Where This Meets That
A year ago, I posted “The Future Today”, a discussion about our ever-increasing rate of technological advancement. I mentioned then that our computing power is increasing exponentially, doubling roughly every 18 months, according to Moore’s law.
Theoretical physicist and author Michio Kaku notes that, because of this consistent rate of advance, we can roughly predict not only what capabilities we will gain but also when, according to the laws of physics, we will exhaust the limits of our current silicon microchip. In his 1997 book Visions, he estimates that we must shift to a different computer medium around the year 2,020.
Our candidates to replace silicon are numerous and fascinating enough in their own right (including optical, holographic, genetic, and even quantum computers) but are beyond the scope of this new series of posts. What I’m interested in here are the possibilities that lie within our reach before Kaku’s projected silicon horizon.
Emerging technologies are fascinating to me, so I thought it would be fun to kick off a series of posts that visualize our world in the year 2,020. What technologies will we use in all areas of life, from our homes and schools to our military and media to our transportation and recreation just a few short but profoundly revolutionary years from now?
Over the coming weeks, I will peek through the portal of the next eight years. While I do so, I ask you to remember that our world is changing faster than ever before, due to the exponential rate of technological advance. Imagine this: at present rate, according to Moore’s law, by 2,020, our computing power will be over forty times what it is today, and what we have today is greater than in all of history combined. Therefore, some of what I suggest may seem pretty far out or at least aggressively forecast. However, I will say in advance that many ideas I will present already exist in some form in labs, others in writings of credible “futurists”, and yet others will come from my own musings (which, in all likelihood, also fall into the first two categories).
It should be an eye- and mind-opening exercise, so I hope you’ll follow along and add your thoughts as we go . . . to 2020!