Five surprising things that will happen in the next five years

Illustration for article titled Five surprising things that will happen in the next five years

IBM Research's 5 in 5 list—five things that will happen in the next five years—is here. Some are quite surprising and awesome. The bad news: no flying cars and/or realistic sex robots yet. The good news: doctors routinely using your DNA information to heal you effectively.


But even while that may seem kind of surprising, given the current state of things, their futurists are always pretty accurate—perhaps because they're scientists who base their estimates on actual data rather than dumb planet alignments and tea leaves. So, without further ado, here are five things that, according to them, you will see as normal by 2018.

1. Local retail shopping will beat online shopping.

2. There will be no passwords: computers will just know who you are depending on your tics, habits and environmental information.

3. Doctors will routinely use your DNA information to heal you.

4. Every student will have a customized learning experience, with no grades or syllabus.

5. Cities will automagically adapt to people by monitoring citizens.

How would this all be possible

IBM's futurists believe that these changes will happen because of a dramatic increase in computing power and data compilation about you and your surroundings, all accessed by multiple devices through the cloud. Watch these videos to learn more about this fundamental blocks of change:

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I'm 37 years old and while I would welcome such leaps in humanity I've yet to see such massive changes in such a small amount of time, positive or negative. I'll not be holding my breath and assume the only real change will be to how people send smutty stuff to each other. Oh well.