We have a built-in obsolescence issue in our brave new world:
Many global challenges point to this one thing.
“Nothing lasts forever.” A truism.
“The wrong things last forever.” Truth.
Why do bumper stickers last longer than the politicians they help elect?
Computers seem to unexpectedly expire at a predetermined future date that often coincides with the next version. Mobile phones seem to stop working when the new ones are released. Cars seem to wear out when the warranty expires. Hot dogs are sold in packs of twelve and buns are sold in packs of eight. Waste fuels new sales when we buy more stuff from our favorite company.
Why does all of our food packaging last longer than the food it encapsulates?
Water bottles last for a zillion years, and if you cap them before tossing them in the trash, you’ve trapped the most precious life giving substance on earth in a polymer tomb, essentially forever.
In a more sustainable tomorrow, our bumper stickers could dissolve in four years (better for future sales if you want to keep promoting the same candidate and better for me, if I decide to buy your used car).
Imagine a computer without a seal that informs you the warranty is invalid, if you break the sticker. Why not allow the consumer to replace a flash drive inside a computer? If all of my software is tied to my “Apple ID” within the App Store, then there should be no compelling business reason why I couldn’t replace a few parts inside and upgrade my laptop forever.