The year 2015 is getting close. Why is it a significant year? The iconic eighties film Back to the Future II was set in that year and it predicted that we would all be driving flying cars.
Technology has been advancing in ways we couldn’t have even fathomed 30 years ago, but we still don’t have flying cars! Here are six more technologies I think someone should have invented by now:
1. Wallet size mobile phone
We need to take the smartphone to the next level by continuing the trend of making everything smaller than we ever thought possible. I want a mobile phone the size of a credit card that I put into my wallet.
Now, don’t get the idea I would have a developer sacrifice functionality for space efficiency – I would include a hologram screen on the phone à la Minority Report. Rather than reading e-mails and texts on a screen, the information scrolls across a small projected screen.
2. Smart Watch
I love spy series and spook films – they always have these really awesome gadgets that can break heavy encryption in ten seconds and do really useful things like read your mind…
I should be able to whisper stealthily into my watch and have it call a friend, record a conversation for legal posterity at the tap of a button, or get it to give me directions to the nearest pizza joint at a pinch.
Maybe the watch doesn’t have to be that clever…
3. Unbreakable tablet
I’m very precious about my iPad. It cost a lot of money and if anything like what I’ve seen on iPhone screens happens to my tablet, I’ll never come back from that.
We have plenty of unbreakable things: titanium, bulletproof glass, the human spirit… Why can’t someone figure out how to get images and text to play on one of them that responds to the human touch?
While we’re at it, I think it should be flexible, too. Then I can just roll it up and put it in my backpack, thrash it around in my locker and not have to worry. Technology is supposed to make everything more convenient, after all.
4. Unifying displays
I have a smart phone, a tablet, a laptop, a desktop and a television. Wouldn’t be great if we could just arrange a few of them together and end up with one large screen?
Not only would we get to play Tetris with our electronics when we want to read or watch something and look at photos, but it would also allow us to increase the size of all our content without plugging it in to annoying projectors and SMART boards. A cross-platform system (Android, Apple, and Blackberry) capability, may just be a pipe dream but it would be awfully convenient.
5. Melody Transcriber
Software already exists that can transcribe notes from an instrument onto sheet music – but what about people who haven’t learned to play instruments?
There exist people who are musically gifted, but haven’t learned to play the piano or violin. They can hum a tune or sing like an angel, but are unable to communicate with the musically-educated masses.
I should be able to hum into a microphone and have it come out in sheet music that someone who reads music can play. It would also be pretty cool to develop an entire orchestral score just from humming…
6. Tactile touch screen
We have touch screen mobile phones, but not tactile ones. It would be fantastic if every icon on my phone had a different feeling on my fingers. That way, I wouldn’t have to scroll through the entire menu and risk getting caught at work meetings when I peek to see if I’m sending a text to the right person.
This isn’t completely selfish. Technology like this that provides tactile feedback would also make it easier for visually impaired users to use cell phones.