LOS ALAMITOS, Calif., 18 November 2014 — Digital computing has transformed every aspect of society, and as new devices and new ways to connect continue to emerge, we will enter an era of Seamless Intelligence where human knowledge and intelligence will become ubiquitous to those using state-of-the-art information technology.
IEEE Computer Society’s 2022 Report, which surveys the futures of 23 technologies, explores this new world, where computing devices — from small, wearable devices and chips embedded under the skin to mobile devices, home servers, TVs, and refrigerators — will form an intelligent mesh that augments reality with information gathered from our fingertips, eyes, ears, and other senses, and even directly interfaced to our brain waves.
“We continue to witness an increase in the numbers, shapes, and sizes of computing devices, as well as an increase in connectivity,” said Hasan Alkhatib, president of cloud and virtualization consultancy SSN Services and author of the Seamless Intelligence section of the 2022 Report. “As a result of this pervasive penetration of computing and communication capabilities, human knowledge, intelligence, and connectivity are increasingly enhanced and augmented by information technology.”
At the heart of this revolution is seamless networking, made possible by wireless technologies such as Near-Field Communication (NFC), Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and 4G and 5G. This new world will also require sophisticated intelligent coordination software; voice, image, and motion recognition; cloud-based APIs; and more sophisticated identity technologies.
Meta-identity information will play a major role, capturing a person’s profile and managing preferences while, for example, shopping, eating, and traveling. For example, a hotel could detect a guest’s preferred type of bed, floor level, or smoking status and automatically fulfill a reservation accordingly.
Pervasive and massive identity recognition will potentially deliver myriad benefits, such as cashless and contactless financial transactions, the ability to cross borders without stopping for inspection, or walking into a coffee shop in a foreign country and having the barista offer up a favorite coffee because of preferences appearing on her counter screen.
The application of seamless and pervasive intelligence will be particularly felt in healthcare. Patients may be able to walk into a hospital and have their entire medical histories be accessible to the attending medical professional from a centrally managed health vault. Patients won’t need to state what medications they’re taking or what immunizations their children received. Physicians will be able to track patients’ digestive tracts without making an incision just by having them swallow a camera.
Progress in robotics will likely enable autonomous mass transit vehicles that automatically choose the best routes and already know passengers’ destinations.
Among the other potentially useful applications of Seamless Intelligence: Executives will receive continuous intelligence from big data analysis running in the background; and law enforcement will use smart sensors, surveillance cameras, and eavesdropping devices to capture criminals.
“By 2022, we project that we will be well into a phase where intelligence becomes seamless and ubiquitous to those who can afford and use state-of-the-art information technology,” said IEEE Computer Society President Dejan Milojicic, who led creation of the 2022 Report.
The 2022 Report covers security cross-cutting issues, open intellectual property movement, sustainability, massively online open courses, quantum computing, device and nanotechnology, device and nanotechnology, 3D integrated circuits, multicore, photonics, universal memory, networking and interconnectivity, software-defined networks, high-performance computing, cloud computing, the Internet of Things, natural user interfaces, 3D printing, big data and analytics, machine learning and intelligent systems, computer vision and pattern recognition, life sciences, computational biology and bioinformatics, and robotics for medical care.
To download a copy of the report, visit http://www.computer.org/publications/tech-news/trends/2022-report.