Top futurist, Ray Kurzweil, predicts how technology will change humanity by 2020

By | December 16, 2009 incredible force — information technology that moves faster, then faster, then faster still — will power changes in every imaginable realm over the next decade.

Start with the basics. You’ve no doubt noticed that electronic gadgets are getting smaller and smaller; the iPod Shuffle holds 1,000 songs and weighs 0.38 ounces. Your phone is smaller than it was a few years ago and can do much more. By 2020, memory devices will be integrated into our clothing. And the very idea of a “smart phone” will begin to change. Rather than looking at a tiny screen, our glasses will beam images directly to our retinas, creating a high resolution virtual display that hovers in air.

That virtual display will be able to take over our entire visual field of view, putting us in a three-dimensional full immersion virtual reality environment. We’ll watch movies virtually and read virtual books. A lot of our personal and business meetings will take place in these 3D virtual worlds. The design of new virtual environments will be an art form. We’ll even have ways to touch one another virtually. …

Besides 1) Virtual Reality integration, Kurzweil goes on to predict: 2) technologies to completely replace fossil fuels. 3) means to program our biology away from disease and aging. “By 2030, we will have made major strides in our ability to remain alive and healthy – and young – for very long periods of time.” and 4) cars with the intelligence to avoid accidents.

I already have the free Yelp virtual reality app which shows reviews and locations of various businesses. Great fun!

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