It was less than 100 years ago that we discovered information can be transmitted using the numbers one and zero, which triggered a digital explosion; coupled with silicone chip development. The computer has been developing at an alarming rate, with quad-core processors the size of your thumb and if you think we’ve almost reached the pinnacle of what we can with computers, think again!
So, you thought nothing could travel faster than the speed of light! Wrong! Quantum entanglement proves that communication can occur instantly, even across millions of light-year distances. This can be harnessed for digital communication; there are already quantum computers; huge machines with copper water cooling pipes, and one quantum computer can process more than 100 of our top silicone-based computers. How is this possible? With a regular computer, a bit (small amount of data) must either be a one or a zero, whereas, with quantum computing, a bit can be one or a zero! This extra ability is a game-changer, expect to see quantum computers on the market soon; light speed was very much a ceiling for computing, yet we have now found a way to far exceed 186,400 miles per second (the speed of light).
5G and more
Elon Musk is quietly sending up 56 low-orbit 5G satellites with the eventual aim to cover every square metre of the plane with 5G connectivity. Wireless data transfer will remove the need for fibre optics eventually, perhaps within 20 years. 6G,7G and so on will be leaps ahead; we already have real-time video anywhere on the planet.
Business in the digital age
Let’s look at a physio clinic; they would use state-of-the-art occupational therapy software that is designed around their needs, reducing the workload on reception staff. Their appointment system would be fully automated and patients can book via the phone, clinic website or from an app; there is software for HR, accounts, sales, service and customer support. Businesses across the board are benefitting from sector-specific software that streamlines their business processes and why not?
Perhaps the biggest development so far, AI is a game-changer and even at this early stage, AI is behind the scenes, managing large systems and learning as it goes. Elon Musk has been very vocal about the need for regulation within the AI sector; indeed, some pessimists say that AI will be the last invention for mankind – there is a potential for harm to society from AI.
The digital road is long and we have only just got on the rails; Buckle up – it’s going to be a wild ride!
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