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Your 2018 Predictions

2018 predictions technology science social politics AI artificial intelligence robotics military

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29 replies to this topic

#1
Yuli Ban

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With the year almost over, it's time to consider what 2018 will bring. 
 
2017-2060

  • At some point during this period, the United States is struck by the most devastating earthquake in its history

2017-2037

  • At some point during this period, a major earthquake hits California

2017-2025

  • Worsening crisis in Yemen 

2018-2048

  • Uganda is an oil-producing nation 

2018

  • A missile defence shield is deployed in Europe
  • The first private supersonic jet
  • The African Central Bank is established
  • East Africa's largest ever infrastructure project
  • South Korean city Pyeongchang hosts Winter Olympics
  • Russia hosts the FIFA World Cup
  • InSight touches down on Mars
  • The James Webb Space Telescope is launched
  • Japan lunar rover mission
  • The Japanese Hayabusa-2 probe arrives at 1999 JU3
  • Completion of the 100,000 Genomes Project
  • Universal flu vaccine
  • Polio has been eradicated
  • A drug to prevent obesity
  • Crossrail opens in London
  • The Transbay Transit Center is completed in San Francisco 
  • Many complex surgeries are performed by robots
  • The NHS begins high-energy proton therapy in England
  • Enterprise-grade SSDs reach 128TB of capacity
  • Consumer devices with 100 Gbit/s transfer speeds
  • Portable, long-range 3D scanning
  • Scientists drill into Earth's mantle
  • The first Hyperloop track is open to the public

My Predictions

  • First test flight of the Falcon Heavy
  • North Korean nuclear test surpasses one megaton in strength
  • North Korea also demonstrates an ICBM that can reach any point on Earth
  • Increased strife in the Middle East due to recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital
  • First commercial use of a passenger drone
  • Increased commercial presence of augmented and mixed reality 
  • Global internet population surpasses 4 billion
  • Economic growth continues, if still sluggish. There will not be a recession
  • Boston Dynamics unveils a new robot or a much more advanced version of a previous robot
  • eSports becomes a billion dollar industry
  • World data approaches 1 yottabyte
  • Generative adversarial networks and neural art is used to create the art for a simple comic book
  • Personalized media creation becomes a fledgling industry because of GANs
  • Massive increase in number of hospital robots
  • Voice synthesis approaches perfect human replication
  • Virtual reality begins enhancing the real estate and tourism markets
  • As VR headsets continue entering the mass market, more mainstream and niche news organizations and websites begin adding VR functionality
  • Smart speaker assistants will begin augmentation, most obviously through a visual add-on that will allow them to see their environments for added functionality
  • Clean meat begins earliest commercialization
  • Continued advancements in NLP, though natural language understanding still lags
  • Market for drones more than doubles
  • Professional drone racing increases in popularity
  • Technology for clean meat is used to experiment with growing food for impoverished countries
  • Personalized advertisements see continued growth, most obviously drawing comparisons to Minority Report
  • Tensor-centric AI accomplishes another breakthrough
  • Chinese AI industry rapidly closes in on its American rival
  • Chinese military reform continues, and the global perception of China's military strength rapidly begins changing
  • Chinese chatbots overtake American chatbots in functionality
  • A major AI company claims to have generalized an altered form of deep learning, allowing it to accomplish and master a wide variety of similar-but-different tasks
  • AI becomes increasingly used for engineering
  • Democrats overperform in the 2018 Midterms due to increasing malaise over Trump's performance
  • Vladimir Putin re-elected Russian president
  • Exoskeletons enter advanced stages of testing in the military, signalling that they're very close to being used in combat situations
  • Number of live CRISPR patients increases rapidly
  • EU military spending increases
  • Chinese investment in Africa grows rapidly
  • AI is used to discover more exoplanets
  • Deep learning becomes commercialized onto smartphones
  • 1 terabyte SD card— originally unveiled in 2016— is finally released to the public
  • Universal quantum computer begins construction
  • Global solar power installation surpasses 100 GW a year
  • Marijuana legalized in more countries, including Mexico and Canada
  • Other hallucinogens are teased for legalization, especially psilocybin
  • Elon Musk delays moon mission, but gives more details on what to expect
  • Model 3 deliveries enter full swing
  • DeepMind details new abilities such as creating content or being able to learn from one game to play another
  • Automation begins picking up as AI abilities increase
  • AI capable of traversing and understanding 3D space accelerates autonomous car development
  • Level 3 autonomy reached in more vehicles

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And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future.


#2
joe00uk

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  • Economic growth continues, if still sluggish. There will not be a recession

Well I wouldn't be too sure about that one.



#3
Yuli Ban

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Bein' conservative. Last year, I predicted that we'd be in the middle of a new great depression right now.


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And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future.


#4
joe00uk

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True, but this time we really are approaching the peak of the capitalist cycle which a lot of economists are saying will be reached some time in the latter half of next year. Of course, who knows, right? But recessions occur every 8-11 years, on average. Certainly something will have happened by the end of 2020.



#5
Raklian

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Senolytic drugs to clear senescent cells from your body, thus reducing many of the ailments normally associated with old age.

 

This may be the first practical anti-aging drug derived from SENS' fundamental research.

 

For reference: https://www.scienced...70609102243.htm


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What are you without the sum of your parts?

#6
TranscendingGod

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India solidifies their position as the fifth largest economy in the world without being dependent on currency fluctuations.

The growth of computation is doubly exponential growth. 


#7
rennerpetey

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Sergio Canavero unsuccessfully preforms a live human head transplant.  The head and body die, but he promises another try at a future date. 

 

Note:  He preformed a transplant on 2 corpses already, not living humans.


John Lennon dares you to make sense of this

Spoiler

#8
Mike the average

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2018: The year of cryptocurrency. Cryptocurrency is probably the wrong term and concept but thats what it will go down as.

Media and the world of finance who are themselves the worst at propagating false economics are in for a completely new set of headaches, beaten at their own game.
'Force always attracts men of low morality' - Einstein
'Great spirits always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds' - Einstein

#9
Zaphod

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True, but this time we really are approaching the peak of the capitalist cycle which a lot of economists are saying will be reached some time in the latter half of next year. Of course, who knows, right? But recessions occur every 8-11 years, on average. Certainly something will have happened by the end of 2020.

 

I hope it's late last year, the longer we wait the longer and more brutal the recession will be.



#10
Jakob

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  • Falcon Heavy demo is successful. First crewed SpaceX flight in the fall, but moon mission is pushed to 2019.
  • Three or more habitable exoplanets are discovered within 20 light years, possibly by TESS.
  • AI gives Starcraft another try in 2018-19 (possibly led by DeepMind). AI wins the match, but it's very close. The human player wins at least one game.
  • Passenger drones are commercially available in Dubai. Services appear in a dozen other cities from 2019-23.
  • Boring Company starts building its first tunnel/hyperloop.
  • Quantum computers have reached at least 5000 qbits.

Let's try the social/political/economics stuff.

  • Republicans hold onto Congress as the tax cut bill starts paying off. Trump's approval rating hovers around 40%.
  • The UK still doesn't leave the EU.
  • Bitcoin crashes hard, but slowly begins to recover.
  • Last time without anybody with a net worth over $1011

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#11
Sciencerocks

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I also think Falcon heavy will be successful

Tess will be successful(fingers crossed). Probably will take to at least November for the first planets to be discovered as it takes some time for everything to get up and running...

Electric cars like Telsa model X will be a huge success.

Wind and solar will keep growing world wide as China will up the stakes to 40gw next year.

Fusion will successful run(probably in china!) for more then 5 minutes.

Anti-aging has been secretly tested on a dog and doubles its life span to 20 years.

A treatment for one or more forms of cancer will be created that will increase survival chances.

Quantum computers will have more breakthrough that will allow for them to be more controllable and more mainstream. I wouldn't discount the idea of 5,000qubits happening. ;)

I think drones will be regulated more and it could slow the use of them in 2018...Ones that humans riding in will be slow but some success could happen.

Sergio Canavero unsuccessfully preforms a live human head transplant. The person lives for at least 3 months! But dies as the body rejects the head.

A huge break through in heart disease is discovered increase life span by double.\

Blue origin launches something into space

Green house emissions go up another 1.5% over the last.

Life span again decreases for the second year in a row.

 

Political

Bitcoins top burst and loses 90% of its value!
The United states senate is tied with Mike Pence being the tie breaker.

The democrats gain 15 seats in the house.

Democrats gain nearly 100 state and house seats nation wide!

North Korea launches a mission that will probably light this up once again. There's a good chance of war! 60%/40 I'll say.

The UK changes its mind and wants to work with the EU as long as they can get agreeable insurance on immigration and local homerule.

Iran threatens war over Trumps actions on the nuclear agreement.

Turkey and most of the middle east threaten war as the United states keeps on shitting on them for Israel.

At least 3 more members close to Trump are indicted or found guilty of crimes against the united states.



#12
TranscendingGod

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India solidifies their position as the fifth largest economy in the world without being dependent on currency fluctuations.

Also Tesla acquires a 70 billion market cap. 


The growth of computation is doubly exponential growth. 


#13
Maximus

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Technology

  • China's Chang'e 4 lunar rover successfully lands on the far side of the moon, sending back important geological data (1).
  • SpaceX's Falcon Heavy maiden flight is a success.
  • SpaceX's Crew Dragon successfully completes its unmanned rendezvous with the ISS, but the manned flight is delayed to early 2019 (2).
  • Boeing's CST-100 Starliner is delayed to early 2019 (3).
  • Tesla fails to achieve its production target of 5000 Model 3 vehicles per week by March, but makes significant progress regardless (4).
  • The US Navy announces major funding cuts to its railgun program, as this program falls out of favour (5).
  • Lockheed Martin's production target of 90 F-35 units is easily met (6).
  • Graphene consumer products become widespread.
  • Gene therapies continue to fall in cost, as treatments for disorders with more patients are developed. A therapy with over 10,000 eligible patients is developed, bringing treatment cost below $200,000/treatment.
  • A team from a research university is able to reproduce Dias' and Silvera's metallic hydrogen results. The material is shown to not be meta-stable, disappearing as pressure is released.
  • More interstellar asteroids are discovered.
  • A woolly mammoth-elephant hybrid fetus is created.

Politics/Society

  • US Democrats win majorities in both houses of Congress. Any major policies Trump has failed to enact by this point are dead in the water until at least the next presidential elections.
  • North Korea's nuclear weapons program continues unabated; this leads to much friction, especially during the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics. Armed conflict with North Korea in the form of a pre-emptive strike is officially ruled out by the Trump administration as it becomes clear that North Korea can accurately strike the US mainland with impunity.
  • Shinzo Abe wins Japan's LDP leadership vote. His push to revise Article 9 of Japan's constitution gains support as North Korea continues to test-launch ballistic missiles around Japan.
  • Putin easily wins the 2018 presidential elections in Russia, despite some concerns from the Kremlin.
  • Brexit begins to fall apart as documents on the projected costs to Britain are revealed to the public. Public opinion is now heavily against Brexit. It's not clear how Brexit can be stopped, but the incumbent Conservative minority government faces the prospect of a vote of no confidence.
  • A number of smaller NATO allies in Eastern Europe and the Baltics answer Trump's call to increase their defence expenditures to a minimum of 2% of GDP.
  • The US opens its embassy in Jerusalem, prompting a number of smaller countries to follow suit in hopes of gaining favour with the US. This leads to a period of violent clashes between Israelis and Palestinians in Jerusalem, as Palestinians announce a 4th Intifada.
  • Erdogan scraps the Turkey-EU migrant deal; southern EU nations are effectively left to deal with the crisis on their own.
  • Oasis are inducted into the 2019 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame (it's done the year before).
  • Germany wins the 2018 FIFA World Cup.


#14
Jakob

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  • SpaceX's Crew Dragon successfully completes its unmanned rendezvous with the ISS, but the manned flight is delayed to early 2019 (2).
  • Boeing's CST-100 Starliner is delayed to early 2019 (3).
  • Tesla fails to achieve its production target of 5000 Model 3 vehicles per week by March, but makes significant progress regardless (4).
  • The US Navy announces major funding cuts to its railgun program, as this program falls out of favour (5).

SAD!



#15
TranscendingGod

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Yeah Maximus both SpaceX and BlueOrigin are going to put people in space next year. I mean when you're investing 1 billion a year like Bezos is you can't seriously expect them to take it slowly. 

 

Elon Musk breaches the top 20 wealthiest in the world. Bangladesh, Indonesia, and other fast growing economies grow in import while fossil fuel dependent economies like Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq, and Russia to a lesser extent continue to wane in the world stage. While these countries continue to provide vast amounts of energy resources to the world writ large it becomes ever more apparent that with China and the United States switching to renewables these countries prosperity is limited to a few more years at most if they fail to diversify. 

 

Argentina wins the World Cup.


The growth of computation is doubly exponential growth. 


#16
Erowind

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Senolytic drugs to clear senescent cells from your body, thus reducing many of the ailments normally associated with old age.
 
This may be the first practical anti-aging drug derived from SENS' fundamental research.
 
For reference: https://www.scienced...70609102243.htm


Keep us to date Rak, if this becomes a consumer product I'll want to buy it. Also, would it even help to use the treatment at a young age or is it not be worth it until the body stops developing?


Current status: slaving away for the math gods of Pythagoras VII.


#17
caltrek

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True, but this time we really are approaching the peak of the capitalist cycle which a lot of economists are saying will be reached some time in the latter half of next year. Of course, who knows, right? But recessions occur every 8-11 years, on average. Certainly something will have happened by the end of 2020.

 

Hard to say.  I definitely do not feel any confidence in any intuitive conclusion that might cross my mind as to precisely how the economy will perform over time.  As Star Trek's Lt. Commander Data would say "there are too many variables."  

 

One thing to consider is effects of the tax cut package recently passed by Congress and signed by Trump.  Whatever faults it might have, I can see a short term stimulative effect for 2018.  Businesses may very well immediately make short-term investment decisions that will help the economy to grow.  Lower taxes that business leaders see themselves as facing will encourage them in that regard.

 

Long term risks are a different story.

 

1) To avoid excessively large deficits, their will be a huge pressure to cut back on government expenditures.  That will be a counter-acting depressant to economic development.  Because of appropriations already in the pipeline, those negative effects will take longer to play out and may not really hit until the end of 2018  at the earliest.

 

2) Despite cuts in spending, things like defense spending will be off limits to severe cuts, meaning that the deficit will balloon out to what some economists consider to be dangerous proportions.  The fear is that such government borrowing will put the squeeze on funds available to be loaned and thus hike up interest rates. Monetary policies can mitigate that negative effect, but that has implications for the strength of the dollar and therefore the price of future imports.  Loss of confidence in the dollar might also have implications for the stability of the international economic system.  

 

3) Even if the worse scenarios of point 2 are avoided, interest payments on the debt will continue to balloon in size over time. This will have implications for long term economic performance.

 

Much of this goes beyond predictions for just 2018.


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#18
caltrek

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I just realized this thread is in the Science and Technology of the Future forum, so let me add a few comments to tie my response above into that theme.

 

Increase investment by the private sector in some case will involve accelerated development of cutting edge technologies.  While offsetting decreases in government spending will have the opposite affect.  Government expenditures, in my experience, are particularly important in transportation infrastructure, drinking water source development and expansion, and wastewater treatment.  I also understand that government investment is important in Research and Development, as in the biology and medicine field.  


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#19
Maximus

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One more:

 

  • The cost of whole-genome sequencing falls below $500/genome (7).

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#20
Zaphod

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So Prince Harry interviewed Demis Hassabis (CEO of DeepMind) on the radio this morning and asked him what he was looking forward to in technological development in 2018.

 

He said he was "looking forward to the first big science breakthrough that couldn't have been done unless you had AI, and I think that may happen in 2018 in a field like biology or chemistry"

 

I'm not sure if this is just something he is hoping for or something he knows about or has been working on. Either way it's  a very probable prediction coming from him.


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