Five in Five 五年里的五项课题

每年IBM挑选五项将在五年之内会在世界上有重大突破的新科技,称为“五年里的五”。他们是根据自己的研究课题并结合社会和市场的趋向,来挑选这五个项目新科技的。

今年所选的五项新科技是被描写为延伸人类的五个感官。设想在网上选衣服的时候,只有触摸电脑或者智能电话,你就可以感觉衣服布料的质地。IBM的副总裁伯尼·玛雅森预测,这样的技术可以在五年之内实现。

“你是在叙述从新发明一个操作电脑的方法,与电脑互动就像与人互动一样。”

触摸仅仅是电脑延伸感官的一个方面。IBM 说,智能设备很快就能听周围的声音,然后向我们报告它听到的信息。比如,伯尼·玛雅森说先进的语音探测系统将会告诉父母他们的孩子为什么哭。

“从孩子发出的声音,根据那声音特定的频率,我们就可以断定这个孩子是生病了呢,还是感到孤单。这样的分析对父母来说是非常有用的。这样的事情现在还没有办法做到,但是通过一台十分复杂的设备是可以做到的。”

智能设备还能帮助断定病理状态。如果你对着电脑或者手机打喷嚏,这设备就研读了成千上万你呼吸的微粒,然后告诉你是否应该去看医生。

“它会给你一个提示说,‘朋友,您可能并不感到生病,但是您的身体正在发炎,请立即去看医生。’”

在不久的将来,装置在电脑内的摄像头可以查明并且说出颜色的名称、识别图像。玛雅森先生说,IBM的科学家们正在制造一个电脑系统可以识别和复合食物微粒,从而制造常见的味道和香味。

“它将能够向你推荐合你口味的食品,同时还根据你所定的脂肪或者胆固醇限量来计算你将食取的热量。它就为你找的了既合你的口味又最有营养值的最佳点。”

乔治城大学的计算机系教授马可·马卢富说,他希望IBM的预测将会引导更多的学生创造未来的新发明。

“看到年轻人在扩展平台移动能力、增加网络领域和加大计算能力所做的,真是很激动人心的”

马卢富教授说,计算技术的提升将会把现在看来只是科幻事情成为我们今后日常生物的必需品。


讨论问题:

1.   你对这篇文章有什么看法?你对那些地方感兴趣?

2.   你觉得文章中所提到的科技有什么优缺点?

3.   总的来说,你觉得科技的发展对人类社会是有好处的呢还是没有好处?为什么有你这样的观念?










Every year, IBM Corporation chooses five new technologies it believes will change the world within the next five years. The IBM list is calledFive in Five.” The company says it considers its own research and the new directions of society and business when identifying the technologies.
 
This year, the list describes some future devices that will extend our five senses. Imagine looking for clothes online and touching your computer or smartphone to feel the cloth.
IBM Vice President Bernie Meyerson predicts that technology could be available in the next five years.
 
You’re talking about almost reinventing the way computers operate and how you interact with them as humans.”
 
Touch is just one of the senses that computers will help to extend.
IBM says smart machines will soon be able to listen to the environment and give us information about the sounds they hear. For example, Bernie Meyerson says an advanced speech recognition system will tell new parents why their baby is crying.
 
“From the sound the baby is creating, that particular frequency in the voice of the child, you know the difference between a child for instance who is sick as opposed to a child who is just lonely. That kind of understanding would be great for parents. This kind of thing is not possible today, but with a sophisticated enough system, it actually is possible.”
                                                                               
Smart machines will also help identify medical conditions. If you sneeze on your computer or cell phone, the machine will study thousands of molecules in your breath. Then it can tell you whether you need to see a doctor.
 
“It can give you an alarm and say; ‘Hey, you may not feel sick yet, but you have an infection, which you must go see your doctor immediately.’”
 
In the near future, built-in cameras in our personal computers will be able to examine and name colors and recognize images. Mr. Meyerson says
IBM scientists are also developing a computer system that can examine and combine food molecules to create the most popular flavors and smells.
 
“It’ll start to be able to recommend to you foods you’ll love the taste of, but it can also keep track of the caloric limits, whether you have limits on fat or cholesterol that you can eat. So it strikes this almost ideal balance between the best possible taste and the best possible nutritional outcome.”
 
Mark Maloof is a computer science professor at Georgetown University. He says he hopes the progress that IBM is predicting will lead more students to create future inventions.
 
“It’s going to be very exciting to see what young people do with the increased availability of mobile platforms and networking and computing power.”
 
Professor Maloof says advances in computer technology will make what now seems like science fiction a part of our everyday lives.


Discussion questions:

1.  What is interesting to you about this article?

2.  What are the pros or cons you see with the technologies mentioned in this article?

3.  In general, do you see technological advances as good or not good for society? Why?

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