Since the nineteenth century, big public events called world fairs have been organized. Fairs are divided into universal and specialized fairs. World expositions have one of the largest economic and cultural impacts on the world. The first expo was held in London in 1851. Stalls organized by different countries to represent each of the countries are the major point of interest at the world fairs. The advent of the internet has also changed the entire concept of world fairs. The 1996 Internet World Exposition changed the definition of exhibitions and pavilions.
Instead of countries representing pavilions, it was individuals who designed and made their own pavilions. The concept of nationalities was broken down in the Internet World Exposition of 1996. The purposes of world’s fairs have been the introduction of technologies and ideas. However with the advent of the internet, information is widely available for people. The latest technological updates are spread at an increased speed in every medium. From music to politics and space exploration to basketball the latest information is not hard to find.
The purpose of an internet based world fair is to make the information manageable (Schadewaldt, 1979). A new world is constructed with porous borders and shifting of identities. World fairs were also organized to give a vision of the future for the people. Promises of better technology and consumerism have created skepticism amongst people. The 1996 Internet World Exposition has also introduced the dark side of technology. High speed spamming and cars were some of the dark sides of technology on cities and projects.
A unique feature of the Internet World Exposition was that it was built in cyberspace. It was an initiative to expand the transoceanic fiber optic networks. It represented a global population and the meeting place of all peoples and cultures from all over the world. Future world fairs will excite and inspire millions of people. They also will continue to provide a portrayal of the realities of the times. An internet based world fair will definitely allow more people to know about other cultures, scientific advancements and inventions.
The easy accessibility of the internet in many parts of the world will allow people to actively participate and seek entertainment from such fairs. They will find new ways to provide information and inspiration (Schadewaldt, 1979). Some people are of the view that the advent of the internet has made world fairs obsolete. However the nature of the expositions has changed and will change in the future. They are unique because now every person can participate and experience them. Anyone can access the expo site and become part of the global community.
They can be experienced from the computer. The world fair has entered into the electronic age after the 1996 Internet World Exposition. It was based upon the models of past world fairs. It invited individuals to set up their own pavilions. There were no entry fees to enter the world fair. The event was sponsored by major leaders and countries of the world. The fair made an estimated hundred million dollars by sponsorship and approximately six million people visited the main computers. The event featured an interactive program within a person’s mind to be presented in space.
It also featured the famous Kasparov versus computer chess match. Future world expositions will have little impact due to globalization. The impact of the 1867 Paris exposition and Osaka 1970 world fair can never be duplicated. Expositions of the future will be composed of cooperation between governments, corporations and individuals. The true concept of global governance was demonstrated in the 1996 Internet World Exposition (Schurman, 2006). Artificial intelligence would be extensively used in futuristic world fairs.
The importance of artificial intelligence will help people understand intelligence. Also it will help in establishing intelligent systems using a synthetic methodology. Biological systems will be modeled, general principles of intelligence will be explored and artifacts will be designed. Engineers and scientists would find such world expositions beneficial which would allow them to design artificial intelligence systems based on the scientific achievements in robot locomotion research. Future expositions will also focus on the environment and ecosystem.
The 2000 Hanover Expo World Fair focused on humankind and nature. It also focused on developing technologies that would help improve the economic system. Some of the pavilions were made of recycled paper while other pavilions were designed with symbols of nature. World expositions held in the future will try to encourage unity and self esteem by recalling the glories of older expos. They will also try to address the demographics of the world’s population and their important problems. Model urban communities which are affordable and environmentally sustainable will be shown in these expositions.