On Bloomberg, I again bang the drum for cyborg technology:
Marc Andreessen, true inventor of the Internet, noted venture capitalist and Silicon Valley man-about-town, thinks that there are three “next big things” in technology: Bitcoin, online education and health software. Google’s world-conquering execs Larry Page and Sergey Brin have made a bet on the self-driving car, while genius child-emperor Mark Zuckerberg has bet on virtual reality. Now those guys may be titans of tech, but dang it, I’m a sci-fi fan, and I read the news, which means that you should listen to my idea about what the Next Big Technology really is.
I think it’s cyborgs.
“Cyborg technology” includes a number of different things: biomechanical engineering, mind-machine interface, neuroengineering, and a number of other health-care technologies. The common thread is that they all involve the integration of living tissue with engineered machinery. It's not about building the Terminator; it's about improving the functioning of the human mind and body.
Like I said, I read the news. Barely a day goes by when I don’t read about some advance in cyborg tech. For example, a Stanford engineerjust invented a way to safely transfer energy to biomechanical implants. A University of California-San Francisco team won a grant to build brain implants to fight depression and PTSD. There’s a man who can hear colors, thanks to a mechanical implant. Brain-controlled flight is now real. Bionic implants are ending disability as we know it. And these are only a few of the cyborg headlines from the last couple of weeks...