Showing posts with label MIT. Show all posts
Showing posts with label MIT. Show all posts

Monday, February 23, 2015

Convergence: The Inevitability Factor

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One of my favorite things to do for fun as well as work is watch TED Talks. Although I am a YouTube junkie, I have to say that TED has had some of the most stimulating, enjoyable "talks" on a variety of extremely interesting topics that I have ever had the pleasure of experiencing.

This morning, about 3 a.m., I couldn't sleep as the cold and sore throat my wife had has finally made its way to my side of the bed. So I got up for a drink of water and a few minutes of computer time, which will end up to be hours as I'm working on a writing project for a well known national security company.

While in my office, I pulled up TED and watched an extremely interesting video presentation by Pranav Mistry (India) called The thrilling potential of SixthSense technology. I have not figured out how to stream video from TED, as I commonly do in conjunction with other video platforms, so you'll have to go to the TED website to watch it, but please allow me to have a few minutes of your time in which to share with you a little bit about this video, the man behind it, and his invention.

Pranav Mistry is an inventor, but even more, he's a visionary in every sense of the word. I would put him in the category of the late Steve Jobs who founded and propelled Apple into stardom. He was 28 at the time of his TED Talk, which was in 2009.

Mistry, who was practicing his wizardry at MIT at the time he made this video, invented a computer-based system that is mobile, will interact with the gestures and objects in the environment, as well as project and connect intent between digital and the real world. Mistry calls his invention SixthSense, "a wearable gestural interface."

According to Mistry, his intent was to bring the physical and digital worlds together in as intimate a manner as possible. Because people wear his invention, they can take it with them anywhere they want. I'd call this mobile computing at its best. But even more so, his invention solves several problems at the same time, which seems both efficient and sensible on its face.

First, it allows us to combine our laptop, camera, modem, cell phone, and any number of other items into a single, cohesive system. In a word, it lightens our load which can be extremely helpful to some. Secondly, it keeps us in contact with our email, cell phone, text messages, as well as our computer files and all the functionality inherent in a PC.

The Inevitability Factor
As a futurist myself, I see patterns in society and our technologies. Not only do I see patterns, but I see trends and I see something I like to call inevitability. Here's the inevitability where it relates to human-kind and our digital infatuation with technology:

One day in the future human kind has a rendezvous with these technologies as the various computerized gadgets we now commonly use migrate into the human body.

Where some might call this a marriage in heaven, others would call this convergence the work of the devil. I'm certain the truth lies somewhere between the two extremes. But for just a moment, let's project outward--let's use our ability to visualize a world where our cell phone, lap top, and a million and one other things have converged with human-kind. Are there patterns, trends, and an inevitability factor beyond this point?

To me, the answer to this question is a resounding yes.

For this moment, please take the time to watch Mistry's work via TED. Think about a world where convergence finally takes place and the inevitability of that marriage and what the implication on society might be.

Weigh everything you know about human-kind, about politicians, about rich men of great power, and think about the governments they pay big bucks to control... and we'll revisit this subject on my next weblog posting. I'll give you my thoughts on the matter, but in the mean time, please give me yours.

Al Colombo

For the serious researcher:

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