What technologies of the next 10 years are most exciting?

  • Thread starter axmls
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I think in 2000 "internet" and 2006 "smartphones" would have been part of the answer.
It's worth keeping in mind that the Internet originated in 1969, under the name of ARPANET under a contract led by the renamed Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA) granted by the US government, connecting the computers of 4 universities (UCLA, Stanford, UCSB, University of Utah). So technically, the backbone of what was to emerge during the 2000s was already laid out as early as 1969.

As far as smartphones were concerned, the very first device created by Research In Motion (RIM), the company that ultimately created the Blackberry (and the company renaming itself Blackberry), was the Inter@ctive Pager 900, a two-way paging system, back in 1996, and which could conceivably be considered the early predecessor to the smartphone. Now looking back when these products emerged, could we have foreseen how big smartphones would have become? Only in hindsight.
Photovoltaics was discovered in 1839. Large-scale usage is not always linked to the discovery/invention.
Internet usage was extremely rare in 1995, still uncommon in 2000, common in 2005 and widespread in 2010. In 2000, the trend was obvious already, so "What technologies of the next 10 years are most exciting? " would have gotten "the internet" as one answer - and that answer was correct.

Same for smartphones 2006 -> 2016, from something expensive and used by a small fraction of the population only to something that many people use every day.
And of course, some technologies are already planned and we can reasonably expect them to be completed around when they're supposed to. One example I mentioned in the original post was 5G, which will certainly be a large step up in our communications and will make it even easier in the long run for the Internet of Things.

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