Will we continue to produce smaller and smaller gadgets? Will Google rule the World? Will the internet get faster and faster? I've always wanted to ask these questions, here's my take on some of this, please do comment, I'm really interested to know what you guys think!
First of all, size. I mean the iPhone looks great (why they left 3G out of the first one is a mystery), it performs great, but personally, I have about as much use for it as my old Nokia 3310. Whatever people say, I can't browse the web properly on a monitor the size of my palm. Sure, some apps are great, like Remember the Milk and whatnot, but I have no chance of working from an iPhone, the only thing it can be used for efficiently is some light browsing and movie playing on the go. For me the iPhone is an extremely cool phone, but just a phone.
Laptops have been getting smaller and smaller as well, with the new mini Notebooks. However, these aren't really powerful, and the monitor is again, very small. I can't help but look upon these notebooks as travel accessories, better they steal my $350 EEE PC, than my $1,500 Thinkpad. Don't get me wrong, these notebooks are great as well, but they don't serve such a general purpose as their bigger brothers.
So where is the industry going to go? People like me who work on their laptops and need at least 12" - 14" will be left wanting for a while. Short of wiring the thing into my brain (I'd love to type with my thoughts) I think the "easiest" way things will become smaller is they will be foldable. They've already made some advances, sheet thin monitors you can roll up and so on. I mean 50% or my laptop is the monitor, the other 30% is the keyboard. I've already seen projected keyboards, coupled with a foldable monitor you could put the thing in your coat pocket.
My other question is, how fast can the internet get? There is only such a speed at which speed actually matters. After internet bandwidth (and laptop speed) surpass human perception speeds the bandwidth won't matter for the average user. However where will they take this next? Will we be using the internet to transport objects Start Trek style? Will we have holo-projectors instead of webcams? In the end you wouldn't need a laptop, you can project the image of one (as small or as big as you want) and coupled with motion sensors, use it without it actually being there.
Also, where will Google be in 20 years? Will Sergey Brin and Larry Page be sitting on Mars in a throne dedicated to their wisdom? I doubt it, but how far can they expand? It seems like whatever they touch turns to gold, 90% of all their products are awesome, surpass any other commercial producer, and they give us all these things for free. Will they keep their position as the rulers of the search engine market, will someone come up with something better? With microtagging and web semantics building up, I think they just might face some opposition, although I think they're working on their stuff all the time, and they don't seem to be afraid of change, so they'll be tough to crack.
What do you think about all this? In 20 years will I be typing on the head of a needle and looking at a monitor the size of my left kidney cell? Will I be teleporting out of an internet connection near you? And finally, will I be paying my bills to the all-ruling Google?
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.