In 2009 (a bit dated, i know) Dr. Michio Kaku spoke in front of a crowd at Queensboro Community College, NY about what he thinks the future will be like by 2030. Kaku made very colorful points and with an added sense of humor, for an entertaining discussion. Besides being a scholar himself, Kaku, has spoken with over 300 physicists–thereby giving him a an idea of where our society is headed, technically speaking. I’d like to highlight some of his points.
He first discusses how communication will soon be improved with optic web interfaces begininning with eye glasses and then contact lenses. To me, this idea sounds horrible; I’m betting that there will be exposure to digital advertising. Kaku never touched on that point, however focussing on speeding our ways of gathering information. This idea is already happening.
Kaku, then spoke of disposable computers. The computers are disposable, or at least more commoditized, because we’ll have chips that we’ll carry information, wherever we go. He believes that we’ll have a filing systems worth of information on these chips. The computers just act as the interface for these chips. My only question would be, why would we need all of these computers when the information and IT is moving to the cloud?
The idea of “Smart Wallpaper” was interesting. Kaku claims that we’ll be living in a world where the walls are of digital interfaces, ultimately enhancing communication. The wallpapers will make “touching” attainable. Instead of eating a dinner by yourself, you’ll be able to have video conferences with friends, or a baby sitter at all times within your house. That idea sounds helpful, but can easily be hacked, and un-warranted privacy exposure will ensue.
The next big idea that we’re already working on is GPS drivers. Already in production (Google)
Medically, our society is going to change significantly in 2 ways, for preventative analysis. Our health and ancestral health information will be available wherever we go. Kaku discusses “Smart Toilets.” This is an idea that is completely new to me and I definitely think it would beneficial, although just like “Smart Wallpaper,” privacy could possibly be hacked. The toilets would analyze our feces on a daily basis, alerting doctors if in case something was wrong. The toilets along with “Smart Glass,” could analyze our proteins, genes and DNA. “Smart Glass” would work by blowing on the glass; the glass would then capture either bacteria or pieces of skin from our mouth, to analyze.
Kaku, speaks of a world where organs will be genetically created in labs (already happening). He also claims that doctors will conduct surgery with 3D video and imaging.
Kaku then speaks on “Artificial Intelligence”. He said not to worry about a “Judgement Day [Terminator]” ending. Robots are so far away from having any conscious personality, where bad behavior is the outcome. He said that if they showed any signs of this evil trait, that we’d have more than enough time to turn the robots off.
Kaku later goes into speaking about “Invisibility”, “Teleportation” and “Telepathy.” Regarding teleportation, he says that it’s basically impossible. In order to teleport, we have to dissolve and then reconstruct the object or organism. It essentially would be creating a new you. Telepathy is now possible, however it’s just the beginning. He gave an example of a paralyzed victim that is able to communicate with the web. It’s our first direct link between mind and computer.
He says that we’ll have the ability to record dreams. He gave an example from a Kyoto study that was able to map images from the brain, via MRI scan to computer. The subject had his/her sight recorded via this extraction method and the object mapped out was a horseshoe. This same technology may be able to assist government agencies wit lie detector tests.
Later in the discussion he speaks of the “far away” future. He talks about “Interstellar Travel,” via NASA starships. He also discusses “Blackholes” and “Time Machines.” One thing that interested me was his discussion on “The 4 types of civilizations”. He claims that we’ll be a Type 1 civilization in 100 years. Meaning, that one government will rule the world. And not to veer off subject, but Kaku is a controversial figure with conspiracy theorists. The type 1 civilization comment strikes an intriguing fact of Kaku’s “NWO affiliation.”
All in all, it was an insightful discussion. He’s a brilliant man and a bit cocky at times, but this presentation was filled with many new ideas that gives listeners some sense of what direction technology will bring us.