Technology: What’s Happening in 2017?

The emergence of disruptive technologies shows no signs of slowing in 2017. Rather, innovators are continuing a long tradition of building on previous breakthroughs, finding new applications and combining them with other technologies to create new products and experiences. Frog Design asked 15 innovators for their 2017 tech trend predictions. Ranging from food production and farming in the sea to smart buildings and business bots, the list, with examples and justifications, makes for a fascinating read. Specific to urban innovation, notable predictions include:

Heroic AVs: Autonomous vehicles will start saving lives, sometimes in impressive fashion. AVs will demonstrate “dramatic emergency evasive manuevers” that save lives and sometimes grab headlines.

Our Space will Participate: The Internet of Things will continue to develop, to the point where it participates in your life. Low-cost sensors will support machine learning enabling products to anticipate human responses in the home, office and even hospital. Beyond lights coming on and coffee brewing, this could even lead to the rapid reconfiguration of spaces.

Drones for good: Low-cost drones will enable a range of people and groups – not just governments and major organizations – to undertake activities and experiments with positive outcomes. From humanitarian activities to thoughtful surprises, people will explore the potentials of do-gooding with drones.

Scalable Automatic Data Processing: Major advances in big data management have enabled a range of users to employ automatic data processing. This year, its use for things like predicting traffic patterns and determining the health of forests will expand.

Buildings that Work Smarter: Material innovations like carbon dioxide capturing cement and super thin solar capturing technology, will enable tremendous advancements in resource efficient building potential. Zero energy buildings are only the start.

Undoubtedly, a range of innovations will emerge over the next 365 days. What are your predictions?


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