The period between the end of the old year and the beginning of the new one is considered optimal for drawing up past evaluations and making forecasts for the future. These evaluations and forecasts become even more interesting if, instead of data and statistics of various kinds, they focus on technologies, currently emerging, which could soon prove to be fundamental for our future.

The MIT (Massachussets Institute of Technology in Boston) did not want to exempt itself from this tradition and has compiled a list of technologies that could revolutionize our life habits in the near future. This list, which I have divided into two groups for the sake of convenience, is based on 10 emerging technological areas and is proposed below in an order of importance linked above all to personal interest and therefore purely subjective:

Messenger RNA vaccines – It is a technology that has been in the works for about 20 years and that seemed to promise interesting news in the scientific field. The outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic has prompted scientists and technicians of the most prestigious biotech companies to develop vaccines based on these new Messenger RNA technologies, which until now had not yet been used for therapeutic purposes. If the light appears to be seen at the end of this dark pandemic tunnel, it is therefore due to the consolidated use of these new technologies. In the near future we must expect that this technology will further transform medicine, leading to the creation of specialized vaccines against variuos infectious diseases (inluding malaria) or for genetic corrections for therapeutic purposes (including sickle-cell disease and HIV) or to fight certain types of cancers.

Digital Contact Tracing – As the coronavirus began to spread, it felt at first that digital contact tracing could actually help us. Smartphone apps, based on GPS and Bluetooth technology , should have created records of the people met and, in the event of a positive result at Covid, automatically would alert people recently contacted. Some organizational difficulties and the lack of efficient updating of the registers led to the failure of these initiatives. But digital tracing technology itself is a winning technology, as in the near future it could be applied to other design experiences not only for healthcare, but also for security, marketing or entertainment purposes.

TikTok Algorithms – Since its launch in China in 2016, TikTok has become one of the world’s fastest-growing social networks. The main reason lies in the TikTok algorithms, which are strongly inclined to make the creator of the content come out of anonymity, creating a community that leads, quickly, to thousands of views and the creation of its own niche of particular interest and identity. The future involves the search by other social media companies for similar algorithms that can counter its current dominance.

Lithium-metal batteries – In general, the automotive industry is moving towards the massive use of electric engines, which need a fair amount of electricity stored in special batteries. Current lithium-ion batteries reach autonomy of a few hundred kilometers and recharge times of a few tens of minutes. It goes without saying that the challenge of the future will be entirely based on increasing the autonomy of the batteries and the speed of recharging. A Silicon Valley start-up now says to have prototyped a lithium-metal battery capable of increasing vehicle range by 80% and being recharged faster than current batteries. The Start-up boasts a deal with VW group (Volkswagen), which in turn has confirmed the sale of vehicles, equipped with these batteries, from 2025.

Green hydrogen – All nations have now become aware of the problems of climate change; therefore, to reduce its effects, it is necessary to set the goal of a drastic reduction in the use of fossil energy worldwide. Hydrogen has always been an intringuing possible replacement for fossil fuels. It is energy dense and it burns cleanly, without emitting harmful residues (e.g. Carbon dioxide or other). The only flaw has always been its finding, up to now entrusted to natural gas fields or to too expensive construction processes. The rapidly dropping cost of natural energy (e.g. solar and wind) is involving the construction of electrolytic plants to produce hydrogen directly from water, in an economic and sustainable way. The future could therefore also be based on alternative fuels and not just on electricity.

In summary, the fruits we will reap in the future are the seeds we are planting in the present.


ACTION ICT (January 2022)

ACTION ICT is a young, dynamic and innovative IT company. It operates, both nationally and internationally, offering professional skills and design solutions in the ICT field to medium and large businesses. Our highly skilled know-how is housed in three expertise specific departments: ACTION DATA (Big Data Analytics and Artificial Intelligence), ACTION APP (Web & Mobile Application) and ACTION IOT (Internet of Things and Robotics).

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