The Future

These are my thoughts on what I believe could possibly occur in the future through my readings and observation of trends. So what does the future entail?

Faster wireless broadband:
It’s here and it’s now and it will only get faster, cheaper and better. South Korea is currently the nation taking the lead in wireless broadband technology. With so many portable net devices, such as netbooks and mobile phones, people will want to be able to connect online wherever they are. It is definitely a new revenue stream for ISPs and innovative companies like Tomizone, who allow Wi-Fi owners to profit from sharing their online Internet.

Web 3.0?
There currently is no formal definition of Web 3.0 yet. My definition of it, disregarding the technical side of things, is that of the blurring between the terms online and offline. In other words, where every action occurs offline there will be a consequence of that action online and vice versa. It’s all about interconnectivity and the digital home that Bill Gates has been envisioning for a long time. Already we are seeing many online products and services that display such integration between the online and offline world. I, myself, have thought up of some wild ideas that could further blur the lines of being online and offline.

Touch here and touch there:
There will be more implementation of touch screen technology in products. Apple has definitely brought sexy back for touch screens with their iPhone and iPod touch products. Microsoft has also been working on their own touch screen device and many more companies, such as Samsung, have release products that utilise touch screens e.g. tablets, phones, projectors, netbooks. It is just so much more natural for us to interact by touch. The technology is getting better, making touch screens much more accurate. As devices get smaller and screens get larger it just seems touch is the way.

AI taking over:
There is no doubt about it that Artificial Intelligence will take over the world. AI can do something that a human just can’t do i.e. process and analyse large amount of data. It will replace many jobs in the future, be able to translate languages, simulate the stock markets as well as many more things that you’ve seen AI do in sci-fi movies. As storage gets larger, processing becomes faster and not to mention breakthroughs in algorithms AI will only get better.

Smart this and that:
AI makes things smarter. Therefore you will probably see a lot of branding using the word “smart” on products. You got products like smart phones, smart cards and smart car. So what could be next? Maybe a lot of smart home appliances, smart computer, smart mp3 player or possibly smart websites. All these products are making our lives much more easier by remembering our preferences, suggesting things we maybe interested etc.

The super mobile phone:
Currently there are about 3.3 billion mobile phone users. It is becoming something of a necessity making everyone need a mobile phone. You take it with you wherever you go. What we will see is more things being integrated into our mobile phones making it a super phone. We already got features in phones that act as cameras, video players, mp3 players, gaming devices, online surfing and emailing etc. What we will definitely see is more applications thanks to Google’s Android and Apple’s iPhone. But more interestingly our phone can become our credit card and personal ID. So there is no doubt that a lot more things will be packed into our lovable mobile phones.

Breakthroughs in genetics and physics:
I’m always excited about the progresses and breakthroughs in genetics and physics. There are just so many more unknown territories to be discovered in these fields. For example the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) to be activated this year could possibly help discover or debunk the building block of matter. In genetics they have been developing a vaccine to cure cancer. Current results show that the vaccine does destroy the cancer cells however the cancer comes back after a couple of months. But these are definitely promising signs. It is definitely exciting times for our world and humanity.

Nuclear fusion:
I know this may be a very controversial claim but forget about renewable energy. Nuclear fusion is the future and it is what’s going to help end climate change. The governments know it and it is why they are forking out billions of dollars to rush to the moon.

Currently China, Japan, Russia and the US have been planning and working on mining the moon. They all want the precious helium-3 found abundantly on the moon, which will be used to power the nuclear fusion reactors. Currently on earth we don’t have a lot of helium-3 because it is produce from nuclear weapons and from our sun. However because the earth’s atmosphere it blocks out many of the helium-3 wash to us from the sun. But the moon has been gathering helium-3 for a long time now.

Why nuclear fusion? Nuclear fusion produces a lot of power and it does not emit carbon emission and any radioactive waste into the environment. However I’m not saying we should scrap renewable energy for they will always have a place in supporting the base load energy supply in a clean (and in my opinion aesthetic) way.

Electric or hydrogen:
I’m still 50/50 on whether cars will go the electric way or the hydrogen way. If we can get clean energy then both cars will be carbon emission free cars. However it looks like electric and hydrogen cars will be like the repeats of Betamax versus VHS, or more recently Blu-ray versus HD-DVD. I guess it will probably come down to which car can go the fastest and the longest.

Victor Tsen, July 2008

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