Limitless Possibilities of Technology Chang Lor

Landing in the top four most innovative countries in the world, the United States is a country built and established on innovation. Technological innovation may be defined in many ways, depending on the businesses’ view on innovation. One general definition of technological innovation is a new or improved product or service involving research and development to better the use for an an individual, group, or whole. Although the United States is not ranked number one in innovation, this western culture does provide some of the highest user in technology for business, education, and leisure. With the high consumption of technology, the demand for newer, better products or services are pressured to keep advancing.

Many technological innovations in the past have been invented for easing one’s way of life, such as: the microwave oven, computer, smoke detector, cellular phones, MRI, GPS, printing press, automobile, electric lights, telephone, airplane, radio, television, and anesthesia. These discoveries push the desire to improve or create products for the future. As technology continues to advance in the 21st century, humans begin to realize that there are limitless possibilities to the discoveries and innovations of technology. Additionally, many technologies that consumers use regularly have been an innovation of a previous technology. Some of these current technologies include smartphones, social media, Bluetooth, 4G, 3D printing, drones, and wearable devices. Noticeably, this list is a small portion of all the technological innovation that has been successfully discovered and used in modern time. Current technology will theoretically be the basis of future technological innovations and advancements. Scientists and researchers are aware of the continuous advancements that can occur within current technologies. Presently, there are innovative products and services that are gradually undergoing improvements. Some of these progressive technological innovations include, but are not limited to, 5G, autonomous vehicles, bio printing, hologram, solar roadways, and flexible displays. These mentioned products and services are currently in their trial phase where tests and prototypes are created and practiced in a real setting to ensure safety and usability.

Many individuals have seen scientific fiction films or movies where technology becomes so advanced that it turns out to be a norm in the society. In some countries, these sci-fi technologies have become a reality, and those that are not fully developed yet may possibly be developed in the future. The innovation of technology has also been a source for discovering medicinal solutions to many diseases and illnesses, which is extremely necessary. However, the future of technology involves everything around us, whether that is developing products or services to target pollution, entertainment, exploration, education, transportation, leisure, or communication. The demand for technological innovation continues to dominate the market for consumer needs. Although current improvements and new technologies are being developed, there are many innovations in the near, or far, future to be thinking of. A glimpse at unlimited possibilities within technology includes: artificial Intelligence for highly-intelligent, automated assistance in daily activities or production; smart clothing to interact with wearers on body temperature control and further user preference; flying cars for ease of transportation and an alternative to expensive flights; RFID chips for instant purchases by e-payment or identification of individuals; cyborgs, combining AI and a living being to generate super-intelligence and bodily functions; yottabyte, which equals one trillion terabytes, to allow users to store mass amount of data; ingestible robots to perform medical procedures internally on a living being; optogenetics to control brain circuits or restart failed neurons to cure terminal illnesses; biomimetic materials to create energy-efficient buildings and materials to battle pollution and increase carbon footprint; geoengineering to battle climate change by limiting CO2 in the air; undersea cities to allow inhabitation below sea level; autonomous trucks to self-drive products or materials in elongated distances; jet packs as an alternative for individualized transportation; sensible prosthetics to allow users to feel with prosthetic materials; TALOS, an “Iron Man” suit, for military purposes; 3D printed food to battle food shortage in certain areas; hover boards as an advancement of the Segway; 3D gaming for realistic 1st person videogames; solar energy to replace electricity and fuel; cloaking to allow camouflage; delivery drones for quick shipment; dream linking to allow duo dreams; active contact lenses to integrate user with digital content.

Perceptibly, some of these aforementioned technological innovations have been prototyped and experimented upon, but have yet to be successfully implemented in a real-world setting. However, readers can acknowledge the fact that technology has no limitations and will continue to develop. As Alan Kay, an American computer scientist, states it, “The best way to predict the future is to invent it.” The 20th century introduced many technological innovations that has shaped the lives of many individuals. Ray Kurzwell’s “The Law of Accelerating Returns” indicate that technological advancements double every decade. Yet, Kurzwell also stated that within the 21st century, it will have seemed that we have technologically progressed through 20,000 years instead of 100 years. We, the individuals in this modern age, are 17 years into the 21st century and have already built upon past technologies and proactively visualized future technologies by running prototypes. The future of technology is unpredictable, but persistency encourages individuals to continue developing.

The adaptation to technology continues to rise each year in America. A Pew Research in January of 2017 found that 88% of American adults, 18 years and older, uses the internet, 77% owns a smartphone, 73% has broadband, 69% uses social media sites, and 51% owns a tablet. Over half of Americans own at least one device relating to technology, which increases the demand for more innovation. There are no accurate predictions to when these technologies will be fully functional in the public. However, the developments and investments are underway for these products and services that may change the course of history. These limitless predictions on technology may soon be a reality as we progress onward to the 21st century.

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