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What the World Will Be Like in 30 Years, According to the ­.s. Government's Top Scientists

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A view of future technologies.

Three researchers at the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency have predicted some major technological advances to arise in the coming decades.

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Three U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) researchers predict major technological advancements during the next 30 years in a new video series.

Machine operation via thought control is one such advance anticipated by Justin Sanchez with DARPA's Biological Technologies Office. "Think about controlling different aspects of your home just using your brain signals, or maybe communicating with your friends and your family just using neural activity from your brain," he speculates. Among the innovations DARPA is developing in this area are neurotechnologies such as brain implants controlling prosthetic limbs.

Meanwhile, Stefanie Tompkins with DARPA's Defense Sciences Office envisions the construction of extremely strong but lightweight structures.

The third scientist, Pam Melroy with DARPA's Tactical Technologies Office, expects a transformation in human-machine interaction by 2045. "I think that we will begin to see a time when we're able to simply just talk or even press a button" to engage with a machine to execute tasks more intelligently, instead of using keyboards or primitive voice-recognition systems, she predicts. "Our world will be full of those kinds of examples where we can communicate directly our intent and have very complex outcomes by working together," Melroy says.

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