A technological future …2014.04.08
Remember sending handwritten letters by post and playing board games with your family? Nostalgic memories in a world where social networks and smartphones rule our communication and games such as Candy Crush and Angry Birds are our casual time-wasters. With technology evolving so quickly, one might wonder what the world of tomorrow will have in store for our children. RED C have taken on the daring task of giving our predictions on the Top 5 Technologies to watch out for right now, right here!
The Web of Us
Increased concerns over the abuse of personal data by companies, individuals and even foreign Governments will make consumers move away from the “Web of Everything” to the “Web of Us” – a web where we control our own information and who can access and use this information! Consumers will demand internet applications which prevent future employers from accessing compromising college photos or which stop foreign spy agencies from monitoring their views on drug use for medical purposes. Over the past few years, we have seen a surge in private social networks which explain the staggering $19bn paid by Facebook for WhatsApp – a company with just 50 employees and no marketing budget! The demand for privacy and data control will spread beyond social media and consumers will demand clear answers and policies from companies in terms of how their data is treated and protected.
The Web of My Home
We expect to see tech integration in our homes and beyond to a degree which might be difficult to comprehend today. Devices and applications will connect and communicate – often without any involvement from the owner. Our fridge will send a message to our bin that the milk has gone off, the bin will respond by ordering next day bin pick up, anticipating the soon arrival of the gone-off milk. At the same time, the fridge will order new milk to be delivered while checking the owners’ calendar and bank account to ensure we are home to pick up the milk and have money to pay for it. Early signs of this tech integration are evident whereby we can use our smartphones to control our TV and heating systems, and cloud data allowing us to access content from everywhere on any device.
The hottest trends in technology right now are Google Glasses, smart watches and “life-tracking” health armbands giving consumers easy access to a wealth of information and communication options without the need for a non-wearable device. It is estimated that the wearable tech industry will be worth $6bn by 2018. The future will offer even more integrated wearables where the device will be a part of our clothing or even our body! Imagine sports clothes with built in health monitor sensors, children’s clothing with GPS trackers and even chip implants in the skin of your hand allowing you to make payments or unlock your car with a hand swipe.
It came as a surprise to many when Facebook bought virtual reality headset maker Oculus last week for $2bn. Virtual reality is to a large degree seen as a technology for hard core games or advanced training such as surgery or pilot training. Does this mean that Facebook is now planning to target hard core gamers with a fun new playtime activity? Perhaps – but Mark Zuckerberg’s vision goes well beyond this as highlighted on his own blog: “Imagine enjoying a court side seat at a game, studying in a classroom of students and teachers all over the world or consulting with a doctor face-to-face — just by putting on goggles in your home. This is really a new communication platform. By feeling truly present, you can share unbounded spaces and experiences with the people in your life. Imagine sharing not just moments with your friends online, but entire experiences and adventures”. He continues: “Virtual reality was once the dream of science fiction. But the internet was also once a dream, and so were computers and smartphones”. No doubt will hear more about virtual reality in the future!
Excited about 3D printing? Well, even before proper commercialisation of the 3D printing technology, scientists have moved forward and are now experimenting with 4D printing technology. The fourth dimension opens up for using adaptive, composite materials which can be reshaped after their first initial 3D printing. Whether 3D or 4D – this technology will allow consumers to produce food items, toys, clothes and even electronic devices in the comfort of their home and fully tailored to their preferred style/design. Imagine not only printing your own heart-shaped chocolates but a new mobile phone or a new suit.
Are you not entertained?
— Maximus in Gladiator
Well, then please disregard all of the above and check out this video instead!
10 future technologies that will probably kill us all