology,” he said.
Arm has created a programme, called Generation Arm 2Z, “to get kids and young people engaged in the discussion about where technology is going to go next”. And the company also polled more than 2,000 people aged between 11-18 years old to get their views on technology.
It found 63 per cent would like robots to care for elderly parents. “That elderly is going to be you and I, so if you are working in robotics then start thinking about empathy, caring and sympathy, because that’s the technology we are all going to need,” Segars said.
A large number also see that social media platforms can be addictive – although only around half believe they themselves have an issue.
“There’s lots of optimism in there, but there’s also a really mature appreciation of some of the negatives that come from this digital technology we have now.”