A new generation of machines that learn, adapt, sense, and experience the world as humans do through the five basic human senses is one of the technologies highlighted in IBM researchers' annual report on the five biggest technologies for the next five years. The report also predicts that in five years industries such as retail will be transformed by the ability to "touch" a product through a mobile device.
IBM researchers also think computers will be able to examine images and help people understand the 500 billion new photos that are taken every year. By 2017, a distributed system of clever sensors will detect elements of sound such as sound pressure, vibrations, and sound waves at different frequencies, the report predicts. The system also will be able listen to its surroundings and measure movements, or the stress in a material, to warn of danger.
IBM also predicts that one day "baby talk" will be understood as a language, telling parents or doctors what infants are trying to communicate. In addition, IBM researchers are developing a computing system that experiences flavor, which will be used in collaboration with chefs to create new recipes.
From Network World
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