10 things we can expect in 2040

IN the future, we'll talk to buildings, wear clothing that gives us superhuman skills and access computer files with the blink of an eye.

At least that's according to a far-sighted report published today by accounting software company MYOB as part of its Future of Business series.

The report, introduced by the company's chief technical adviser and futurist, Simon Raik-Allen, looks at how the trends we are seeing now might help shape business innovation of the future.

It examines the evolutionary dead ends of the technology sector, from Dvorak keyboards to Google glasses and highlights some of the key factors - including social acceptance, marketing power and even colour - that determines the winners and losers.

"When I look back at the two decades of global innovation, there has been some stunning successes and some resounding failures," Raik-Allen said.

"For many of them, that success or failure has hinged less on how well they were built or the idea on which they were created, and more on how they were received by people: did they solve a problem, have a place in society, and capture the imagination in a way their competitors didn't?"

Here are a few examples of what we can expect in by 2040, according to the report.

Five ways technology will be more personal in 25 years

1. Super-powered Siri

People will have access to a "super-powered Siri".

The digital assistant, embedded under the ear, will be available 24/7 and able to help with everything from restaurant suggestions to booking client meetings and gauging traffic flow.

2. Technologically-tailored clothing

Clothing will have the ability to give people superhuman skills.

From exoskeleton suits that make lifting heavy packages or building new offices a breeze, to leggings that make it easier to walk, or even run, to Spiderman-like clothing with gels to improve strength or make ascending mountain peaks much less treacherous.

3. Chatting to a... building?

Control the home you live in, or the office you work in - from wherever you are.

Artificial Intelligence will be ingrained into buildings, meaning people can "talk" to the building - be it in person or through the use of super-powered Siri - and ask for adjustments in temperature and lighting or even cleaning.

Like a built-in home or office-based servant within the walls.

4. 20/20 Vision

Poor vision?

While Lasik surgery will still be popular (and come with a lifetime guarantee) some people will choose to opt for supercharged contact lenses.

With the ability to be worn consistently for up to a year at a time, the lenses will have the added benefit of overlaid VR.

Need to access spreadsheets or presentations in a video conference?
It can be done at the blink of eye.

Think Google Glass but cool (and no one will know you're wearing them).

5. Customisable prosthetics:

Prosthetics won't just just restore movement; they will give people new skills.

Right now a biological scientist is making use of a prosthetic arm with a built in drone and flashlight and a French artist has a prosthetic that doubles as a tattoo gun.

By 2040 prosthetics will be more customised and accessible than we could ever have imagined, with the ability to aid us in our personal and work lives.

Five jobs that will prove the usefulness of humans

1. Travel curator

Be it virtual or in real life, a travel curator (formerly known as a travel agent) will be an integral part of travel planning.

Able to holographically bring your destination to you and relate their own personal experiences, these curators will be easily accessible and available 24/7.

2. Lawyers and accountants

Not everyone will have picked up a law or accounting degree by 2040 so access to these professionals will remain crucial.

The only difference will be their availability and access, instant communication will be commonplace and there will be no "paperwork" with all digitised documents stored in your own personal cloud.

3. Craft brewers

Hipsters rejoice; craft brewing will not be a thing of the past.

More high tech than ever before, with the ability to grow your own grain and hops at rapid rates, craft brewing will be an experience everyone can enjoy.

It won't be all modern though, delivered on a GoPro Karma drone (circa 2016), the brewing experience will still have that vintage feel.

4. Unreal estate agent

Want to purchase property in the south of France but don't have the spare time to get there?

Never fear, a real estate agent will be there in a jiffy.

Not only will you be able to tap into their knowledge of the market, they will also be able to virtually "walk" you around potential abodes so you can "see" yourself living there.

5. Artists

Artists of varying shapes and forms from water-colourists to poets, authors and actors, musicians and designers, will be as prevalent as they are today.

Creativity isn't going to disappear anytime soon and only so much can be done through the addition of apps.

People will still want to tap into skills that they themselves don't possess (organically, anyway).

- NZ Herald

Topics:  business future jobs

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