Saturday, December 25, 2010

IBM’s crystal ball Tech Predictions

Big Blue continued its annual tradition and released technology predictions after surveying its 3,000 researchers to find five ideas expected to take root within five years. The list includes (not in order of my preference though!)

  1. Air-powered batteries – Rechargeable batteries that could use the air we breathe to react with energy-dense metal, eliminating a key inhibitor to longer lasting batteries.

  2. 3D-enabled Smartphone – Will use special cameras that could be placed in cell phones in order to enable real-time video chat with a 3D hologram of friends and family

  3. Adaptive traffic systems –Computer programs will use algorithms and real-time traffic information, traveler patterns and behavior to provide more dynamic travel safety and route information to travelers. Thereby avoiding traffic jams and shortening the commute time.

  4. Citizen scientists – Technology that will allow communicating environmental information (generated by sensors in cars and phones) to help fight global warming, save endangered species or track invasive plants or animals that threaten ecosystems around the world

  5. Cities powered by the heat thrown off by computer servers – IBM predicts to efficiently recycle the thermal energy from data centers to provide hot water for an office or houses using novel on-chip water-cooling systems developed by IBM.

Like we have seen in the past not all Big Blue predictions pan out as expected for example cell phones reading our minds by 2012, instant speech translation etc are still years away from reality.

I personally like IBM releasing its technology predictions in last few days of 2010 when everyone else is just taking about the year that went by (viz. person of the year 2010, gadget of the year 2010 etc)


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