3 things direct from the future

12th Edition

Once per week I will deliver “3 things direct from the future”. A 2 minute read that will always give you:

  • one thing that can help,
  • one thing to be wary of, and
  • one thing to amaze.

If this sounds interesting to you then please subscribe.

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1. One to help

Amphibious houses

Want a waterfront property but too scared it will flood? Now your concrete slab can float up and down with the water levels.

An amphibious house, designed by architects BACA, is designed to float up to 2.5 meters adapting to any flood conditions. It is built upon a concrete-floating foundation in a “dock” of its own. This separated foundation allows the house to rise and fall as required within structural “guide posts”. In dry conditions, the house sits on the ground.

Even the garden in this house is smart, monitoring the water level and serving as an effective early warning device for flood activity.

According to BACA’s website, the amphibious house was tested between November 2019 and February 2020 when the UK was hit by severe floods and the site was inundated. During these tests the house would rise and fall without any problem.

Whilst an obvious benefit is for those who want to buy luxurious waterfront properties, another advantage is the ability to build low-cost housing in areas that were previously unsuitable.

2. One to be wary of

Election chaos

Breaking news today – The FBI conducted a rushed press conference to advise that Iran and Russia have obtained US voter registration data and are using it to target and threaten Democrat voters.

It has been confirmed that Iran is behind the sending of threatening emails to voters that pretend to be from far-right activist group the “Proud Boys”. According to The Washington Post the emails told recipients the Proud Boys are “in possession of all your information” and “You will vote for Trump on Election Day or we will come after you”.

This is yet another lesson in why we need to

  1. Be very protective, and selective, of our data and who we give it to.
  2. Check the source of any information we receive.

The argument I hear a lot goes “They know everything about me anyway”, or “I don’t care if they know where I am all the time”. But this reasoning does not hold any weight. It isn’t the organisations we know have our data that we need to be concerned about, it’s the ones that get hold of it illegally that we need to be wary of.

3. One to amaze

Augmented army puppies

Augmented army puppies

Sit. Fetch. Stay. Most dogs would know these commands. But if you’re a US Army dog you are so much smarter. Even more so now, with your canine-ready augmented reality (AR) goggles.

Army dogs scout for explosives and assess locations for potential hazards. Currently soldiers use hand signals or laser pointers to give instructions to their dogs. However this method is not ideal, requiring the handler to be near the dog as well as possibly exposing their location to the enemy.

A technology company called Command Sight have developed AR goggles suited for dogs. These goggles will provide the dogs with visual indicators and cues to direct them as required. They also give the handler a view of what the dog sees.

Army dogs are already used to wearing goggles. They wear them in bad weather conditions or when performing aerial drops. Seriously the dogs jump from helicopters! Each set of goggles will be specially fitted for every dog to ensure complete comfort.

Whilst the goggles are designed for use in critical situations, whose to say we can’t re-purpose them so our best-friends can hang out and have fun in their own dog-heaven VR chat (woof) rooms.

Have a great week.

Daniel J McKinnon

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