We all love tech, and today the digital economy is the economy. Every aspect of the economy, and of our lives has been changed by the advent of new technologies over the last century, with progress having accelerated in recent decades toward what some anticipate will become an exponential trend.
Technology that once seemed far-fetched is now ubiquitous and progress shows no signs of slowing. So, what’s next? From flying cars to 3D printed organs, here’s a look at some of the most exciting new tech innovations in the works that could change the world.
Solar power windows
Generating energy sustainably is increasingly important both from a moral and business perspective. Solar has a big role to play in this however, solar panels at present are often ugly and inconvenient. This is why they’re usually limited to rooftops and remote fields, but it doesn’t have to be this way.
Researchers have developed transparent solar glass. This glass looks just like normal glass and produces 50 times as much energy as rooftop solar panels. In the future, it could even be used to power electric vehicles.
Traffic avoiding public transport
Raised buses and travel pods could see public transport become quicker and more efficient than taking a personal car. Already we’ve seen a bus that was conceptualised in China that sits above cars, “straddling” them, and allowing traffic jams to be bypassed.
More recently, the company Dahir Insaat has developed a futuristic Gyroscopic Transportation System, which consists of large pods that can travel alongside cars or raise above them when the road gets too congested. These are particularly exciting as, while they are definitely futuristic, they’re designed to fit into already established cities and infrastructure.
Colour changing car
Have you ever wanted to change the colour of your car? What if you could do it at the press of a button? Soon, this may be more commonplace than you imagine.
BMW recently presented a car called the IX that can change from black to white using a special type of paint. While this maybe doesn’t seem the most useful innovation, and is currently limited to black and white, this is a promising and fascinating technology that could make customisation an almost instant affair.
Back to the Future predicted we would have flying cars by now but they remain unrealised. However, they may be closer than you think.
Several companies have produced flying car prototypes and the race is on to bring the first one to market. Last year in June a car called the Aircar completed a 35 minute flight between two airports in Slovakia, earning it an “air worthiness” certification. It’s still not quite how we imagined in the movies… but it’s looking like flying cars could be a very real and very soon possibility!
3D printing is one of the most versatile innovations of recent times and is already widely used.
3D printing can be used to make almost anything; cars, clothes, gadgets – even food. And, recently, there has even been talk about 3D printed organs. By using material already matched to a patient’s DNA to print a new organ, this could make the need for organ donation totally obsolete.
There are no limits as to what could potentially be made with 3D printing. While it may seem small, an uptick in 3D printing could possibly be one of the biggest changes we see in the future.
What technologies are you excited to see realised over coming years? Let me know in the comments below.