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IBM predicts some VERY smart phones in the near future

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
December 18th, 2012
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Many people today are totally wired into their Smartphones for communication and quick, easy information. That relationship may soon become even all more encompassing. Computer giant IBM sees a not-so distant future world where Smartphones will be able to hear, feel, taste and touch - virtually all five senses that human beings enjoy.

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - IBM theorizes that this super computer gizmo will be with us as early as the year 2018. 

"Infrared and haptic technologies will enable a smart phone's touch screen technology and vibration capabilities to simulate the physical sensation of touching something," IBM says.

"So you could experience the silkiness of that catalog's Egyptian cotton sheets instead of just relying on some copywriter to convince you.

"It's amazing when you look back over the 60+ years of the computing revolution and see how far we have come in such a relatively short time,' IBM's Bernard Meyerso says.

"The first electronic programmable computers, built in the 1940s, were essentially really fast electronic calculators. Then came the mainframe, the PC, the Internet and social networking. Today, we're entering the era of cognitive computing-machines that help us think."

"One of the most intriguing aspects of this shift is our ability to give machines some of the capabilities of the right side of the human brain.

"New technologies make it possible for machines to mimic and augment the senses."

Sensing machines are currently already with us in self-parking cars and biometric security. It's only just the beginning.

"These five predictions show how cognitive technologies can improve our lives, and they're windows into a much bigger landscape -the coming era of cognitive systems," Meyerso says.

Before sinister nightmare visions of "Colossus: the Forbin Project" begins to dance in some people's minds, Meyerso is quick to allay these fears. "But the point isn't to replicate human brains. We humans are no slouches when it comes to procreation. And this isn't about replacing human thinking with machine thinking. Once again; not necessary.

"Rather, in the era of cognitive systems, humans and machines will collaborate to produce better results-each bringing their own superior skills to the partnership.

"The machines will be more rational and analytic. We'll provide the judgment, empathy, morale compass and creativity."

Among the many advances predicted by IBM and Meyerso:

-- Computer vision may begin to save lives by analyzing patterns to make sense of visuals in the context of big data. A system could gather information and detect anomalies specific to the task, such as spotting a tiny area of diseased tissue in an MRI and applying it to the patient's medical history for faster, more accurate diagnosis and treatment.

-- Computer super hearing will also be able to predict weakness in a bridge before it buckles, the deeper meaning of your baby's cry. By analyzing verbal traits and including multi-sensory information, machine hearing and speech recognition could even be sensitive enough to advance dialogue across languages and cultures.

-- Also in the works is a way to compute "perfect" meals using an algorithmic recipe of favorite flavors and optimal nutrition. No more need for substitute foods when you can have a personalized menu that satisfies both the calorie count and the palate.

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