TecTrends Shaping Our Lives

8 Technology Trends Shaping Our Lives (Part 2)

Technology is constantly evolving. What exciting developments can we expect to see in coming years? Based on the findings of a white paper by our parent company, NTT DATA, this four-part blog series delves into the eight trends that will have the biggest influence on our personal and working lives.

In the previous instalment of this series, we explored immersive interaction and precision life science. Now we will take a look how artificial intelligence and autonomous mobility are impacting our society.

Trend 3: Symbiosis with Artificial Intelligence

Artificial intelligence (AI) is gaining traction. Experts on the technology are fast becoming a commodity as competition between developers hots up. Their objective? To enhance the performance of both humans and robots by nurturing a working symbiosis between the two.

Achieving this synergy requires pinpointing tasks where AI outperforms humankind. For example, a robot’s ability to learn and predict future actions resulted in a remarkable victory for AI over human intelligence: A computer winning a game of Go (an ancient board game similar to chess) against a professional player. There is of course more to AI than mastering board games; this feat is merely a sign of its ability to make informed, context-based decisions.

AI Meets ER

In fact, robots can save lives. With an accuracy rate of 95.2% in image recognition , they are able to detect tumors that the human eye might overlook. And it is not only in hospitals where AI can provide invaluable assistance. NTT Data is developing new services using its cloud robotics technology for employment in nursing homes. Communication robots monitor and interact with elderly residents to ensure that they have taken their medication and are safe and well.

Although robots may never match humans in certain roles, we should not dismiss their adaptability and creativity entirely. By optimizing human-robot interaction, we can harness AI’s potential to support us in numerous fields. Artificial intelligence can make humanity safer, healthier, and more productive.

Trend 4: Autonomous Mobility

Already a well-established business trend, the Internet of Things (IoT) is now making headway in the automotive industry. Cars can collect data from their surroundings to enhance performance and improve safety. Constant, real-time exchange between vehicles and the urban environment will see cities become fluid, ever-evolving systems.

Connected cars are at the forefront of this transformation. Experts predict that by 2020 there will be 250 million of them on the road globally . They are able to use information such as location, speed, and road conditions to provide driving assistance as required. And in the future, automobiles will become entirely autonomous.

Smart and Efficient Infrastructure

Alongside the proliferation of self-driving cars, smart city initiatives are also on the rise. NTT DATA, for example, is developing traffic prediction and traffic signal simulation technology. The solution proved effective in a field study conducted in Jilin City, China, where it eased congestion and reduced travel times for public transport.

But how will engineers power autonomous vehicles? Electricity is perhaps the most obvious answer, as it is environmentally-friendly and sustainable. Yet it has also proven an inefficient fuel source for cars, yielding low mileage per charge. Work is underway on several solutions, including in-road wireless charging and a huge battery factory to reduce energy costs through economies of scale.

Securing the City of Tomorrow

With a way out of the energy dilemma now in sight, the only remaining threat to autonomous mobility’s progress are security concerns. In the hands of the wrong individuals or groups, connected infrastructure could bring whole cities to their knees. However, should counter-hacking measures prove effective, it will be the making of tomorrow’s metropolis—and not its downfall.

Preview to next post

The next post in this series covers ambient commerce and digital mesh computing.

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