By 2030, how will AI influence the typical North American city? A team of experts created as part of century-long research on AI’s impact believes it will have far-reaching consequences.
Eric Horvitz, a technical fellow and managing director at Microsoft Research, is the brains behind the One Hundred Year Study on Artificial Intelligence.
A group of experts will examine the present status of AI and its potential directions every five years. The first group, which included specialists in artificial intelligence, law, political science, policy, and economics, was formed last autumn and opted to focus their research on the effect AI would have on the ordinary American city. Here are their predictions for how it will alter eight major aspects of city life over the next fifteen years.
More than half of the world’s population presently lives in cities, but by 2045, that number is predicted to climb to 68 percent. ENGIE commissioned Tractebel to do research on the cities of the future in 2030 to identify and understand the difficulties that its customers would face in 2030.
The goal is to provide them with greater assistance. The analysis, which was conducted before Covid-19, identifies future risks, possibilities, and areas of resilience. These lessons are especially important in the event of a pandemic.
ENGIE commissioned our urban specialists to map the worldwide urban scene for 2030 to better predict future solutions. The research describes societies and the hazards they confront in their various aspects – demographic, environmental, economic, geopolitical, social, technical, and geographical – by mapping significant trends in the world’s cities. The report includes a plethora of data, forecasts, and analyses to aid in the development of a long-term plan over the next decade.
It was carried out before the public health crisis, but it has become much more important now due to its examination of approaches to create resilience in the face of pandemic hazards. A global city, knowledge city, cultural city, industrial city, resort city, historical city, administrative city, mega city, and local city are the nine urban profiles that have been defined.
1. Roombas With a Sense of Humor
The robotic revolution has already begun, but the ultimate goal of robot designers throughout the globe is to populate the earth with humanoid robots, as shown in science fiction films.
They’ll take on the job of personal assistants at home — to aid with housework, for example — and in public settings, where they’ll provide tourist information or assist with shopping. The REEM robot, created by PAL Robotics in Spain, is seen above. It’s already out there, and it might offer you a glimpse of what’s to come in the future.
It includes a touch screen for displaying information and can have rudimentary conversations in places like shopping malls, museums, and airports, replying to inquiries.
2. There’s No Need to Get Out of Bed
Your bed will have a new connection in the future. It’s so much better that you may never want to leave.
Italian designer Edoardo Carlino created the Hi-Can (High Fidelity Canopy) bed. Automatic black-out shades, a built-in PC and HD projector at the foot of the bed, and complete wifi capability to control other gadgets in your house are all available in the lair. You may change the lighting and sound around the home without having to move a single step.
On its website, the business claims that the design was inspired by today’s “desire to have everything near to you, in total comfort, when excessive tension, worry, and anxieties mount over the day.”
Perhaps not the ideal choice for your body, but virtual reality headsets like the Oculus Rift, which Facebook just purchased for nearly $2 billion, are poised to become more popular.
3. Buildings That Are Alive and Well
Buildings might be organically engineered to remove carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere over the next 40 years. This artist’s impression depicts the possibilities of award-winning architect Richard Hyams’ vision for London’s “breathing skyline.”
Rachel Armstrong of the University of Greenwich is using synthetic biology methods to create “protocells” that conduct basic chemical reactions when they come into contact with CO2, capturing the gas and preventing it from ascending into the environment. They may one day be integrated into normal paint; one conceivable response is the formation of limestone, which might mend wall cracks or provide insulation.
To decrease surface water, some urban designs, such as the Bo02 project in Malmo (Sweden), integrate plants into walls and roofs. And MIT architect Carlo Ratti is designing algaetecture, or algal canopies, for use in buildings to absorb CO2 while also producing biomass for use as food.
4. A City That Is Built Vertically
According to SURE Architects, the brains behind the “Endless Cities” concept, a whole metropolis may be contained under a single structure.
Their design for a city in a tower envisions a 300-meter-high skyscraper that would be housed in London and offer spaces to live, work, and relax.
The structure would include two continuous ramps that would span the length of the building and serve as streets containing stores, housing, museums, and even parks. There are also plans for several plazas, and the tower will provide panoramic views of London.
5. It Is Not Planned to Construct Any New Homes
This artist’s impression depicts a future in which dwellings will be printed rather than constructed.
DUS Architects, a Dutch firm, is now working on the construction of one of the world’s first 3D printed homes. Their “Kamermaker” machine creates a sequence of big black blocks that connect to form rooms, finally becoming a 13-room Dutch canal home.
Their current printing medium is bioplastic, which is made up of 80% plant oil, so there’s no need to worry about your house melting since it would take temperatures of 170 degrees Celsius.
The beauty of printing your own house, according to the business, is the creativity and customization that comes with it. “Adding embellishments to, instance, your façade will no longer be more costly or labor difficult,” they claim on their website. Although the technology is unlikely to replace traditional house construction processes, it does seem to have the potential to add some inventiveness to our future dwellings.
6. A Life on the Water!
We may have the option of taking to the seas as the population expands and land space becomes limited.
The Seasteading Institute’s floating city project is currently underway, to construct miniature communities that float in a country’s territorial seas. There were once lofty hopes to found new countries far out at sea, but in truth, we’d all prefer to live close to another metropolis and ride the smoother waves of shallow water.
In recent research, the institution established the feasibility of such a goal, and they are now looking at designs, locations, and even possible consumers.
7. When You’re Moving Faster Than the Speed of Sound, You’re Called a Sound
Is it possible that we’ll be able to move between cities at almost the speed of sound? We could, according to Elon Musk, the man behind Tesla cars and the SpaceX project (who is now a NASA contractor).
Musk’s proposed Hyperloop transportation system could carry people 350 miles in 35 minutes from Los Angeles to San Francisco.
Musk suggests that tubes be erected high above the ground and utilize magnetic levitation technology to move at fast speeds between towns up to 900 miles away without friction or wind resistance. “To travel quickly, you have to be at a high altitude where the air density reduces tremendously,” Musk writes on the Tesla website.
The capsules would fly at a maximum speed of 750 miles per hour, which is quicker than most commercial planes. Inside a projected Hyperloop capsule, passengers would be seated as shown in this cutaway picture.
8. There Is Just One Automobile and No Drivers
A future with automobiles but no drivers seem to be a foregone conclusion, particularly if Google has anything to say about it.
Google has long shown driverless vehicle technology, but in May of this year, they unveiled a prototype of an early version of its self-driving automobile. The automobile has no steering wheel or pedals, instead of relying on sensors and software to do all of the tasks. It can detect things up to 200 yards away in all directions. When anything blocks the car’s path, it slows down, turns, and applies the brakes.
A driver’s license may soon be obsolete, with lots of autonomous chauffeurs available to transport you anywhere you need to go, thanks to prototypes already in use today.
9. With Saltwater, You Can Move Quickly
Is it possible that future automobiles may operate on… saltwater?
Not only does one exist, but it has lately been ruled legal on the streets of many European nations. It’s called the Quant e-sport limousine, and it runs on “redox flow cell batteries,” which utilize saltwater poured from the car’s tanks to power a reaction that creates energy.
The supercar is then propelled at high speeds by motors connected to each wheel. The automobile has a driving range of 600 kilometers, according to Nanoflowcell, however current designs are prototypes.
The expected expense of the e-sports limousine, like that of Tesla, the more well-known electric supercar of today, means that not everyone will be driving it along our future streets, but as technology progresses and becomes more popular, the power of salt water may be putting more of us on the road.
10. Autonomous Vehicles Transport Us to Our Destinations
In the future city, the border between private and public transportation will blur as autonomous cars convey us to our destinations.
The Skytrain transportation system will consist of two-person pods that will use magnetic levitation to traverse a network in the sky. The current demonstration location for SkyTran’s pilot personal rapid transit (PRT) transportation system is the Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) facility on the outskirts of Tel Aviv.
These unidirectional pods will be housed in a set of stations and tracks high above a city’s skyline providing quick transit with a view.
Jerry Sanders, the company’s CEO, sees a future in which you may order a personal sky vehicle from your smartphone, which would come at a place of your choosing and lift you 20 feet above the earth to get you to your destination.
11. Drones, Drones, and Even More Drones!
Drones are destined to take over the sky in the future, from pizza delivery to search and rescue missions.
There are various questions about how to control the usage of these devices, with privacy being one of the most pressing problems, but some exciting initiatives are already in the works.
Google and Facebook both want to employ solar-powered drones to deliver internet access to rural locations and the billions of people who now lack it.
These pilotless planes will cruise for months at a time, at altitudes significantly higher than commercial jets, between 60,000 and 90,000 feet.
12. Drinks With a Technological Twist
As we incorporate more technology and social media into our lives, bar-hopping will shift. Robotic bartending systems will create your tailored drink mixes, allowing you to utilize your smartphone to better control your lifestyle.
Carlo Ratti, an inventor, and architect, has previously created an early prototype, which is named Makr Shakr. It consists of a set of robotic arms that behave like a bartender. “The system examines the new dynamics of social production and consumption — ‘design, create, and enjoy,” according to the startup.
But won’t we miss a human bartender’s amusing banter? Rather than eliminating human contact, the goal is to encourage social engagement by allowing users to exchange connections, recipes, and images as they drink.
13. Your Brand-new, Shape-shifting Residence
What if you could have the equivalent of a 3,000-square-foot home in only 1,000 square feet? One of the aims of the Hyperbody group at the University of Delft is to achieve this.
Their “Pop-up Apartments” will turn cramped city life into one of space and comfort by producing shape-shifting apartments that change from living to dining space, and more, at the touch of a button — or via your phone.
The walls and furniture will be erected on a series of automated tracks that will allow you to reconfigure them according to your requirements. “By 2030, the home will move beyond this concept of being a shelter and will be more in touch with what goes on in your head to adapt to your requirements,” says project design lecturer Dr. Nimish Biloria.
14. Power Without the Need for Cables
A future without wires is unquestionably possible. Wireless chargers are currently available, and wireless internet is practically universally available. So ‘WiTricity,’ a wireless kind of power now being created by a start-up of the same name, is next on the schedule.
Magnetic resonance, which employs a magnetic field to transmit power between a source and a target device without wires, is expected to be used in the technology.
With laptops, cellphones, and TVs, the business has already shown that this is feasible, and they envisage a future in which smartphones charge in your pocket, electric vehicles charge while parked in the driveway, and domestic appliances work seamlessly with no cables to trip over.
15. Streetlights Powered by Jellyfish
If the Genetic Barcelona Project goes according to plan, actual trees may light up our walkways at night.
The Genetic Architectures group at the Universitat Internacional de Catalunya wants to introduce the bioluminescent genes that allow jellyfish to shine into three genomes. Their goal is to develop a long-term replacement for streetlights, which now rely on power to lead us home when the sky darkens.
To date, ornamental plants have been created, and if technology advances, there might be a bright future ahead.
16. New Energy, Old Icons
For greater energy efficiency and a more sustainable future, old sites throughout the world are being updated to include modern green technology.
In 2012, the Eiffel Tower was renovated on its first-floor platform to combine solar energy for heating, wind energy, hydraulic energy, rainwater recovery, and LED lighting.
Other sites, such as the Taj Mahal, are also following suit in reducing their carbon impact. In 2008, the Vatican set the precedent by adopting solar energy, demonstrating that even ancient structures can learn new skills.