While the look and feel of our cars has changed in the past 100 years, the way we drive them hasn’t. But fundamental change is coming. In the next decade, not only will the way they’re powered and wired have shifted dramatically, but we won’t be the ones driving them anymore.
Your vacuum cleaner that you leave to do its job while you are away is a robot. It senses the world around it and makes driving decisions as it sucks and sweeps.
But your washing machine is not a robot. You tell it how to wash when you select the cycle and it gets on with it. There are grey areas and the definition is debated, but let’s leave it there.
Rightly or wrongly, billions of dollars are being poured into autonomous vehicle research and development to pursue this autopia. However, barely any resource or thought is being given to the question of how humans will ultimately respond to the AV fleet. In a city full of autonomous cars, how might our behaviour and use of city streets change?
Urban planners, technology companies and developers are increasingly looking for ways to improve our lives and make our systems more efficient. If we continue to live as we have, polluting and making our air increasingly toxic, we may have to develop solutions like indoor tracks for dog-walking, à la the Jetsons. But is that what we aspire to become?
As Harry Potter’s encounter with the Whomping Willow reminds us, flying cars can be dangerous. Before futuristic visions of three-dimensional sprawling city traffic can approach reality, there are some serious safety issues that need addressing.
When Chitty Chitty Bang Bang was released 50 years ago, flying cars were a flight of fancy. Now, these futuristic vehicles are entering the outer fringes of reality. According to a new study published in Nature, for some journeys flying cars could eventually be greener than even electric road cars, cutting emissions while also reducing traffic on increasingly busy roads.
The Impossible Burger has been sold in American restaurants since 2016 and is now expanding its market by teaming up with Burger King to create the Impossible Whopper
Today, quantum computing is in its infancy. Quantum computation incorporates some of the most mind-bending concepts from 20th-century physics. In the U.S., Google, IBM and NASA are experimenting and building the first quantum computers. China is also investing heavily in quantum technology.
The Fabrication City concept puts manufacturing back in the hands of communities — using 3D printers. It could have far-reaching implications for economic development, environmental sustainability, inclusion and other benefits. The use of 3D printing provides cities with opportunities through their local innovators and entrepreneurs.