IBM’s annual list of technological innovations for next 5 years is mind-reading computers.
Apple, Google and Microsoft are already investigating voice-controlled gadgets – or gadgets controlled by moving your body in front of a camera. But IBM thinks the tech giants might be a little shortsighted – and predicts that mind-controlled computers will be on the market within five years. The company’s researchers are studying how to link a person’s brain to a device like a smartphone or laptop. “You would just need to think about calling someone, and it happens,” IBM says. The company also predicted that by 2016, passwords would have disappeared. IBM sees us using multifactor biometrics for personal identification, through systems that aggregate retinal, voice and other unique physical characteristics. Computer makers such as Alienware already use ‘biometric’ security – where laptops recognise people via biometric markers such as the shape of their face – which does away with the need for complex passwords. Within five years, the forecast will affect the entire world, IBM insists, as the current digital divide fades away, thanks to mobile technology.
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