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April 22, 2021

The World in 2050

An interesting look into the disruptions that will happen in our lives and the world by 2050.

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Robots, Computers and Tech

By 2050 artificial intelligence will be everywhere; AI-driven stores will allow you to purchase goods without cashiers or waiting lines. AI will diagnose and treat patients in hospitals, manage transportation, and analyze massive quantities of data when it comes to computing. AI chat BOTS and voice recognition systems will sound like and behave just like real people. Robots will find ways into our daily lives and robot dogs, and other pets will serve as our companions. Robots will dominate factories and serve as teachers, cooks, pharmacists, law enforcement officers, and other professionals. Universal translators will remove all language barriers, and voice recognition will be ubiquitous with sensors installed in our self, devices, clothes, and accessories. Homes will be an overall environment to monitor our well-being and improve our lives. Computing also will change by 2050. We may run on quantum computers based on the properties of quantum physics. Quantum computers could deliver massive leaps in computing power outstripping current transistor-based models. AI and computers will integrate into human bodies. Brain chips like Elon Musk's neural link will treat neurological disorders like Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, spinal cord injury, and Blindness. These brain chips will allow people to control computers, prosthetics with no physical interaction, control things with our minds, and communicate through brain signals. By 2050 robotic prosthetics may be stronger and more advanced than our biological ones. Prosthetic eyes and ears will enter the market to eliminate Blindness and deafness. In 30 years, virtual reality will be everywhere. People will try on clothes in virtual reality closets, and holograms will bring FaceTime to a new level. Various platforms will allow you to move around and travel the world while staying stationary at the comforts of the homes.

The Transportation Revolution

By 2050 the majority of automobiles will be electric. Electric gas stations will be largely replaced with at-home charging stations. Automobiles will become driverless. In addition to Tesla, other companies such as Google have invested billions of dollars into self-driving technology. It is expected that fully autonomous level 5 vehicles will roll out to consumers in the late to mid 2020s and become commonplace by the 2030s and by 2050 people will be hopping into cars with no steering wheel. Thousands of autonomous vans and semi trucks will travel across the country delivering packages and shipments with no human interaction. Drones will do the same for shorter distances. By 2050 swarms of drones will be delivering small packages from floating or vertical Warehouses. There will also be drones implemented for surveillance for security, construction entertainment, and agriculture. Electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft will transform urban transportation to another level. Currently, there are several working prototypes and one of them is Uber who wants to make aerial ride-sharing a reality. If they succeed we could see widespread adoption of the technology and by 2050 cities will likely have air taxis everywhere. Elon Musk believes that the roads must all go the tunnel way in the future. Elon Musk's company is digging small experimental tunnels under cities. If musk can significantly cut down boring costs by 2050, cities will have thousands of tunnels underneath them. Another one of Musk’s brainchild Hyperloop will revolutionize long-distance land transportation. Hyperloop is the idea for vacuum maglev high-speed trains that could attain speeds up to 700 miles per hour. A trip from Los Angeles to San Francisco would be only 43 minutes long compared to a six-hour car ride which it is currently. Airplanes may be replaced with Hyperloop to become the most popular type of long-distance domestic travel. But for travel between continents airplanes will remain dominant. With improved batteries, we could see electric airliners take to the Skies. In addition, several companies are working to bring back supersonic aircraft these aircraft are certainly not airliners but small-scale jets meant to carry only 10 to 100 people. By 2050 we could have Concorde-like but safer supersonic aircraft soaring through the skies or as an alternative to airplanes. What if we traveled around in Rockets by 2050?. Elon Musk wants to use his starship a Rocket to transport people all around the world soon. Musk’s starship could travel from New York to London in only 29 Minutes.

The Energy Upheaval

Our energy system is transforming. Over the past decade, the cost of solar power has plummeted due to economies of scale and improved technology and the price of solar equipment has dropped by 89 percent since 2010. The cost of wind power has plunged as well. Due to these decreases new solar and wind investments are usually cheaper than natural gas and coal investments. However, renewables still have one major setback in energy storage. For utility-scale systems, renewables need a way to store excess energy from windy and sunny days for cloudy and calm days. To help with these researchers are developing new methods to store large amounts of energy. Some examples include storing energy as heat in materials, compressing air, or turning air into a liquid. Although it remains to be seen which method is best these solutions will certainly be implemented for large-scale utility in the future. By 2050 renewables are expected to provide in nearly half of all world electricity. Then there is speculation about fusion power too which is produced from a fusion-powered plasma inside an experimental machine. The walls of the machine will absorb the energy using it to produce steam that will generate electricity with turbines. The first plasma is planned for December 2025 by 2050 we could have fully functional fusion power plants operating more efficiently than any other power source in history.

The Second Space Race

NASA's Artemis program is planning to land humans back on the moon by 2024. After the moon, Nasa wants to send humans to Mars sometime by 2030’s. SpaceX by Elon Musk is developing Starship a rocket that they hope will send humans to Mars by 2024. Once they get there, SpaceX plans to establish a permanent colony in Mars by 2050. Elon Musk plans to have a Martian City with as many as 1 million people. Other space companies such as Blue Origin, Boeing. Lockheed Martin and Virgin Galactic are all racing for space as well. In 30 years we might have a permanent colony on the Moon, Space hotels in the orbit, and humans on Mars.

Food and Biotechnology

By 2050 our food consumption will be wildly different. Currently, livestock contributes to 15% of human greenhouse gas emissions and uses 26% of the Earth's terrestrial surface to feed our growing population. The new diet will move away from meat by assisting it with our meat Alternatives and thus lowering greenhouse gas emissions. Companies like beyond meat and impossible foods have obtained billion dollar valuations for supplying products into the rapidly growing meat alternatives market. in addition plant-based diets as a whole are growing in popularity. Then there is cultured meat. Cultured meat is meat produced by in vitro cell culture. It avoids the slaughtering of animals and produces very minimal emissions. To meet the demand for increased plants in the growing population while escaping the uncertainty of the changing climate Farms will move indoors vertical and into the cityscapes. The vertical farming market is exploding. By 2050 and there will be large-scale vertical farms all around the world feeding the growing population, while using very little land and water. As our food consumption transforms, Biotechnology will advance with prosthetics replacing large organs, stem cells will regenerate injuries and Diseases. Stem cells which can be guided into becoming a wide variety of specific cells will be used for therapies. Eventually like brain chips, stem cell therapies could not only help those with Parkinson's and Alzheimer's but also those with type 1 diabetes heart disease, burns, cancer, arthritis, and all sorts of other diseases. Another biotechnology is gene editing using CRISPR / canine technology scientists can now remove strands of DNA that are causing illnesses and replace them with different ones. In the future scientists hope to cure lifelong inherited diseases with this technology.

Climate Change Solutions

Carbon removal Technologies with Carbon capture and storage will catch carbon emissions from the source and then transport them underground leaving the atmosphere unaffected. Advanced technologies will remove carbon directly from the air and seawater. Additionally some minerals naturally react with carbon dioxide and we can use them to convert carbon from gas into a solid.


All the above content is Copyright of Futurology.
It is difficult to say for sure if all the above innovations will make it into human lives and make it a regular part of life as discussed. But we can be sure that we will see widespread Implementations of these technology-assisted innovations in the near future itself by the way and pace technology and science are evolving. Life will be faster, easier, and more efficient. It is interesting to think about the direction where human efforts may be focused on at that time. In all probability, they will be busy generating newer technologies to make lives easier for their coming generations. Ultimately the fact still remains that the world will change for the better and will change into a cleaner and more eco-friendly one.