Sunday, November 27, 2011

Future technologies ... that already exist.

Last week we looked at proposed technologies that were in development. Some are farther along than we realize.

This week is about innovations that already exist. Some are mind boggling! Click the title link.

1. After watching the quick movie of all ten innovations, choose one and find a website with more information about it. Provide a shortlink of your findings. (10)

2. What interests you most about this innovation? (10)

3. Think big. If you could add one adaptation, improvement or change to the device, what would it be? No you can't say, the device is perfect the way it is. Think outside the box. Make a change and substantiate it. (30)

Yeah you probably guessed it ...the emphasis on this blog is question 3.
Numbers = (Point allocation)


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  2. 1 The project I am most interested in is the “Big Dog” robot by Boston Dynamics.
    2. I have been following Boston Dynamics’ robots for nearly five years now. I have always been interested in the attempts to make robots more animate and to make their actions and motions fallow that of a living being, which are the main goals of Boston Dynamics. The Big Dog is interesting because of its ability to make decisions based on the fastest and easiest route through an uneven terrain, and execute appropriate action. The motion of Big Dog is by no means smooth or dog like, however, its reasoning and path finding abilities match very accurately. I think that “Little Dog” is a more fascinating because they are able to put a lot of Big Dogs abilities into a much smaller robot. It is unfortunate that a lot of the other great robots made by Boston Dynamics are not as attention-grabbing as Big Dog and therefore do not get the recognition they desperately deserve. (check out some of the other robots made by Boston Dynamic by fallowing my first link)
    3 It is very difficult to mimic the complexity of animate motion. Boston Dynamics has struggled with this for several years but I believe that they should be tackling the problem from a different angle. Big Dog has great path finding abilities along with great correctional abilities (watch a video of engineers kicking Big Dog). However Big Dog fails on a level of mimicking the motion of a natural four-legged animal. The Big Dog takes little steps, never moving a foot out in front. The next innovative step from here would be to use an actual dog as a controller for Big Dog. Putting sensors on a dog and having the dog walk a straight path. Use the data points collected to control Big Dog. This wouldn’t be a great stride towards more natural walking.

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  4. 1) I thought the hover car was the most interesting of the ten inventions. Some info i found on it can be found here:

    2) I really like the idea of people finally being able to buy a flying car and being able to even keep it in their garage. Now that the hover cars are being worked on, transportation will completely change. Instead of flying in an airplane all the way to New York from Phoenix for somewhere around $500 a person, these Hover cars would probably cost much less than that. This could finally allow an average person to visit other places much quicker and for an affordable price.

    3) One major flaw I can see in this hover car is its absence of wheels. America is mainly made up of roads for transportation so I think that could lead to some issues. Landing a hover car without wheels will probably be very challenging for an average person. So, to resolve that, the hover car needs some efficient lightweight wheels on the bottom of it instead of the sled looking bars that it originally has.


  5. 1) I chose the Japanese holograms

    2) Holographics are the way of actual 3D tv. The current 3D is a shame and a waste of money. This is the direction 3D technology needs to go. Not towards flashy gimmicks. I think it is very cool and something worthwhile.

    3) Making the hologram actually 3D. What I would really like to see is a movie theater setup with the content and action in the middle with holograms and an entire audience surrounding it. I think that would be an awesome reality and way to escape reality.

  6. 1. The Inovation that caught my attention would have to be the holographic tv. After a little bit of googling I found this ( news article talking about the technology.

    2. This interests me because I would like to see the tv, which has only gone through a couple minor updates since it's invention in the early 1900's, go through a major update. If this technology lives up to the its high expectation then it could be projecting entertainment in homes around the world within a decade. This could then lead to new inovations in anything with a screen. That means new computers with holographic monitors and new cell phones where you can have a face to face conversation with somebody. As the screens change so does the software and filming process. New forms of filming entertainment will have to be developed and hole new operating systems will have to be built to support holograms. This could revolutionize everything.

    3. To improve holograms, one could include the same technology found in sticky lights to create a touchable interface. Just like touch screens, sticky lights could create holographic remotes or keyboards to input information. One could then spin an image by touching it or press a link in the air.

  7. 1. I thought the thought controlled prosthetic limbs were the coolest

    2. the thing that intests me most is the ability to help people with missing limbs control these with there mind

    3. the limbs currently need a chip to be implanted in the brain one improvement would be to remove this and have a small devise that could pick them up from father away maybe running on electrical impulses from the brain

  8. 1. I thought the wireless charger was was the coolest.

    2. the reason it interest me is because just think no cords or plugs, no frestrations with tangles. just set your devise up to another and done.

    3. If i were to change this I would make it so that the charger can be fully wireless and connect to the closest devise while ur walking. mabey use the energy from a nearby bisiness but make it so your not taking up there electricity bill but just enought power to charge your device.

  9. One of the things I feel is not being mentioned is the difference between invention and innovation. Invention is creating something new, but innovation is creating something better, modifying and enhancing things that have already been invented. To quote DOW "Invention is important, it's the beginning, it's the spark. But innovation is where we actually create value" ( So realize that when talking about innovation it is imperative that understand that innovation is change, and not creation.

  10. 1.
    2. I'm most interested in its ability to bend light and make an object appear as thought it has disappeared. I hope in my lifetime that they improve upon it to where the technology is used in everyday items, and that it is an affordable consumer product. It could have a few useful applications, but I believe it could be even better.
    3. The way you could improve it would be to, of course, shrink it down or make less obtrusive. Then, go one step further and put it into a rattle-can so it can be applied to any surface. By putting it into a paint form anyone could apply to whatever they needed or wanted. Imagine the Compass Lab with this paint, what it would look like?

  11. 1)Force field tank!

    2)What makes me so interested in this is because this might actually save my life one day in a combat situation, and maybe also applied to civilian aircraft.

    3) I would apply the force field to government buildings. Apllying this to government buildings would protect many important delegates from harm. It would also be great in any of the delegates vehicles as well. I could improve this device by having multiple detection layers to avoid object collision. If the layer of detection was greater, the incoming attack can be disabled in a safe distance, leaving the disables shell at the feet of soldiers.

  12. 1. Wireless Power

    2. The fact that anywhere we go our device could be fully charged, some device wont even need a battery. This would also be beneficial to the earth because we wont have to waste resources making wires.

    3. I would see a flaw being when you are camping or in the middle of nowhere having no wireless power available to you. I would make the wireless power capable of using already existing cell phone towers. This way the devices are always charging any would eliminate the need for batteries in most devices. I would also have a way on the device of still using a regular wall charger incase a catastrophic failure were to occur om the network you could still charge your device "the good old fashion way"

    Its going to be so weird when one day I tell my kids that I use to have to plug in my phone and computer to charge them.

  13. 1. The hover car is the most interesting.
    2. It interests me because it would be sweet to fly around in a car.
    3. The only flaw would be skyscrapers and other hover cars, and also, any type of land car would become obsolete. so the years of "innovation" in car engineering would be wasted just for a car that can fly.

  14. 1.

    2. The fact that they are actually making a object appear in air that is animate and moves to follow a show.Like Will said above, 3D terrible, it just extrudes an image a few inches in front of a screen, that's not 3D... this is.

    3. Do not even get me started...! Ok, well first you could have multiple holograms interact with one another or you could make them to talk with a with a corresponding speaker. If we could could incorperate people into a hologram we could record important speaches and display them in front of anyone so its like they are looking at a mini version of the speaker!:D

  15. The innovation that I was most interested on was the Hologram
    1.) This researcher has been working for a while on a way to do real time 3D Video chatting. I really loved this! how cool would it be to have a miniature version of your boss standing on your desk to telling you what to do.
    2.) The thing that interests me most about this is that it could revolutionize communication, gaming, and entertainment.
    3.) If I had one suggestion for this technology I would suggest promoting it more! No body even knows that this exists yet!

  16. 1. Retinal Implants -

    2. I think that the retinal implant idea is really cool and it's a breakthrough in science and it seems pretty legit and it sounds like it could really work. This could change a blind person from being completely blind to being able to see shapes and objects and I find that really cool.

    3. If I could change this innovation a little I would alter the way the process is carried out. So, I'm sure there may be some problems with this type of surgery, it's a persons EYE! What if they had say a robot or something else do the actual surgery? Or maybe if they cant change the way the process is carried out to ensure 100% accurate results, then what about making it even COOLER!? What I mean by this is that they could create some sort of glasses to make it so that after the surgery, the person could see even more dimmer lighted objects. In the article I researched they say, "Over the past seven years, surgeons have pioneered electronic implants that are attached to the retina and are linked by wire to a small external camera that is mounted to a pair of spectacles." So, they have the right idea about the spectacles but I would make them even better. By adding better lenses or increasing the power of what makes the camera operate.

  17. 1. Definitely the cooles thing was the force field.
    2. What interested me about this was that it actually works!!! I had never heard of this before now and it is amazingly cool. I always wondered what it would be like to have your own force field...
    3.If I could change the innovation slightly, I would probably try to lengthen the time that the force field is up.

  18. 1:
    Force field for the army vehicles.

    2: This is soo interesting. Counting the fact that that our army will be able to use their maned vehicles and no have to worry about IED bombs and other explosives.

    3: Well in order to change this device you would need world class scientist to explore the force field. Although i would try to make a force field somehow , for our planes. Because in the army today we are getting planes and UAV's shot down up there..

  19. 1)

    2) The fact that technology has finally reached a new standard. It uses synthetic brain connectivity in order to control the arm. Most amputated people will never get to use their arm again, but with this innovation it makes it possible to use a second arm with ease.

    3) Well the fact that it is made of all metal make it an uncomfotability. If we were to make it out of a much lighter substance then it would be better. At the state it is now it is very heavy and very uncomfortable to the person.

  20. 1. Invisibility
    2. I think that the whole concept of bending light to make things invisible is really cool. Im sure the technology is way too advanced to make affordable to the public.
    3.I really hope that they find a way to make this idea more cost efficient. also to make the quality of the invisibility better because the person looked kind of blurry. Im sure that they would have restrictions on where this suit could be used. Maybe making a shield in all banks or government buildings so this technology couldn't be used for bad.

  21. 1. The project I am most interested in is the 3D bio-printer already capable of printing arteries; making hearts, teeth, and bones possible within 10 years.

    2. What interests me about this innovation is that I think that having the ability to print human organs on demand would be a great medical advancement and it it works well many lives could be saved using this product.

    3. If I could change this innovation in anyway I would make the printer to where you can form a specific body part straight from the printer to see how it will be formed and what the end product will be like.

  22. 1) FORCE FIELDS!!
    2) this innovation is amazing and the type of technology it took to make this is out of this world it is literally one of the coolest things ive ever seen. it will be able to protect you from almost anything its pretty amazing if it gets timed right, you cant run around with a constant force feild (even though that would be pretty awesome) it would be bad
    3) make the force feilds last longer, they only last for a fraction of a second and have to be timed perfectly to protect you. but it would becool if it lasted longer you could be in the war and feel like your in star wars just reflecting all these rockets that would be so cool i cant wait to see the final product and see it in use in the military

  23. I like the exoskeleton I watched some Youtube video

    I think it is cool because you can run with 90 pounds of weight and its nothing its not that big you can take it off in 6 sec and run normally it folds up into the size of a backpack

    Make it more versatile and make it pack down to the size of a iPod touch and advance it to make it full body suit use better materials, make it so its not for only a person expand it to a race horse a dog a cat ect.

  24. 1. Exoskeletons!
    2. When ever I hear of exoskeleton type of machinery I become all nostalgic and remember growing up with Gundam Wings! Is there a better idea than to have a giant robot that you can control? Think about it, one trip to the car -- you may be able to even fly to the store. They will almost certainly be used in military personel first then they *may* be released into the public life.

    3. Smaller, faster, more efficient. That may seem all simple, but if you could get it into the personal life of society. Gundam wars! Include them with optical implants or 3D type of glasses to have even better vision. Be able to switch between night and thermal and normal vision with the click of a button while also having the strength of 10 men? Baller-nerd status. Security guards could wear them. Preferably not police though.


    I am interested by this invention because I always have trouble with all those annoying wires and wireless power is a life changing idea to me.

    According to the website the invention slowly recharges the device which is not very convient in a tight schedule. I would like to find a way to make it put out power faster.

  26. 1. I think the force field in the U.K info here
    2. I think this is very helpful in the fight agent Terries. This shield was made to stop what the terries manly use agenst us.
    3. If I could change any thing about this I would change would be that it has its own power supply rather than the tanks.


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