SAN FRANCISCO, April 12 — Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg on Tuesday laid out an ambitious 10-year plan to connect the world’s 7 billion people via his company’s social media network.
The Facebook chief executive, speaking at the F8 Developers conference Tuesday,submitted a vision of the future in which everyone on the planet will have use of the networking site — a lofty goal, considering only about half the world’s population currently has Internet access.
“We are one global community,” Zuckerberg told an audience at San Francisco’s Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture. “Whether we are welcoming a refugee fleeing war or an immigrant seeking opportunity, coming together to fight a global disease like Ebola or to address climate change.”
Zuckerberg used the words “hope” and “optimism” in describing his vision, while shunning those who try to divide and separate.
“It takes courage to choose hope over fear,” he said.
One of the projects the social network pioneer touched on was the production of a solar-powered Internet plane that beams connectivity to the ground. Other themes included greater use of artificial intelligence and virtual reality.
Artificial intelligence, in fact, is already being put to greater use in Facebook’s new Messenger Platform, which Zuckerberg announced Tuesday. The hope, he said, is to someday enable “chatbots” to facilitate better communication on the platform.
The theme of Zuckerberg’s keynote address was, “give everyone the power to share anything with anyone,” but it came off at times as somewhat political.
“As I look around the world, I’m starting to see people and nations turning inward, against the idea of a connected world and a global community,” Zuckerberg said. “I hear fearful voices calling for building walls and distancing people they label as ‘others.’ I hear them calling for blocking free expression, for slowing immigration, for reducing trade, and in some cases even for cutting access to the internet.”
After delivering the keynote, Zuckerberg took to his own Facebook page to expand on his philosophies.