Top Engineers Predict What The World Will Be Like in 2045
The world is going to be vastly different when we’re all 29 years older than we are now. Of course no one can fully predict what things will be like in 2045, but experts at the Pentagon’s research agency are probably some of the best people to ask about technological advances.
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency was launched in 1958 and have since forged some of the biggest military innovations, many of which we’ve been lucky enough to experience as civilians. We can thank them for things such as advanced robotics, GPS, and… the internet.
While everyone else is pretty sure that artificial intelligence, drones and self-driving cars will all be extremely mainstream in 2045, DARPA scientists are thinking bigger. Here’s what 3 researchers have predicted for the (not so far away) future.
Dr. Justin Sanchez, neuroscientist and DARPA’s Biological Technologies Office Director thinks we’ll be able to control things with our mind. “Imagine a world where you could just use your thoughts to control your environment,” Sanchez said. “Think about controlling different aspects of your home just using your brain signals, or maybe communicating with your friends and family just using neural activity from your brain.”
Yikes, hopefully those signals to your friends and family won’t get crossed with your personal shower thoughts. Regardless, Sanchez says DARPA is currently working on neurotechnologies that might make this possible.
Some examples of that kind of technology are already in action, like brain implants controlling prosthetic arms. Even just last week DARPA gave a paralyzed man back his sense of touch with brain implants that gave him the feeling “as if his own hand were being touched,” he said.
Buildings will also be very different than the ones that surround us today according to geologist Stefanie Tompkins, who’s also director of DARPA’s Defense Sciences Office. According to Tompkins we’ll be able to build incredibly strong, yet incredibly lightweight structures. For example, a skyscraper will be made using materials that are strong as steel, but light as carbon fiber. She explains it like this: “In 30 years, I imagine a world where we don’t even recognize the materials that surround us.”
Aerospace engineer and former astronaut Pam Melroy is the deputy director of DARPA’s Tactical Technologies Office and envisions our relationships with machines to be very different by 2045. “I think that we will even begin to see a time when we’re able to simply just talk or even press a button.”
She continued with an even more specific example: “Right now to prepare for landing in an aircraft there’s multiple steps that have to be taken to prepare yourself from navigation, get out of the cruise mode, begin to set up the throttles… put the gear down. All of these steps have to happen in the right sequence.”
Instead of this routine, Melroy thinks aircraft landing will be as easy as three words: “Prepare for landing.” In 30 years a pilot may just need to say three words and the computer will take it from there… if a pilot is even needed at all.