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...have this wish I wish tonight...

What is the future of technology? Are flying cars and holograms the toys of our children's children?

"Personal networks" and "no" are my answers.

Personal Networks:

I think that the PDA is the premier example of what the future holds for those that can afford it. My vision of the future is a set of descrete devices that share information with each other to allow the user to make the best possible decisions.

Consider the calculator. What if the calculator knew the basic laws of physics and knew how to combine them? If you asked it how to shoot a basket it could tell you exactly how hard and at what angle you needed to throw the ball. But this would require you to tell your calculator all of the relevant environmental variables and then you would need to actually do what it told you. This would not be practical in a pickup game with your buddies.

Now consider what it could do if it knew/could find out where the basket was. Suppose that it also knew which direction and how hard the wind was blowing. Imagine that it could tell you when you were holding the ball at the right angle and correct position. Then, all you would need to do is launch the ball at the velocity perscribed by the calculator.

Imagine the non-basketball application of such a machine. It could be about the size of a PDA and have an array of sensors that interact with the real world. Suppose that it also integrated your cell phone and your music collection. Another step would yeild GPS information and provide for a limited (for safety reasons) system of communication with the systems of others. Include an assortment of medical monitoring devices. Hmm.

You are now a cyborg. Half human. Half machine. You aren't super strong or super fast, but you are super intelligent. Is this that unrealistic? Could it happen? Would it be a welcome change?

One obvious flaw is that this doesn't exist. There exist devices that can do each of these operations, but there doesn't exist one device or a system of devices that can combine this information. The key is that they need to share information. The internal thermometer needs to know how hot/cold it is outside in order to tell the clothes inventory system which clothes you can take off while not getting too cold. The GPS device can let the system know if this "external" temp is a typical outdoors temp or an indoors temp. Separately you could know all of this, but the machine can crunch the numbers for you to tell you that you should keep on your overcoat, despite the fact that you're sweating because you seem to be headed outside where it is snowing. Trival usage, yes, but the point remains.

Another problem is the ethics of such a system. If it were all biological you would just be super smart. Since it is not biological you would be a cheater at any university. What if the system is one that you never remove? Why not test your real world abilities? Why restrict you to your unaided intelligence?

This is not just a musing about the wearable PC. This is a musing about the symbiotic PC, a Personal Network of devices that are all tuned to helping you in whatever you do. The future will be glorious.


Flying cars are impractical and holograms aren't as cool as cheap internet porn. :)
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at 12:55 | Blogger rachel said,

Great post...

I think GPS is far cooler than any internet porn. Period.    

at 22:59 | Blogger Gps Systems said,

Hey, you have a great blog here! I'm definitely going to bookmark you!

I have a gps fleet tracking site/blog. It pretty much covers gps fleet tracking related stuff.

Come and check it out if you get time :-)    

at 00:48 | Anonymous geocaching said,

Hi, As part of a sports related degree, I'm doing some research into some Geocaching related search 'keywords' e.g. 'geocaching'. I've used geocaching to contact people but I need more input. Any suggestions on where to look?

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