Technological Advances Transcend Human Capabilities
Here we are, already in 2020! The year of ‘better vision.’ This would be the year to make that term your new year’s resolution, don’t you think? And at RedFOX Labs, we chose the literal meaning. Our renewed focus, our new vision, is digital inclusion.
You see, technology plays a vital and necessary role in our everyday lives. And, beginning with Southeast Asia, we want to provide everyone with access to the latest achievements in human invention.
For us, that means a slight pivot in direction. You see, RedFOX once adhered ourselves to the blockchain. However, we’re now exploring broader, complementary technologies. Blockchain tech, while revolutionary, works best in conjunction with the likes of AI, robotics, and more.
Today we’ll take a look at what the future holds for technology at large. Although the last decade saw enormous leaps in tech’s capabilities, it’s all v1.0 compared to what’s in store.
Of course, everything depends on your POV — some yearn for simpler times, untethered from smartphones and social media. That said, we think you’ll agree that 2020 is a super thrilling time to be alive!
Let’s examine a few steps in tech evolution along with what humankind can expect to enjoy in the coming decades. Got your spacesuit and helmet ready? Put them on!
When Sci-Fi Becomes Reality
The iconic Star Wars series has given us some memorable characters. Perhaps the most intriguing of all? Droids. You know you want one!
Loyal, code-breaking, data-storing, welding, hologram-projecting, circuit-repairing, laser-blasting, chess-playing, starfighter-piloting, multi-language translating, joke-cracking robots are highly valuable companions.
And with the right builds, our Robo-buddies can even mop the hardwood floors and vacuum the carpets. Who doesn’t like completing mundane chores by pressing a button and walking out of the room?
The good news is that these semi-autonomous buckets of plastic and metal live in the here and now. Well, stripped-down versions, at least.
Now, before we peer into the future, let’s take a quick step back to imagine how these inventions came to be. After all, without human ideation, most creations fail to launch.
A full decade and a half before anyone had felt The Force, a futuristic cartoon called The Jetsons was forecasting technological breakthroughs.
This animated entertainment birthed plenty of real-life inventions. Present-day realities envisioned by old-school illustrations include drones, flying cars, 3D-printed food, moving walkways (flat escalators), and voice-activated assistants.
Which only goes to show — nearly anything humans can dream up, humans can eventually create.
Here’s a small sampling of even more tech revelations foreseen by Jetsons cartoonists almost 60 years ago:
Rosie the humanoid robot was an absolute marvel of engineering and AI. She could put a family-style dinner on the table in minutes, after handling all of the day’s household chores. Rosie even had actual feelings that could be hurt. Her AI chipset was uber–advanced.
Today’s robotic minions — working as butlers in select Japanese and Californian hotels — aren’t quite there yet. They’re slow and short and aren’t exactly agile. But those limitations are sure to be overcome soon.
Plus, as we’ll explain a little farther down the page, aspirations for robotic helpers extend well beyond the confines of Earth itself.
Predating the Internet, the Jetsons family — along with a boisterous, intrusive, Napoleonesque boss — were communicating via wireless video.
Yes, the iWatch revealed itself in the early ’60s. It just took multiple decades before the technology finally caught up with the idea.
“Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi, you’re my only hope.” R2 may have projected Leia’s message to Ben, but The Jetsons toyed with the technology well in advance of Luke drinking blue milk and basking in binary sunsets on Tatooine.
When the holidays rolled around each year, George and Judy Jetson didn’t fuss with the process of selecting, hauling, decorating, watering, and disposing of a tree. Instead, their yuletide symbol of celebration was holographic.
Thankfully, after this iconic cartoon series left the airwaves, others with grander visions picked up the torch.
The Path to Everlasting Life
The tech on display within The Jetsons was far ahead of its time. Some of the original concepts, however, came about long before the world saw its first pictures in motion.
Such iterations and refinements are part of what makes technology so magical. Once a breakthrough occurs, human minds discover ways to destroy physical and mental barriers to spawn new inventions.
Take holograms, for example. What began as dim, flickering sideshow attractions transformed into hyper-realistic effigies of deceased performers.
In 2012, concertgoers witnessed an illusion of a familiar, ghostly presence. An on-stage effigy appears to perform with the living. Yet what we’re seeing is the reflection of an image projected onto an angled piece of glass.
Holographic images are impressive, no doubt, and a remarkable mechanism for immortalizing the departed. But what’s especially interesting about this trickery is the age of conception.
A long time ago, in an era far, far away — 1558 to be exact — Italian scientist Giambattista della Porta wrote Magia Naturalis, in which he described what would ultimately become the hologram.
Today, recording artists’ likenesses can live for eternity. And thanks to modern holographic technology, showgoers can feel as if they’re watching a live performance. Now imagine creating a hologram of yourself for encapsulation and passing its messages down to familial generations. Let’s hope you’re not seeking freedom fighters to join interplanetary skirmishes!
However, before all of these transformative creations came into our lives, massive advances needed to occur within many different industries. Several decades ago, a few MB of data storage meant stuffing an entire building with hardware. Not exactly something to carry around on your wrist!
Point is, it took humans centuries to develop some of the technology dreamt up to make our lives extraordinary. Thankfully, today’s technology evolves at a much faster pace. Plus, the lastest emerging tech — in particular, AI, blockchain, and robotics — have ventured incredibly far from their humble beginnings.
For RedFOX, our journey into all three frontiers is only beginning. And, although physical robots have yet to enter our technological repertoire, the virtual type is setting up shop in one of our next products.
The Friendly(?) AI Invasion
Conceptually, the electronic, self-learning brain began when classical philosophers equated human thought to a machine that manipulates symbols.
But the definition of modern-day AI arose in 1950 when Alan Turing invented a test to determine whether or not a machine can “think.” So long as a device carries a conversation indistinguishable from a person, we consider it artificially intelligent.
Turing’s test specified the idea of what’s possible. And today, we have multiple instances of machines and algorithms passing his test with flying colors. From voice-activated search results to digital analytics and innovations in same-day shipping, AI is becoming increasingly potent and commonplace.
RedFOX Labs is excited to use AI in our upcoming cashback and rewards app. A new partnership enables us to bolster future products with self-learning, customer-obsessed assistants.
In the spirit of digital inclusion, Misfit Technologies’ AI chatbot — Alice — is on call 24/7 to hold users’ hands through virtually any issue they may encounter. Entering SEA’s oversized digital economy needn’t be difficult — and Alice helps ensure even Internet newcomers enjoy a seamless experience.
Looking ahead, AI has no choice but to increase its prowess exponentially. After all, AI thrives on data. The more data humans create — the more we oil the gears of machine learning — the smarter AI becomes.
Eventually, artificially intelligent cyborgs unite and take over the planet. Just kidding… or are we? You tell us. The jury’s still out on that one.
When Earth’s Moon is Too Close
The field of robotics has roots in ancient Greek mythology. The concept — inanimate objects displaying consciousness — was also prevalent in ancient China, Egypt, and India.
While early cultures emphasized earthbound tasks, the team at NASA wants to put robots in orbit. And not just the type designed to scrape barnacles off the sides of spaceships.
There’s a saying that goes, “you can’t read the label from inside the jar.” In other words, being too close to something makes it difficult to see the big picture.
In that spirit, NASA conducted a 3D-printed habitat challenge with $3.15 million offered as an incentive. The competition’s goal is to have outside teams concoct methods for sending robots to Mars in advance of humans.
Upon arrival, the bots must mine for resources before constructing astronaut accommodations. Here are some ideas from one of the noteworthy entrants:
Though the trip to Mars remains in the blueprint phase, it’s not outside the realm of possibility. But you won’t catch any of us making that one-way trip! Our home planet — especially here among the tropical jungles and blue oceans of Vietnam — is too beautiful to leave.
Visualizing Our Not-too-distant Future
After choosing between music or gentle vibration the night before, your sleep-position-monitoring, self-adjusting bed riles you from slumber. Soon after, your faithful Robo-companion enters the room to greet you and confirm the day’s agenda.
Within minutes of placing your order, the mechanical companion returns with a hot plate of nutritionally optimized, 3D-printed breakfast — including a cup of your taste buds’ favorite coffee served somewhere between 120–180°F.
During the meal, your 7G smartphone projects a holographic, AI-powered, multi-touch dashboard containing video and text messages, blockchain-verified news, digital-asset portfolio performance, and all of your body’s vital signals.
After leaving the mess for your robot to take care of, you enter the bathroom for a quick shower. While inside, you bite down on a mouthpiece containing microbots that quickly clean your teeth more thoroughly than any human hygienist.
On the bed awaits a freshly steamed outfit laid out by your mechanized butler. At the door, you slip into shoes that auto-conform to variations in terrain as well as levels of blood flow in your feet.
Your out-of-town meeting sends you to the nearest magnetic hyper-terminal. Forgoing the flying taxi ride, you hop into the back seat of your self-driving, solar-powered vehicle. Your phone projects a holographic dashboard into the space between the front and back seats.
Now it’s time to play games, watch videos, read a book (turning pages by swiping in the air), conduct business, or catch up with old friends. As you pull out of the driveway, you notice one of the yard bots keeping things tidy.
Your robotic chauffeur arrives at the terminal, lowering as all four wheels shift inward to maximize the surface area of metal facing the track. After the safety walls slide into place, tightly synchronized, alternating magnetic pulses — positive, negative, positive — simultaneously push and pull the transport along at 333 miles per hour.
The 105-mile trip from San Diego to Long Beach takes less than 20 minutes, freeing you to concentrate on what’s most important on a personal level.
Are you beginning to see the common denominator among these current and future technologies? If not, we’re happy to fill you in: it’s time.
You may be asking yourself, “but what about effort and money?” If so, you’re right on point. Less effort = more time. More money = more time to spend on things that don’t revolve around making money.
Ultimately, technology exists as a means to save time—humankind’s most precious resource.
As an interconnected, ever-expanding global society, technology is the glue binding us all together. And at RedFOX Labs, we use emerging technology to build ventures that push industries in new directions.
Take our upcoming NFT videogame, for example. All of the game’s logic occurs on the blockchain, which is an industry first. When all gameplay is consensus-verified and validated, cheating removes itself from the equation.
Less cheating equates to, again, time not spent on shaking fraudsters out of the ecosystem. You see, while we enjoy experimenting and disrupting legacy business models, we use tech to find better ways of accomplishing tasks.
Technology has yet to reveal its full potential, and maybe it never will. But unless individuals and organizations continue to poke and prod and stress-test, we’ll never know for sure.
And, here at RedFOX Labs, we intend to keep exploring ways of giving everyone the chance to experience technology’s digital wonderland.