Is high technology a dead end to solve the problems our society is facing? How can we use the technologies of the past to solve the problems of tomorrow? That’s what Kris de Decker from Low Tech Magazine and No Tech Magazine said. Let’s take a look below on top 5 technology of year 2018.

Most often, to design a sustainable society, old technologies are ignored. We do not care. We look down on the technologies of our ancestors. But this disdain is not always justified, because high technology does not have the monopoly of innovative technologies, recalls Eris de Decker. The optical telegraph was able to send text messages all over Europe at a speed of 1200 km / h, without electricity.

I do not come to tell you that you have to replace the internet with the optical telegraph but to show you that old technologies may contain solutions for the future.

Eris de Decker evokes a 700-year-old building technology that makes it possible to build vaults with tiles and save a lot of energy in construction. This technology has recently been reused in the construction of a museum in South Africa, to build a lightweight and highly insulating structure. We can, therefore, use old technologies with new materials or adapt old concepts to modern technologies.

The coming five technologies in 2018

The Internet of Things, voice control, augmented reality, ultra-fast 5G wireless and artificial intelligence can sound like emerging technologies, but that does not stop manufacturers of electronics, appliances, and even cars to fully borrow all this for their novelties of the coming year The proof, in five steps.

  1. Artificial intelligence

Many good jokes come to mind about these android robots that are peeling around a pole in a club of dancers near the Las Vegas Convention Center, where the CES takes place. For at least 15 years, the porn industry tries to take advantage of the techno conference to talk about it, and that shot, it did not fail. With the exception that the buzz is not exactly positive …

But as the saying goes, if the sex industry adopts new technology, it is a precursor to the popularity of the technology. So, get ready for an invasion of robots of all kinds.

Another humanoid that foreshadows a brighter future for the Al is Sophia, of Hanson Robotics, whose face toured the web last year It can keep the discussion going easily, to a point where it is worrying.

That said, these robots will not necessarily take the human form. During his presentation on stage at the opening of CES, Intel closed the show with a particularly animated lighting game, created from scratch by small helicopter drones with projectors. The trick: these “Shooting Star Mini Drones” have nobody at the controls, even if they can coordinate their efforts once programmed. The effect is striking, but no luck for those interested, these drones will be reserved for corporate presentations like this one It’s a little more niche, but at least its a little more concrete than all these promises of an autonomous  consciousness for robots whose main mandate could be to replace humans in jobs a little too boring.


  1. Augmented reality is the camera of the future

A lot of virtual reality and increased at CES again this year. If we were to point to only one product embodying a new trend, it is probably the Mirage Solo of Lenovo. This virtual reality headset is powered by Google’s Daydream system and features a new motion technology called World Sense that allows you to navigate the virtual world and the real world with six-dimensional motion sensors. axes.

mirage solo

This novelty makes virtual reality a bit more interactive, without having to rack your brains with the equipment you need to interact with the software interface. Naturally, for Daydream as for all other virtual and augmented reality environments, what is still sorely lacking is content that makes you want to go back more often than once or twice after buying the product …

At this level, perhaps the camera that Lenovo unveiled alongside its helmet could provide some of the solutions? The camera does not have a particularly eye-catching style, but its two lenses for stereoscopic snapshots have told more than one observer that this might be a prime example of cameras that will equip smart phones in the near future.

If it happens, it will help this technology that is slow to really take the momentum to go beyond the simple effect of novelty.

  1. All-round voice control

An American colleague wrote that at the rate things are going, the gadgets that will make the news by the end of CES will be those who have not yet integrated Alexa, Amazon, or the Google Assistant. Because if Amazon has taken a dominant position in this niche still nascent, Google has worked hard this year to be seen (or hear, to choose).

So Google has already announced partnerships to integrate voice assistance with devices from other major brands. JBL, Bang & Olufsen, LG Electronics and other loudspeaker and headphone manufacturers have opted for Google’s voice command. Lenovo, LG, and Sony will add the Google Assistant to their TVs, which could make the good old remote control obsolete, and make it easier to access content from the Google ecosystem.

Amazon introduces Amazon Alexa, Echo and the All-New Echo Dot at a product launch in London

For her part, AI continues to group the other devices in the house under his aegis. From Whirlpool to Moen, many home appliance and home appliance manufacturers have unveiled novelties as disparate as a microwave oven or digital shower head that will respond to voice assistant commands Amazon.

  1. 5G Networks: Its going to be fast … eventually

Last month, the telecommunications industry finally agreed on standards to implement the fifth generation of wireless networks (the 5G, the current LTE networks being 4G). In recent days, US wireless service providers have confirmed that the first 5G networks on the continent will arrive at the end of the year

Like 4G networks, it is expected that the first wave of 5G will be a little slower than the theoretical maximum, which exceeds the gigabit / second, which should eclipse high-speed residential access by far In Canada, Bell’s tests, in particular, still have an initial throughput that is six times faster than the LTE connection currently in the fastest market. Mobile video lives, virtual reality, cloud, everything will benefit. Provided the prices are reasonable …

In principle, 5G networks were thought for the next wave of connected objects, from robots to cars. One of the advantages of this technology, beyond high throughput, is the almost instantaneous response time of communications (latency). In theory, it would be possible for a central to take the wheel away from your connected car to get you out of trouble via a 5G connection. No surprise if both Intel and AMD are working hard to convince car manufacturers to join them.

Oualcomm, Ericsson and Nokia are also convinced that these networks will have more virtues on more complex computer systems than smartphones. The real-time management of infrastructures, traffic, factories (and even robots working in these factories) are promising avenues for 5G, even if they are not quite public.

  1. Towards the Canadian autonomous car?

The big guns of the car industry invaded the CES a few years ago and it has not changed this year.

Ford has come to talk about a connected car since the first step towards a safe car park made up of cars with and without drivers is good communication between all these rolling objects. In particular, the Detroit group announced an agreement with Oualcomm to create industry standards for these communications, whether they take place between two vehicles, between a vehicle and pedestrians, or between a vehicle and the surrounding infrastructure. start at the traffic lights in the city.

Hyundai returns to the charge of its side with a good hydrogen battery for 600 kilometers of autonomy by full. That will allow his Nexo, a small SUV that will be marketed drip in the United States, to compete with the Toyota Mirai, among others. Only downside: unless staying in Los Angeles, it takes much more than 600 km to travel between two hydrogen stations …

Toyota, for its part, has let Gill Pratt, its chief investigator, present his doubts about his rivals’ too tight schedule for autonomous driving. According to him, fully autonomous vehicles, known as “level 5, are sure to see the light of day. It remains to determine what day it will be, and if it is only Toyota, this day will occur much later than 2019, which promises General Motors, among others.

Interesting detail

In all this, it is probably the equipment manufacturers who are likely to benefit the most They provide the systems that bring these vehicles of tomorrow to life. Two equipment manufacturers that are well positioned to take advantage of this trend are Canadian. Magna International has developed solutions in terms of electric motorization and autonomous driving that should appeal to major manufacturers. For its part, Leddartech, from Quebec, presented a compact and inexpensive lidar sensor that should help these same manufacturers to take the next step in assisted driving, that of the public deployment of the first level 3 autonomous systems, good especially for the highway.