I always seem to start blogs these days with how crazy busy I am, and while that is true, it is also boring and totally un-newsworthy. Instead lets talk the future, and, as anyone who knows me will tell you, I really enjoy watching technology and science progress.
We live in an amazing time, especially in the last few years barely a day has gone by without some discovery or new innovation. Yes, I know there is a lot of hype as well and and lot of stuff comes just as a result of better manufacturing so new i Phones are getting less column inches and when Samsung released a 256GB (Byte not bit!) flash chip last month it barely got a mention. Breakthroughs like this generally don’t affect me, for example this chip has approximately 100 million times more flash memory than my last embedded project, even my largest MySQL database storing 7 years of data only runs to 3GB, however they are a benchmark of human progress and each one will get people out there thinking of new possibilities.
But what about the stuff we are not hearing about? or those we do know about that are on the cusps of game changing breakthroughs?
There are lots, some are being played out in plain view, others I suspect are well hidden. Two Game changing technologies in particular I believe are closer to coming to fruition that anyone may think.
Firstly Fusion; No I am not talking the 15 billion dollar monstrosity being built in France which will probably cost a lot more and will probably never get finished. Nor am I talking about cold fusion which has too much smoke and mirrors and not enough hard science to back up its claims.
No, I’m talking about the three smaller efforts in the USA and Canada which are slowly progressing to the world changing finish line that is break even fusion. (ie more energy out than is put in)
Although the nearest one is still three orders of magnitude off this goal there are good signs that the science to do it is sound and the engineering is do-able and progressing rapidly. I myself am rooting for the LPP Fusion project, which almost runs out of a shed and is constantly plagued by funding issues but has a couple of impressive hitters working for them and solid physics behind the project. I am really hoping for a David vs Goliath knock out in the next two years. Good luck guys and support them if you can.
My second pick for a technology we are not going to hear much about until it happens as I believe it is being done quite stealthy at the moment, and that is Asteroid mining. Putting two and two together I am rapidly coming to the conclusion someone is about to get real on this though I really dont know who (Yes I did pick google in an early edit but I’ve re-considered after a lot of good natured abuse – Thanks Guys!)
So in two years we will almost certainly have Tera-Byte flash chips (without any fanfare), we will also probably have xpoint memory. VR will almost certainly be in a lot of living rooms and Augmented reality will be close behind. Elon may even have released his plans for Mars (In another timeline I would have been first in the queue to go to Mars as it is I will stay here and wish them the best of luck.)
Of course there are a few way out stuff that may play out (such as the EM Drive) and every year another million or so engineers and scientists roll off the university production lines so who knows!
SpaceX and Blue Origin are still the Elephants in the Room, Elon Musk who owns SpaceX will either be leading the charge or supporting the charge and making shit-loads of money while doing it. If you don’t know him now you almost certainly will soon. And Blue Origin who are owned by Jeff Bezos, (yes that guy that owns Amazon) will certainly make this a two horse race.. Good for both of them I say.
Anyway, however my two picks pan out, something is brewing and I am betting in two years something game changing will occur and sci-fi will be a lot closer to reality.
… Ah the emails are queuing up.. Back to support !