Predictions five years from now

The following are excerpted from
the British Telecom Technology Timeline (information
was compiled by Ian Neild and Ian Pearson from
worldwide sci-tech reports in 2005):

  • Highest-earning celebrity is
    synthetic
  • Dolls come with a personality
    chip and full sensory input
  • 25 percent of TV celebrities are
    synthetic
  • Expert systems surpass average
    human learning and logic abilities
  • Computer agents start being
    thought of as colleagues instead of tools
  • Autonomous AI sales staff units
    become AI stalkers
  • First multi-celled organism
    assembled from scratch
  • Self-aware machine
    intelligence
  • Computer-enhanced
    dreaming
  • Thought-recognition used in
    sleep enhancement
  • High-speed civil transport
    supersonic jet, 300 passengers, 1,500 mph
  • GPS and engine-management
    systems linked to limit speed automatically
  • Paper and coins largely replaced
    by electronic cash
  • Most tickets electronic
  • Personal taxation at point of
    sale
  • Automatic dialing from smart
    business cards
  • Augmented-reality overlays used
    in stores
  • Reverse auctions in personal
    shopping devices (nearby stores bid to provide items
    on shopping list)
  • Hotel in orbit
  • Scalable AI as major military
    threat
  • Positive clean ID required for
    access to many places
  • Terrorist use of genetic
    modification to pollute crops and damage
    economy
  • Most fighters and bombers flown
    remotely
  • Use of network resonance as
    security threat
  • Ambient intelligence detection
    of minor crimes & anti-social behavior
  • Identity theft forces all
    transactions to use biometrics
  • Domestic augmented-reality used
    to give virtual makeovers
  • Biometric ID required for every
    phone call
  • Use of mutant insects for attack
    purposes
  • Robot dance tutors
  • Nanowalkers, nanoworms,
    nanofish
  • Mechanical intelligence using
    MEMS and NEMS
  • Supercomputers with speed
    exceeding 1 ExaFLOPS
  • DNA computer
  • Use of bacteria for processing
    and storage
  • Desktop computer as fast as
    human brain
  • Use of polymer gels for
    information processing
  • Kitchen rage caused by
    electronic gadgets
  • Electronic implant equivalent to
    Botox
  • Use of virtual-reality scenes in
    household rooms as decor
  • Replacement of people leads to
    anti-technology subculture
  • Most electronic toys are
    hybrids, with half on internet
  • Anti-noise technology built into
    homes
  • Active wallpaper responds to
    inhabitants' moods, etc.
  • Neighborhood video-surveillance
    networks
  • Washing machine aware of
    contents and selects cycle
  • Augmented-reality offices used
    in telework centers
  • Palm-top printing puts buttons
    on skin
  • Glasses-based computer displays
    dominate in the office
  • Electronic responses can be
    automated based on conversational inference
  • Windows with coatings to
    re-direct sunlight
  • Nanotechnology toys
  • Paper money replaced by smart
    media
  • Spread of nomadic information
    companies leads to global taxation
  • Academic learning is argued to
    be unnecessary in the age of smart machines
  • Integrated taxation in all
    transactions
  • Return-to-sender viruses,
    corporate counterattacks
  • Nano devices roaming within
    blood vessels under own power
  • Use of humans' own tissues
    to grow replacement organs
  • Direct electronic pleasure
    production
  • Context-sensitive
    cyber-drugs
  • Electronic stimulation of brain
    sensations as recreational substitute for
    drugs
  • Some implants seen as status
    symbols
  • Gene-gel stimulation of
    re-growth of natural teeth on demand
  • Retina regeneration using fetal
    retinal cell injection
  • Emotion logging and
    recording
  • Emotionally specific
    drugs
  • Micro-fluidic chips used for
    gene sequencing in every GP surgery
  • Self-certification for
    prescriptions using electronic diagnostics
  • Outpatients at home – remote
    tele-medical consultations
  • Genetic links of 90 percent of
    diseases identified
  • Individual's genome part of
    their medical record
  • Synthetic organs created by
    printing layers of cells
  • Synthetic viruses created
  • Sensory augmentation using
    sensory implants, nanoparticles, etc.
  • Use of stem cells to treat human
    brain after strokes or accidents
  • Gene therapy generates new hair
    cells in humans
  • Sensory implants allow direct
    sensing of cyberspace entities
  • Robotic cleaners in
    hospitals
  • Biometrics and medical tests
    linked to benefits and disability allowance