Eventually, one day, if evolution and sci-fi movies are anything to go by, we will be communicating telepathically. So there is a scenario where grandparents will be saying, sorry, I mean thinking, “You kids have it easy. In my day we had things called words, and there were rules in how to use them called grammar.”
When you think about it, it makes sense. We won’t be beaming each other sentences, carefully double spaced for easy reading. We won’t have mental cartoon images complete with thought bubbles.
Perhaps we will beam each other the equivalent of “talking” where there is a virtual conversation but there won’t be any written words or other visualisation of the building blocks of speech.
If we do evolve to communicate in images I hope the ability to mentally convey emotion develops hand in hand. So much of the true intention of our communication is conveyed through our choice of words and the way we say them (tone, pitch, even facial expression).
I can’t help but think we will be worse off.