Todays date with the future. Universal Studios
Head, Department of Computing & Information Systems, University of Melbourne
Interfaces will have become seamless by 2045 and are accessed continuously through familiar, unconscious actions.
During your morning run, body radar triggers a gentle vibration against your skin; someone is approaching around a blind corner.
In the kitchen, active contact lenses create the illusion that your friend is with you, by generating an image and overlaying it on the room. The image is stable, no matter how your head and eyes move. In conversation, she is present but also thousands of kilometres away.
At your desk, the contact lenses create the illusion of a screen in front of you. Its actions are controlled by finger gestures, while your rapid, subtle muscle movements are interpreted as a stream of text to be captured in an email.
Through your neural implants, you are aware of activity in your networks. These are not sounds, or images, or touch but some mingling of them into a new form of sensation. You try to contact your mother, but she is offline, perhaps sleeping. No matter, her house can sense her and assures you that she is well.
You decide to go offline yourself for a while, and your sensors fall quiet. As always, it feels like a kind of blindness like closing ones eyes for sleep, but so much more acute. You are surrounded by just the peaceful emptiness of reality.
Lecturer in Software Engineering, Monash University
Where were going, we wont need roads at least, not all of the time.
By 2045 the much-mocked flying car (or, more accurately, a flying taxi) is likely to be widely available. Furthermore, my own discipline of software engineering is key perhaps even the key to making it happen.
Even today, we could mass-produce personal helicopters at an affordable financial cost, but at a terrible human one. Helicopters are extremely difficult to learn to fly, and even with extensive pilot training are arguably the riskiest form of transport we use.
The science of a solution is already to hand. We dont walk the family dog with a drone mini-helicopter, as depicted in the 2015 of Back to the Future II, but drones are a widely available commercial product.
Developing the software that controls these miniature flying cars to the point where it is both reliable and robust enough to control much larger vehicles in real-world conditions including handling hardware failures will take years of testing and revision. Convincing conservative air safety regulators will probably take years more.
But my educated guess is that these problems will be overcome by 2045. The result wont look like a hot-rodded DeLorean, and it certainly wont double as a time machine. But, finally, humanity just might have the freedom of the skies.
Professor of Artificial Intelligence at UNSW and research group leader at Data61 (formerly NICTA)
My background is in artificial intelligence so Ill stick to predicting where AI might be in 2045.
In 2030, Apple releases the latest version of its platform wide operating system, iOS 20 which delivers true artificial intelligence in all the major languages of the world to our phones, tablets and computers. Google responds with its latest version of Android which offers similar capabilities but has a cheekier sense of humour.
You want to go out for dinner? You simply tell your smart phone: Book me a table for 8pm at that restaurant I read reviewed in the paper last weekend and let my wife know. Problem solved.
And by 2045, Apple and Googles AI operating systems are competing to control seamlessly our cars, homes, phones and offices.
In the morning, you walk to your car, which is already nice and cool as the front door said you were on the way. The car then drives you to work autonomously. But due to heavy traffic en route, your calendar pushes back your first appointment 15 minutes. The technology is pro-active, anticipating requests, and smoothing your life.
But then some robot digger repairing the road digs up the NBN cable by mistake and the cloud goes down.
So you walk home and kiss your wife on the cheek. Shall I see if we can still fire up the barbecue?
Back to the BBQ