Ten years ago, who would have foreseen a scene where an 11-year-old could tweet his followers to sleep? In the last two years, AI-powered drones, extroverted virtual reality, and augmented reality have become a thing. 2017 saw to it that a humanoid robot acquired the right to live as a legal citizen in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia—it… ahem, she even gave an emotional speech to express her heartfelt gratitude in a keynote event.
The iPhone X can read your “eye print” to unlock the home screen. And, of course, Google completed first rounds of testing for their highly scrutinized self-driving cars. Let’s not even dig into how Qoobo Tail Therapy works. At this rate, the next three years could unbox insane surprises for a whole lot of us. But as these 10 cutting-edge technologies already demonstrate, we might not have to wait that long to realize stunning technological developments. The future is already here…
10. Of Cell Therapy and Nanochip Technology
Recently, scientists at the Ohio State University introduced a wearable tech gadget they dubbed Tissue Nanotransfection (TNT).
According to them, their invention will help bolster the race towards organ regeneration (probably the hack that finally introduces legit anti-aging, forever-young-therapies). Dr. Chandan Sen, who is the lead author of the published study, explained how it all works. To sum up…
Stamp the tiny sticker-like device on your arm. Zap a jolt of electricity through it. It will shoot a ray of pre-programmed DNA code through tiny skin pores underneath it, converting surrounding cells into reservoirs of DNA cells. The DNA cells then reprogram surrounding cells to convert to desired cells that can fight the targeted infection.
Scientists believe they can use this technology to reboot damaged brain and organ tissues—and, of course, rejuvenate aged tissues back to youth.
The cell therapy process takes time to work as cells convince each other how un-cool it is to be damaged goods. But clearly, the technology to heal on autopilot is here.
9. Floating Gardens By Barcelona-based Smart Floating Farms (SFF)
Food is a big deal. With the UN forecasting the global population to explode to around 9+ billion by 2050, demand for food will inevitably spike up to about 70% more. Then there’s the not-too-little problem of global warming and millions of fertile land converting to deserts. There’s hope, but you need to dig in to truly believe it.
Sundrop Farms already harvests 17,000 tons of tomatoes from its high-tech farm located smack in the middle of the Australian desert.
Forget the clever floating gardens of the Aztecs, there are frontier acres under construction—in the air and over huge rivers, lakes, and seas. Forward Thinking Technologies have already presented the design plans and laid the groundwork to manifest the most astonishing agri-tech ever in the form of solar-powered Smart floating farms.
These are lightweight modules that span over 200 meters by 350 meters, interconnected with other modules to form clusters—complete with research centers, and built-in walkways. SFF reports that when complete, the high-tech farms will be able to produce over 8,100 tons of veggies and 1,700 tons of fish into the world’s food grid.
The “land” is aptly located to slash down food lags, carbon footprint (transportation), and of course, offer organic food fit for human nutrition needs.
8. 3D Printing Personalized Food
Speaking of food and food recipes…
Imagine walking into a restaurant, and instead of the usual, “what will you have?”, the waiter asks you, “How would you like your food printed?” And then you respond, “Let’s see… the 3D Printed Pizza, please.”
While startups such as BeeHex have already tested this insane technology and squeezed some success out of it, a pair of Israel-based scientists announced 3D printed food on another level. Here’s how it works:
After years of research, scientists Oded Shoseyov and Ido Braslavsky discovered nano-cellulose, which is a natural fiber they claim the human gut can digest with ease. They plan to add select proteins, antioxidants, vitamins, supplements, carbs, and fats into cartridges containing their nano-cellulose material.
Nano-cellulose contains zero calories as well, which is wonderful news for weight loss managers and perhaps crushing for weight loss pill manufacturers—if they haven’t already jumped on it.
At the moment, their 3D food printing technology only applies to dough, but they promise to expand the variety of food you can make with their futuristic tech.
7. CaloRieco Calories Scanner
And speaking of calories…
Consumer electronics giant Panasonic has come up with a cool tech gadget to help you figure how much damage that portion of Buffalo wings will pile on your waistline and blood tunnels. But there are dozens of calorie scanners out there, what’s special here?
Unlike existing technology, which takes between 60 and 120 seconds, CaloRieco cranks out the calories count within 10 seconds. It leverages proprietary infrared technology to measure the nutrition level of a meal before you can comfortably chunk it down—or dunk it in a bin.
This has made it possible to ramp up accuracy levels by up to 20% compared to prior calorie count tech.
6. Gene Therapy 2.0
Today, for a whopping $1,000 you can have your entire genome sequenced in an equally unreal hospital. In just months, you will be free to walk into a ‘normal’ hospital and have yours sequenced for a mere $100—and down to less than $20 by 2022.
Why should this interest you? Here’s why:
With advancements in genome sequencing and engineering, scientists have come up with nanotechnology-based nanosensors that can detect cancerous cells before the latter becomes a problem.
These ultra-smart microscopic robots, a couple of thousand times tinier than a single human hair, will be introduced into people’s blood systems using syringes. They can then crawl around your system and use a pre-programmed algorithm to identify cancerous tumors from the enzymes that cause them.
That way the war is won before it even begins.
5. 3D Printed Blood Vessels
Meanwhile, at Harvard Medical School…
Scientists have figured out how to leverage bioprinting technology to manufacture body organs and cut down on the need for human-to-human organ transplants—making it less sacrificial to save lives. This is a giant leap towards developing functional, living human tissue. Here’s how it works:
In a recent study published in the Biomicrofluidics, the multinational team explains how they fit different pieces of the 3D printing puzzle to print blood vessels for a 3D printed “vascularized liver” tissue. They used a gel-based ink to print out the hollow channels that become vessels. Once the vessels are set they then wash away the ink.
But the 3D set is incomplete without the lining of endothelial cells that human blood vessels have on the inner layers, which offer a protective barrier against foreign chemicals and infectants. So they use human endothelial cells or primary cells to make up the semi-permeable layer.
Combined with other nanotechnology systems under development, it means doctors can, in the near-future, administer drugs directly to affected tissues, observe how the drugs absorb into the liver, and take an informed course of actions without ever having to conduct extensive studies on patients—which in many occasions rely on trial and error analysis.
Now this is much closer to a home run than talk about accomplishing human head transplants, isn’t it?
4. The Sunscreen Pill
Six years back, British scientists dove into the Great Barrier Reef in Australia and came out with a ground-breaking discovery. They had figured out how the blossoming coral reef at GBR makes its anti-sun compound to protect itself from harmful ultraviolet rays, and instead absorb vitamin D to bolster growth.
Fast-forward to October 2017 and a New Zealand firm made the first-ever sunscreen pill. According to the seller, GO Sun UV Protect can help reduce skin cell oxidation and improve resistance to sunburn. A GO Healthy technical support manager was, however, quick to clarify that they recommend people use their product as a complement to sunscreen rather than the latter’s replacement. That echoes what the Cancer Society recommends.
For each capsule of GO Sun UV Protect you get 250 milligrams of grape seed, an anti-inflammatory, and an additional 6 milligrams of astaxanthin. Astaxanthin is a carotenoid that scientists and skin care industry insiders claim to offer UV exposure protection.
GO Healthy is not alone. Sunsafe RX and Heliocare have introduced similar sunscreen pills that work the same way as GO Sun, by protecting partakers from both UVA and UVB sun rays.
While none of the brands of sunscreen pills divulge wisdom to point out how they connected the dots between coral reef UV protection secrets and on-demand sunscreen pills to pop, it did happen in the end.
3. ORB Sleep Complex
The Sleep Foundation reports scary statistics: shocking cases of more people missing out on rejuvenating down times asleep. The main causes of sleepless nights happen to be stress, gadgets, and, well… lack of sleep.
ORB Sleep Complex is a $50 capsule that combines multiple vitamins to help users call on sleep, fall asleep faster, and stay asleep. The company behind it claims to have patented the multivitamins’ 2-in-1 time-release delivery system.
Basically how the system works is it releases the rainbow of calming essential oils (including B12 vitamins and 5 HTP) into your blood system when it’s time to kick it, and all the way until it’s time to rise and shine. ORB says this is just one of a selection of innovative vitamins and delivery system, saying they have a line of tailored solutions including heart health and mental clarity vitamins to pop on the go.
But while ORB is counting on multivitamin innovation, the Nox Smart Sleep Light is bringing enlightenment to sleep on another level. It uses a spectrum of over 16 million colors that stimulate your body to produce more of the sleep hormone, melatonin. You can set it up to produce calming sounds to soothe you to sleep, too.
Unlike similar existing technologies, it can wake you up come morning. It glows a bevy of colors reminiscent of the glowing early-morning sunlight until you are fully awake. There are a bunch of buttons, too, so you can tinker with settings and derive a truly personalized sleep experience—every time, hopefully.
Now you can ditch your jerky, abrupt alarm clock for a more soothing technology that should ease you into new work/life routines, especially handy for Monday mornings.
2. Out With Fingerprints, In With Earprints
Fingerprint scanners are quickly becoming old news, especially after Michigan State University researchers proved just how easy it is to hack your fingerprint-protected gadget.
However, apparently the geometry of your ear is so unique, you can earprint-protect your device from every other person trying to log into it. You’d need to first download Descartes Biometrics’ ERGO software to your smartphone, and then fire it up. Follow up by lifting the device to your head and press the touchscreen against your ear.
The software will pop a sound into your ear. The echo that scrambles back is influenced by the unique geometry of your ear, supposedly as unique as your fingerprint. The ERGO suite will record that sound and store it in its biometric database for future use. You do not need extra hardware to pull this off. And they claim the software stores up to ten scans of your ear… just in case.
In China, though, Face++ is causing a massive disruption with pioneering face-recognition technology that’s actually working. Once a user’s registered and uploaded their face scan to the system, they can use their face to gain restricted entry into buildings, authorize e-payments, and track criminals.
While it’s kind of creepy to see your face on multiple screens on the go, this is an indisputably remarkable tech in play.
1. Breathalyzer Cars Are Real
Towards the end of last year, the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration unveiled a technology that could be integrated into a device in a car with the ability to sniff whether the driver was too drunk to drive safely.
The software could also be connected to the steering wheel, and scan the blood flowing underneath the driver’s fingertips to detect how much alcohol they had in their blood. If the software figured the driver was too drunk to drive it would lock down the vehicle’s system. Sorry, no one’s going anywhere with you while driving under the influence, buddy.
Now carmaker SEAT just integrated the tech into their Leon Cristobol, their latest family hatchback. The driver has to pass the breathalyzer test before the auto can bolt off. There’s no escaping it. There’s a camera on the dash that uses face-detection technology and records the test taker’s face, so you won’t be getting a sober passenger to take the test on your behalf. That’s quite something.
The only real constant in technology is change. And as this selection of top 10 awesome technologies in existence today clearly illustrates, there’s a whole lot going on in several industries. In fact, the most stunning thing that could ever happen is if nothing was happening to bring the future even closer to home.