In no particular order, here are some of the amazing technological ideas that appeared during the first decade of this century, along with my prediction for the next decade. If I left off your favorite, add it in the comments.
- Although I detest Steve Jobs as a human being, I must give him credit for two of the biggest tech gadgets: the IPod and the accompanying ITunes Store - and the IPhone. Both were revolutionary.
My 2020 prediction: Apple will lose its innovative edge following the death of Jobs.
- Although I don't own a TV, I know enough to see that the advent of the DVR totally changed television behavior. Unfortunately, it didn't cause it to decrease - Americans watch an average of 150 hours a month. And we wonder why we're so obese!
My 2020 prediction: TVs will cease to exist as a separate piece of equipment. It will be combined into whatever form the computer is taking and all content will be wireless.
- The bulky TV and monitor disappeared and brought us LCD. At least TVs don't have to take over people's living rooms anymore - something that always grossed me out.
My 2020 prediction: I have no ideas here, but I'm sure they'll come up with something to make us spend money on.
- Guys who would never ask for directions don't need to anymore - they all have GPS. Sort of removes the "I got lost" excuse.
My 2020 prediction: GPS is just getting started. Merged with mapping and photos, it will really take over our lives, and we won't be able to live without it.
- Video games have exploded - and I have not participated.
My 2020 prediction: Soon we won't have real lives anymore - it will all take place in the virtual world.
- Flash Drives have become so cheap that we can carry our world in our pocket with us.
My 2020 prediction: The next big transformative invention is a long lasting, cheap battery.
- Facebook has taken over the world - and most importantly brought non techie types and old folks on board. It led to Twitter which helped to forment a revolution in Iran - and forced politicians to communicate with their constituents.
My 2020 prediction: Facebook and Twitter may not be here, but another form of social networking will take its place.
- The Flip Camcorder lets anyone be a videographer - and even become famous if your video goes viral on YouTube.
My 2020 prediction: All this stuff - phone, camera, video, etc - will be in one gadget and be SO much faster and better - and at the same time, smaller and lighter.
- Wikipedia provides amazingly reliable knowledge on just about anything.
My 2020 prediction: Wikipedia will still be here - only bigger and better.
- Google has provided us with incredible search, the first good online email, online programs for what everyday people need, great mapping with pictures, blogging software anyone can use, and now a new phone. And, they made it all available for free without intrusive advertise. Amazing!
My 2020 prediction: Google will take over the world - Apple and Microsoft will go the way of Netscape. I also predict they will maintain their philosophy that will keep them from becoming an evil enterprise.Ain't technology fun? If you don't think so, you're in for some tough times.