Manuel Fernando Aranda Romero Future predictions
By 2019 Bionic eyes with high resolutionare commercially available Following years of trials, high resolution bionic eyes are becoming available for persons with degenerative vision loss. The first prototypes of this technology were somewhat crude and pixelated, with less than 100 dots of resolution. However, these new versions provide over 1000 dots, allowing the patient to recognize faces and read large print.* Bionic eyes continue to gain in sophistication over subsequent decades, making rapid progress in resolution and visual quality. Fully artificial eyes are eventually developed that can actually provide better vision than normal eyes. This leads even healthy people to "upgrade" their sight.
By 2020-2035 the world will gothrough a World energy crisis Throughout this period, the world is thrown into turmoil as demand for oil begins to greatly exceed the supply - crippling many economies and triggering widespread social unrest.* There are major conflicts in Africa and the Middle East, where millions die from starvation, war and civil disruption. Many countries in the West experience a decline in living standards - with oil rationing and conservation measures introduced by governments and substantial reductions in travel, tourism and aviation. The crisis plays out for nearly two decades, gradually being resolved by a switch to renewable energy and alternative fuel technologies. The transition is by no means a smooth one, however. It requires nothing less than an all-out Manhattan Project on a global scale. By 2035, the geopolitical map of the Middle East is unrecognisable, while China has reaped enormous political and economic gains from the US.
By 2020 the internet use will reach5 billion world-wide The number of Internet users has now reached almost 5 billion – equivalent to the entire worlds population in 1987. This compares with 1.7 billion users in 2010 and only 360 million in 2000.* Vast numbers of people in developing countries now have access to the web, thanks to a combination of plummeting costs and exponential technology improvements. This includes laptops, smartphones and tablet devices that can be bought for only a few tens of dollars, together with explosive growth in mobile networks. Even some of the most remote populations on Earth can take advantage of the web, thanks to the infrastructure now in place.
By 2020 5G will make “Text-by-thinking”possible. In addition to 5G, phones are becoming available with the option of texting by thought power alone.* This is achieved by a sensor- mounted headset worn by the user. The device contains brain- machine interface technology which analyses brain waves, converts them into digital signals and displays the resulting letters on-screen.* Some of the higher end models feature glasses or visors, with displays built into the lenses. This allows completely hands-free texting, effectively creating a form of virtual telepathy. The process is rather slow at this stage - requiring a high degree of mental concentration. It is more of a novelty for now. However, advances in coming years will enable smooth and fast interactions, revolutionising the world of communication.
By 2022 Deafness will be fully curable Recent advances in stem cell research have provided a method of regenerating sensory cells within the inner ear. Humans are born with 30,000 cochlear and vestibular hair cells per ear. Unlike many animal species, they are unable to regenerate these when they are damaged. However, experiments with mice showed that it was possible to induce stem cells - as well as reprogrammed fibroblasts - into creating enough replacement hair cells to fully restore hearing. This process was then replicated in people.* Using the patients own skin as a source of stem cells means that the replacements are a perfect genetic match for their body, avoiding issues of immune rejection. This form of therapy also enables a variety of other ailments to be treated, such as balance disorders and tinnitus.
By 2023 a permanent cure tomigraine will be available. Migraine is a leading cause of disability, affecting one in five people worldwide. This debilitating condition is characterized by severe headaches, nausea, vomiting, photophobia (increased sensitivity to light), and phonophobia (increased sensitivity to sound). Approximately half of those affected have such severe attacks that they cannot function normally in their day-to- day life. In 2010, scientists discovered a genetic defect linked to this condition, which provided a target for new treatments. After years of clinical trials, a drug is now available that corrects the faulty gene permanently.
By 2023 Gorillas will go extinct inCentral Africa Rampant and uncontrolled poaching, together with large-scale deforestation, agriculture, mining, pollution, disease and militia operations have led to the terminal decline of gorilla populations.* Only those in captivity now remain.
By 2025-2030 Wild Rhinos will goextinct Rhinos are one of the largest remaining megafauna - a class of giant animals that were common in the last ice age.*Of the five main species of rhino, the white rhinoceros is the heaviest, with adults weighing 3,500 kg (7,700 lb) and reaching a head-to-body length of 4.6 m (15 ft). Because of their size, rhinos have few natural predators other than humans. Alongside the mammoth, woolly rhinos became numerous during the Last Glacial Maximum (20-25,000 years ago), but were eventually hunted to extinction by early man. In modern times, the remaining species have declined even more rapidly. The black rhino, for example, fell in numbers from 70,000 in the late 1960s to only 3,600 in 2004.* A subspecies - the West African black rhino - was declared extinct in 2011, while the Javan rhino died out in Vietnam the same year.
The early 21st century witnessed an alarming upward trend in poaching. By 2012, more rhinos were being killed in South Africa during a single week than were killed in a whole year a decade previously. Fetching a street value of £40,000 a kilo, rhino horn was becoming even more valuable than gold, due to the misguided perception that it cured cancer. It was also popular in some cultures as a form of jewellery. Organised crime had become involved, with gangs now using hi-tech equipment for industrial-scale killing. Despite conservation efforts, the situation continued to worsen. By the late 2020s, the last remaining rhinos are disappearing from the wild.* Only a handful remain in captivity. It is doubtful that any viable breeding population can be restored anytime soon, if ever.
By 2024 Petabyte Storage systemwill be available. Data storage devices are continuing to grow exponentially, with capacities doubling every year. Nanotechnology is enabling truly vast quantities of information to be stored. A petabyte is 1000 terabytes, or one million gigabytes. Secure digital and microSD cards have disappeared by now, replaced by an even smaller form-factor.
By 2029 Human-Like AI will be a reality A major milestone is reached in the field of AI this year, as a computer passes the Turing Test for the first time.**This test is conducted by a human judge who is made to engage in a natural language conversation with one human and one machine, each of which tries to appear human. The participants are placed in isolated locations. Information technology has seen exponential growth for many decades. This has created vast improvements in memory, processing power, software algorithms, voice recognition and overall machine intelligence. It has now reached the stage where an independent judge is literally unable to tell which is the real human and which is not.*Answers to certain "obscure" questions posed by the judge may appear childlike or stupid from the AI - but they are humanlike nonetheless.*