Ever since people first started asking questions about the world we live in, science has been a constant and evolving part of everyday life. Humankind’s insatiable thirst for knowledge has led to many breakthroughs in science and technology, many of which have helped to shape the world we live in today.
In the modern era, we take for granted things like smartphones, super-fast computers, and vaccines, though at one time the technology behind these innovations was unheard of. Because of scientific breakthroughs, these things have become a part of our daily lives.
Just imagine what discoveries will shape our world for tomorrow. The following breakthroughs might have missed the newspaper headlines, but they could ultimately influence the way you and your descendants live in a big way.
1. Earth-like planets discovered
In September 2006 the UK organization SuperWASP (Wide Angle Search for Planets) reported finding its first two extrasolar planets: WASP-1b and WASP-2b. These planets both orbit their star WASP 1 which is located in the constellation Andromeda. SuperWASP exists to locate Earth-like planets that may harbor life and that humans might inhabit one day. As of the time of this writing, SuperWASP has discovered 80 earth-like planets outside of our solar system.
A planet is considered earth-like when it is within the “habitable zone” of the star it orbits. SuperWASP can detect these planets by using specialized telescopes to detect small dips in a star’s brightness. The dip in brightness indicates a planet passing in front of a star.
2. The Sixth Sense
Also in 2006, computer scientist Pranav Mistry developed a wearable computer interface that he called the Sixth Sense.
This device interprets every gesture of the wearer into digital data. In other words, it allows you to manipulate projected images using just your hands. The device includes a pocket projector and camera. The projector projects an interface onto virtually any smooth surface while the camera reads the motions of the wearer’s hands.
This technology has been a staple in sci-fi movies for almost a decade. The device takes the streaming video from the camera and processes it in synchronization with the information taken from the sensors on the wearer’s fingertips. In the future, the technology behind the Sixth Sense may change the way we computer altogether, making physical computers unnecessary.
If you’ve been anxiously waiting the day you could beam up just like Captain Kirk, then that day may be closer than you think. In 2010 scientists at the Joint Quantum Institute at the Maryland University began testing teleportation technology.
So far they have been able to place atoms in separate containers and successfully “transport” information from one atom to another. Although technology is still in its testing phase, the teleportation experiments have garnered attention from all over the world.
As our knowledge of teleportation increases, we could quite possibly live in a future where we can teleport humans, animals, machinery, and other items all over the world. This would make airlines, ships, and even cars less necessary and maybe even obsolete. Teleportation could also affect the way we travel in space as suggested in a much-loved sci-fi television series.
Timothy Bridges is a scientific researcher with over 12 years experience. Visit the storage team at pbmmi.com for more information.