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GoatLord

On the subject of edible wetware

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In the past year, I've posted about one of my more bizarre technological predictions, involving computers in pill form which are ingested, bypass the blood/brain barrier and immediately attach to our neural networks, creating a structured hallucination which acts as a form of augmented reality (hanging menus, relevant info, etc.). The idea was that the pills would generate the OS and load our data from the cloud, but would promptly shut down after so long--perhaps a week or so--leading the subject to ingesting another pill. This form of computing is incredibly portable and requires no batteries. I like this idea because it was insane, and made me a bit uncomfortable.

However, I'm not fully satisfied with it, because I feel like there's other solutions that could be much more successful. Let's go through a few (these cover computing devices only) and assume the projection is about 20 years into the future.

A) Smartphone and tablet-like devices
B) Occulus Rift/Google Glass style visors shrunken down to paper thin shades
C) Multifunctional, transformational devices that can fit in your pocket, but can be stretched to fit across much larger surfaces or stand freely like a laptop/desktop computer
D) Implants placed under the skin which create a wetware OS in the user's mind
E) Non-invasive transmission of information via a bracelet, ring or a device placed in the pocket, which creates a wetware OS in the user's mind
F) Using any given object in the environment as a computer

I like C, which I have been predicting for years, and saw a CG mock-up of, on YouTube. To me that seems pretty plausible. I also like E, because it would avoid the whole implant thing that has become a trope in science fiction. I still like the edible pill, because it's absolutely nuts, but it all comes down to what sort of attitudes will define the people of the 2030s.

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I predict in the future, we will have the same technology as in Human Revolution. No, seriously.

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I'm not keen to go out, buy the game, install it and see what you're talking about, so could you give me a quick synopsis?

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GoatLord said:

I'm not keen to go out, buy the game, install it and see what you're talking about, so could you give me a quick synopsis?

On Deus ex: Human Revolution? Okay. It takes place in 2027 and mechanical augmentations have hit the mainstream. When I mean "mechanical augmentations" I mean things like, mechanical arms, legs, eyes, spines, etc. In game they give the player the ability to do a whole bunch of stuff, like pick up really heavy objects, hack into consoles easier, and a info link system(in your head). That's pretty much it as basic.

That good?

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That sounds plausible for 2027. Obviously, beyond that the augmentations will be organic, but it will definitely be cybernetic for the next decade at least.

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I would agree. The original game however had nano augmentation. They did pretty much the same things, except they were different kinds of nanobots inside your body that did what they were made for (like running faster for example). Although timeline wise, this was in 2052. (This is still at basic)

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2052 is nearly four decades away, so that seems a safe bet for nanobots. We have succeeded in making very rudimentary nanobots that are more novel than practical, so I would guess it would only take about another decade of research and development before we start seeing results on the consumer level. By 2052, I have no doubt that we would have reached a point where your basic abilities could be enhanced by atomic scale devices. But notice that the thread is more about our relationship with computers. If you're like me, you grew up noticing the transition from massive desktop computers to smartphones. My question is, what would be the next logical step? My edible computer hypothesis sounds better than the most common prediction I tend to hear, which is the implants. I'd rather swallow a compute than undergo surgery.

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Such a thread is not complete without including Ray Kurzweil into the discussion:

You have said that by the 2030s, people will have blood cell-sized computing devices in their bloodstreams and brains that connect directly to off-site computer data servers. What makes you think that?

We already have computerized devices that are placed inside the body and even connected into the brain, such as neural implants for Parkinson’s disease and cochlear implants for the deaf. These devices can already wirelessly download new software from the cloud. Technology is shrinking at an exponential rate, which I’ve measured at about 100 in 3D volume per decade. At that rate, we will be able to introduce blood cell-sized devices that are robotic and have computers that can communicate wirelessly by the 2030s.


http://lasvegassun.com/news/2013/jan/26/futurist-ray-kurzweil-predicts--body-computers-and/

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Ray is strange. He has this 2045 date set for the singularity, hoping that the very notion of it will ensure a self-fulfilling prophecy. I can't help but want to believe that some amazing things will have happened by 2045, but I'm uncomfortable being as certain as he is that higher-than-human intelligence will have been developed by then. I think it's definitely possible by then if we get over the consciousness hurdle sooner rather than later.

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That sounds great on paper, but such a thing would likely be created by a big corporation like Google or Microsoft. They already control too many aspects of our lives as it is, I frankly wouldn't want then anywhere near my brain. Imagine having ads in your dreams like that one episode of Futurama?

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HorrorMovieGuy said:

Imagine having ads in your dreams like that one episode of Futurama?

Lol, imagine having to eat an ad block hardware to get rid of the adds.

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GoatLord said:

Now that's interesting! And a bit absurd.

Absurd, but really creative I think. Imagine the endless possibilities. It's actually kinda scary when you think about it.

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Is that how we can escape ads in that Google VR system?

"Take the Red pill, and never see an ad ever again. Take the blue pill, and you'll forget that there was ever such a thing as 'ad free' browsing."

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nxGangrel said:

I predict in the future, we will have the same technology as in Human Revolution. No, seriously.


which is a black and white rip off of ghost in the shell. (literally).
But yes, something like that but less extreme and less unrealistic.

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FireFish said:

which is a black and white rip off of ghost in the shell. (literally).
But yes, something like that but less extreme and less unrealistic.

I don't see how it's unrealistic. The actual in game augments might be little silly, but the actual thing (the mechanical replacements) are bound to happen at some point. Maybe not 2027, maybe 2035 or 2040.

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Using the occasion I'd like to show you this:

http://imgur.com/S1zhoWI

It's a fully operational arm replacement (the girl is an amputee). It's non-invasive, controlled solely by muscle tension in the organic part of the arm (don't ask me, it's "magic" as far as I'm concerned).

Credit to Jehar for explaining this to me :D

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^Thanks for sharing. It's really cool to see people with actual mechanical augments. With that kind of technology now, I'm sure it's development will go further and be way more advanced by 2027.

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