The Next 25 Years in Tech

Artwork: Chip Taylor
The future ain't what it used to be. In the pre-PC era, futurists predicted huge changes in transportation. By 2008 we would be flitting about in personal jetpacks and taking vacations on the moon. But the communications revolution spurred by personal computers and the Internet wasn't on anyone's radar.

Now the technology landscape is on the verge of changes that will transport us to places few people have imagined. We know that computers will be vastly more powerful, mobile, and connected. The question for the next 25 years is whether we'll be able to tell where technology ends and the rest of our life begins.

Technology will become firmly embedded in advanced devices that deliver information and entertainment to our homes and our hip pockets, in sensors that monitor our environment from within the walls and floors of our homes, and in chips that deliver medicine and augment reality inside our bodies.

This shiny happy future world will come at a cost, though: Think security and privacy concerns. So let's hope that our jetpacks come with seat belts, because it's going to be a wild ride.

For a look at the current status of some predictions made in old science-fiction films and TV shows, check out our slide show, "Five Sci-Fi Scenarios That Will Come True."

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