How do you predict the future? Technology leader Nicholas Negroponte accurately predicted some of the most prevalent devices we use to day â€” back in 1984. Negroponte explains how he makes predictions with great confidence.
Todd Humphreys forecasts the near-future of geolocation when millimeter-accurate GPS "dots" will enable you to find pin-point locations, index-search your physical possessions â€” or to track people without their knowledge. And the response to the sinister side of this technology may have unintended consequences of its own.
Call it extremely personalized medicine. Tissue engineer Nina Tandon explains how in the future, we'll be able to grow replacement organs from our very own cells. In the future, that same technology will help develop custom designed drugs.
"I do spend time trying to think about what I cannot imagine." -- Nicholas Negroponte
Visions of the future don't just have to come from science fiction. There's very real technology today giving us clues about how our future lives might be transformed. So what might our future look like? And what does it take for an idea about the future to become a reality? In this hour, TED speakers make some bold predictions and explain how we might live in the future.
Something peculiar is happening to rivers and streams in large parts of the United States â€” the water's chemistry is changing. Scientists have found dozens of waterways that are becoming more alkaline. Alkaline is the opposite of acidic â€” think baking soda or Rolaids.
Research published in the current issue of Environmental Science and Technology shows this trend to be surprisingly widespread, with possibly harmful consequences.
What's especially odd about the finding is its cause: It seems that acid rain actually has been causing waterways to grow more alkaline.