Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Prepare for the Future Today

We read today about the potential future of mobiles from two different and diverse sources our good friend and futurist Ray Hammond and the NY Times.

Imagine a hands free phone where you talk through speech recognition , see images through special contact lenses and project images from the phone onto screens. Is this fantasy or reality, available today or technology that has to be adapted for use?

A voice recognition service from Vlingo in the US now people talk naturally, rather than making them use a limited number of set phrases. The system is being tested at AT&T and Sprint and consumers with certain mobiles from those companies can now download the application.

A rival application is being tested from , Yap Inc and Nuance started its Nuance Voice Control system last year and is in use at Sprint and Rodgers and can be downloaded today to 66 mobile models. Thanks to its acquisition of TellMe Networks last year Microsoft is also in the voice recognition service space. With obvious applications such as GPS and in car ‘hands free’ the voice recognition world can only grow.

We then look to the future and read about engineers at the University of Washington who manufactured microscopic scales to combine a flexible, biologically safe contact lens with an imprinted electronic circuit and lights.

Imagine reading a book through your lenses? Now there is the ultimate ebook reader a virtual display screen that only you would be able to see.

Imagine your mobile phone having a built in projector that could throw an image up to 50 inches wide.

The PicoP projector is here today and uses tiny lasers to project low definition images in a sharp 800x 600 SVGA at a 60 HZ refresh rate. The PicoP is ‘green’ and conserves energy by only turning on the lasers when it needs them and will turn off the Red and Blue lasers. Microvision said consumers could see PicoP-enabled phones as early as 2008.

OK so you take your phone to bed and project your ebook onto the wall.
All the above demonstrate that technology is being developed and adapted that will change how we work, communicated and do things. The key to all publishers in all media is having the digital content and context to be able to respond to the future.