Just Science Fiction, Right?

If the emerging technology curve approaches anything like the kind of acceleration predicted by such futurists as Kurzweil, Watson, and Kelly, the issues discussed in this chapter will become central to designing new digital services over the next few years. As designers and technologists we must ensure that we are prepared for the next wave or we might find ourselves left behind. The revolution is only just beginning.

Key Questions to Consider

  • 1. What kind of learning systems will be needed to take complexity and strangeness away from the users of these services?
  • 2. What kind of services that predict and even meet our needs without us having to intervene will be the ones that resonate and find an audience?
  • 3. How will embeddables be designed so that they blend invisibly with the body? How will we avoid looking like the Borg in Star Trek, or becoming socially inept when we begin putting technology onto the surface and inside our bodies?
  • 4. What is the timeline for the embeddable revolution, and what do tech companies need to do to prepare for this future?
  • 5. What are the new types of control mechanisms and interaction metaphors that we are collectively going to have to consider for these types of intangible interfaces?
  • 6. What skills will designers need to learn as we move away from a visual craft to one that takes into account the other senses, the body, and the mind?

[122] Young Sohn, Samsung chief strategy officer at MobileBeat 2013, San Francisco (http://bit.ly/1CJ3Lwf)

[123] what Technology Wants! by Kevin Kelly (Viking, 2010)

[124] «I think it’s reasonable to suppose that one could oscillate between being biologically 20 and biologically 25

indefinitely.” — Aubrey de Grey, 2005

[125] Dr. Alan Kwan, M.Sc., Ph.D. Bioinformatics, Computational Biology, Washington University and MIT

[126] Paintable circuits on the skin, developed by Bare Conductive, UK.

[127] «Epidermal Electronics” Paste Peelable Circuitry On Your Skin, Just Like A Temporary Tattoo, Popular Science

Magazine, Nov 2011.

[128] Stamp-On Circuits Could Put Your Phone On Your Finger, FastCo Design, Nov 2013.

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