The world is changing, and it’s changing fast. One of the primary agents of this rapid technological advancements. Thanks to the leaps and bounds your devices have made in the past decade alone, modern life now bears so little resemblance to everyday living just 20 years ago.
If you’re old enough to remember, 20 years ago there were already a lot of cellphones, but their capabilities were limited strictly to calling and texting. As for digital connectivity, people considered 200 kilobytes per second to be high-speed internet at the time.
Advances in technology have altered the way you live your life, for better or for worse. But the future holds more surprising ways technology will streamline your life. Below are just 4 advances in different fields of technology and how they can help make your life more convenient . . . or weirder, depending on your viewpoint.
Smartphones are Replacing Computers
Desktop computers are getting rarer outside of the workplace. Unless you have to use a computer for work, more people you know probably own a laptop. For the past 10 years, laptop sales have outpaced desktop sales, by almost 200 percent in 2019 alone. But the days of laptop dominance aren’t going to last long, either. Smartphones have outpaced either, in terms of both sales and convenience.
The latest smartphones can do almost everything your laptop does but they can fit comfortably in your back pocket. Are you looking for new real estate? Don’t booting up your laptop, simply use an app for house hunting. Want to watch a feel-good show? Instead of using a bulky laptop, open a streaming service and curl up watching a Friends Christmas episode.
Smartphones’ processing power now outstrips those of desktop units a little over 10 years ago. They have high resolution screens and cameras to rival laptops. And the best part about a smartphone is that you can carry it around with one hand. They are getting smarter and better at their jobs. In a few years, who knows what else they’ll be capable of doing for you.
DNA Testing for Everything
DNA testing used to be so mysterious and intimidating. In the early 2000s, DNA testing was mostly connected with forensic evidence collection or expensive paternity testing on daytime dramas. However, the number of commercial DNA testing facilities have skyrocketed, and the science has become increasingly common in recent years.
A couple of decades ago, DNA testing would have taken months and hundreds of dollars to accomplish. Today, Walmart offers a DNA testing kit for your ethnic origins at the low price of only $59. The company has also carried paternity testing kits for more or less the same price.
Aside from being more common than ever, companies have made DNA available for a variety of uses, some of which may be considered spurious. For example, there is now a company that aims to reduce irresponsible pet waste disposal through DNA testing. If you don’t know whose dog has been defecating in your yard, the company, known as PooPrints, can match DNA material collected from the waste to a pet registered on a worldwide database.
Driverless Cars of the Future
Multiple companies are working on self-driving cars. These companies include search engine behemoth Google, cutting edge technology developer Tesla and ride-sharing app Uber. Self-driving or driverless cars have already hit the streets as these companies enter their testing phases for these machines. Their advances have already helped current models on the streets. For example, rearview cameras and proximity sensors were developed alongside the artificial intelligence for driverless cars.
Driverless cars require many components to work properly. For example, they need an array of sensors to map out their environment. Most driverless cars use devices, like radar and LIDAR, but they also require functional cameras. Companies build up the image-recognition databases of their driverless cars through you. Image verification software like CAPTCHA, which can be found on almost every website, use your human knowledge to teach artificial intelligence what fire hydrants stop signs and pedestrian crossings look like.
In a few years, self-driving cars can change the way you travel and can remake the future of freighting and parcel delivery.
Technology is one of the most powerful forces in the world. Its advances and developments have changed the course of human society. But it can also change the way you live your everyday life. From the way you go to work to the way you deal with errant pet waste, technology can and will make it more convenient in ways you can’t imagine.