The Speculist has a survey of the most significant technological development of the next 20 years. Provide your own predictions and reasoning in the comments below this article.
I pick energy breakthrough. Specifically nuclear fusion of some kind for commercial energy. There are a few leading candidates. Lawrenceville Plasma physics, EMC2 (IEC) fusion, general fusion, Tri-alpha energy and potentially a dark horse from the cold fusion category (I am in corresondence with a researcher in stealth mode). I also expect advances with superconductors (possibly high volume room temperature) and lasers and both those areas will help nuclear fusion research and development. With nuclear fusion at commercial level that also gives us space with space rockets.
AI will get help from zettaflop class machines as we near 2030. There will be progress but I doubt greater than human level AGI before 2030.
I see advances in nanotech and with really good 3D printing but not the full deal diamondoid molecular nanotech (just because the effort and funding is still not happening at the needed level to deliver the results.
There could also be some good human regeneration and life extension progress. However, there is again not great funding yet. Regeneration has decent funding from DARPA and some other sources. However, here is the FDA and regulatory delays.
I will do another more detailed and comprehensive review later.
Futurists David Pearce, George Dvorsky, Michael Anissimov, Phil Bowermaster and Aaron Saenz gave there answer to that question at ilookforwardto.
Saenz Aaron Saenz. Writes for Singularity Hub. The single most significant technological development in the coming 20 years will be the widespread adoption of human stem cells to treat an extraordinary range of medical conditions, from organ failure to Alzheimer's.
David Pearce. Co-founder of World Transhumanist Association and the Abolitionist Society. David predicts the development of quantum computers will revolutionize our root metaphor of mind, life and the multiverse. The development of immersive virtual reality technologies will revolutionize our entertainment, sexual and social lives. Progress in neuroscience will deliver safe and sustainable therapies for mood enrichment.
Anissimov Michael Anissimov. Media Director of the Singularity Institute for Artificial Intelligence, owner of the world’s most popular transhumanist blog, Accelerating Future. Possibly molecular manufacturing.
Phil-Bowermaster- Phil Bowermaster. Writer of The Speculist.
The most significant technological development that we can expect to see over the next 20 years represents the completion of a process which has been several decades in the making. It can be viewed one of two ways:
1. The migration of human intelligence to a new substrate, accompanied by a massive increase in the speed and power of human intelligence
2. The emergence of a new entity, a hybrid of machine and human intelligence, which will replace human intelligence as the primary power on the planet
George Dvorsky. Producer of the award-winning Sentient Developments blog and podcast, and co-founder and president of the Toronto Transhumanist Association.
Interface technologies that bridge the gap between the human brain and the internet. In twenty years, our interaction with the web will be so seamless that it will be considered an exosomatic organ. Implications include ubiquitous access to all knowledge stores on the net and "techlepathy.
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