Technology is continuously advancing as readers of The Tech Portal know all too well, and we have seen some truly fantastic developments. This happens week in and week out and only a few weeks ago, we reported on Facebook hitting 2 billion in monthly active users and Amazon making more plans to use delivery drones after patenting a futuristic-looking beehive delivery drone tower. “The Brave New World” is here — to borrow the title of Aldous Huxley’s famous 1930s novel — and moving at a fast pace.
What better time then, to look at some of the top advances over the last 10 years in a bid to take stock. This is just a few of our highlights…
We start with wearable technology, a market that is expected to grow to over $4 billion in 2017 thanks to smartwatches from the likes of Apple, LG, Samsung, Motorola and Huawei et al. leading the way. Then we have fitness-tracking brands, think Fitbit, Misfit Ray, and Lumo Run, and Smart Glasses, although that particular form of wearable tech is still very much a work in progress. And while there are many on the market – prices are wide ranging, from $130 to upwards of $2,000.
Smart glasses are, of course, a form of AR — Augmented Reality — and it leads nicely into our second highlight: Virtual Reality.
Virtual Reality has many uses and has been used in fields as far apart as space to medical training to military and flight simulators.
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It also has a large scope and potential for gaming, too, of course. Granted, take-up of the current devices by consumers has been somewhat limited, but it is amazing to think how far the games industry and technology has come from, for example, basic mechanical slot machines of the 19th century to home computers by the 1980s, and now VR (and AR). It is enough to get technologists extremely excited.
Our third pick is the advent of self-driving or autonomous cars, something that’s no longer the preserve or domain of traditional car manufacturers, with tech companies like Apple and Google challenging the likes of Volvo, BMW, and Ford, etc., etc.
We already have tech that can help us today with cars — be it assisted braking or lane keep assist/park assist — and some believe that fully autonomous cars could be here in less than 10 years.
Another is the use of reusable rockets in space travel with Space X leading the way and successfully landing an orbital rocket at the end of 2015. Space X has made many since then — despite challenges along the way — and earlier this year, they launched and landed a used rocket for the very first time.
Is Mars in sight? Maybe…
Our final pick is the CERN (the European Organization for Nuclear Research) operated Large Hadron Collider (LHC), the most expensive scientific instrument ever built, costing over $4 billion. Its mission, in a nutshell, is to test different laws of physics and just recently it found a new baryon particle — Xi cc.
That’s our six and while by no means meant to be conclusive — in many respects we have just scratched the surface — it shows just a few of the technological leaps made over the last decade. “A Brave New World,” indeed. Who knows what the next 10 years will bring.