Our top 10 tech predictions for 2019 scored a ‘B’, says IEEE CS
In its predictions of the Top 10 Technology Trends for 2019, the organization forecasted deep learning accelerators, assisted transportation, and the Internet of Bodies (IoB) to lead the 2019 technology outlook. Looking back on its 2019 predictions, the IEEE CS scored the successes and shortcomings on its future view, along with analysis of the progress and potential of each predicted technology:
- Deep learning accelerators (Score: A) – Deep learning (DL) accelerators have made a substantial advance through many startups and products already on the market. This is very consistent with DL advances from previous years as well as our prediction.
- Assisted transportation (Score: A/B) – Many vehicles depend on video and image recognition which are enabled by accelerators. While the full autonomous vehicle vision is still in the works, many features are being deployed as assisted functionality.
- The Internet of Bodies (IoB)(Score: B/C) – The movement of the Internet of Things into the IoB continues to progress below the radar of most people. As human bodies become more reliant on the internet for their functionality and safety, these attached or implanted devices used for medical purposes, employment monitoring, and recreation will continue to gain prominence.
- Social credit algorithms (Score: B-) – Social credit algorithms are largely developed away from the public’s attention because of the potential privacy and freedom breaches they represent, but detailed data is required on entire populations to be effective and we are witnessing the increased collection of identifying and behavioral data at country scales.
- Advanced (smart) materials and devices (Score: B/C) – Many of these technologies – such as smart road materials, smart pills, and interactive media – appear in small, local experimental settings, but have not received wide distribution.
- Active security protection (Score: B-) – While active security protection still seems like a good idea, it appears that most of the security mechanisms are still reactive as opposed offering a more dynamic approach – i.e., next generation antiviruses (NGAV) that are able to “strike-back” or even “strike-first” in the case of attack. This year, different companies have announced new products that can be considered NGAV.
- Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) (Score: B+) – Market adoption of VR hardware and content continues to grow steadily, while new headsets are developed with incremental improvements. Behind the scenes, these improvements hint at a potential quantum leap in VR: fully immersive, untethered experience.
- Chatbots (Score: B) – Chatbots are a reality today. The quick uptake is fueled by growing data availability that in turn fuels Artificial Intelligence-based services. The recent progress in Natural Language Recognition and the quality in Speech Syntheses are making chatbot interaction seamless.
- Automated voice spam (robocall) prevention (Score: C) – Our prediction about dramatically improved robocall prevention was based on increasing deployment of features such as call screening, available on recent Google Pixel platforms, in which users can intercept an incoming call with a voice prompt that requires the caller to explain who they are. However, we expected more – not only additional platforms but better automation.
- Technology for humanity (specifically machine learning) (Score: B/C) – This looked like an obvious idea a year ago, and it’s possible that a few companies, universities, or governments have applied machine learning “under the hood” to a humanitarian pursuit, such as identifying a disease or reducing pollution.
Overall, says the organization, while it missed a few predictions it seems to have succeeded in most of them, so the overall score was a “B.”
“The past year has seen tremendous growth in deep learning accelerators and continued increase in the adoption of assisted transportation and augmented/virtual reality,” says Dejan Milojicic, IEEE CS past president (2014). “We have seen a substantial jump in technology innovation this year, leading to our promising technology predictions for 2020, so stay tuned for more from the IEEE Computer Society.”
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