seven disruptive technologies and Tech Flashes

Seven disruptive technologies to watch out for in 2017


Technological progress is speeding up, powered by artificial intelligence, expanding computing capabilities, the rise of the digital assistant and the return of bricks-and-mortar stores.

In 1965 Intel co-founder Gordon Moore articulated what has become widely known as “Moore’s Law”: that the number of transistors in a dense integrated circuit will double about every two years. Consider that this has held true for some 50 years now, and you don’t need to be a computer scientist to get the pace of the modern digital revolution.

And as technology keeps on colliding with reality, our lives and businesses will change forever.

Digital assistants will manage our schedules, autonomous cars will take us to our next meeting and a new generation of wearables will keep us fit, healthy and constantly connected.

Here are just some of the technologies to keep an eye on in the year ahead:

Reality, enhanced 
We’ve all heard of virtual reality and augmented reality, but mixed reality is set to be even bigger. This form of reality is set to be highly integrated, with technology overlaying our daily activities seamlessly to create a personalised, digitally enhanced experience to enable smarter, faster business. This integration will enable deeper integration and harvesting of data than ever before.

Personalised experience
Virtual reality and augmented reality will make their way into bricks-and-mortar stores, enabling personal shopping experiences like never before. Go to a shop, get your body scanned and have a complete, customised wardrobe created for you. The real world will take on a new meaning, with stores as brand embassies designed to create new experiences for customers outside the limits of their internet browsers.

The road to autonomy
In 2017, autonomous vehicles – cars that can drive themselves without human intervention – are predicted to progress in leaps and bounds. Look for software updates from Tesla, and new products from Mercedes and others, to introduce this technology over the next few months. Driving will be safer and more convenient, and new businesses, such as co-owned vehicle ride sharing, will emerge.

Measured health 
Watches and other fitness trackers will mean big business, especially with added features such as the ability to take blood pressure and measure glucose levels. Beyond smart watches, the next step change is in smart devices and wearables such as contact lenses, skin patches and glasses.

Smart money 
Distributed Ledger Technology (known as DLT or blockchain) will make some banking processes radically more efficient, and create a new type of competitor for core banking services. This secure, transparent technology built on open-source principles, and it’s set to transform almost every aspect of a business’s finances – from invoices that pay themselves to share certificates that automatically send dividends if profits reach a certain level.

Real-time assistance 
Technologies such as Google Assistant, Siri, Cortana and Amazon’s Alexa are like having a butler who can anticipate your needs and desires. From pre-emptively booking an Uber to take you to your next meeting to ordering more coffee pods when the machine is empty and organising a restaurant and inviting guests to a birthday party, the promise is endless.

Everything connected
Everyday devices that can communicate between each other and users will transform day-to-day life. Think consumer goods that automatically call a technician if they’re in need of service through to office buildings so green they manage their own energy use and waste disposal, sending power credits back to the grid and using smart solar to heat (and cool) the structure.




Think we should be mindful of the ethical use of technology and its human impact.  For example I don't use automated checkouts in supermarkets  for that reason, given one automated checkout has possibly overtaken the jobs of 4 or 5 checkout operators  who very shortly after would find themselves in a Centrelink queue.....

Realise some technology is great but some is  just 'techno money-grab bells and whistles' that offer nothing to the quality of our lives...

Was a bit p.ssed off to hear they may be getting rid of public phones completely because of the maintenance cost with the assumptiom that everyone carried a mobile phone these days.....yet I still kmow people don't ..

Ethical use of technology and its human impact should be a serious consideration and factored into the 'progress juggernaut', before too many are thrown on the unemployment scrapheap never to work again. .......given I'm at a complete loss as to know where new jobs are meant to be coming from...

What is unethical about technology advances like supermarket checkouts?  Unethical is peoples jobs being turned into part time jobs and all the loot from technological advances going to the top end of town.

Funny how average people never see the forst for the trees until it is too late.  Bring on the tax cuts for the rich..........Trickle Down Economics!

I NEVER use automated checkouts. Keep a human in a job! Wait till they have robot "checkout chicks". That will be next.

The more we rely on technology the more problems will occur when it falls in a heap. Anyone familiar with the latest computer viruses(or should that be viri).

They will only become more celever at getting into systems and cause problems. Wait for the self writing viruses. Just tell it where you want to hack into and away it goes.

Our local supermarket has given up using their automated checkouts because of all the stealing going on, so they are always 'closed' lately. Keeps the local kids in a job.

Is this your contribrion to the new world .

you must be very old 

Robotics?  Electric Cars?  Driverless cars.  Missed a few Brocky.  And yes Blockchains is already here. This is how Bitcoin operates and als the technology which is going to drive a whole multitude of digital currency.  It will only be a few short years and you can kiss cash goodbye.  The you government has you where it wants you.

I love reading the never ending diatribe of rubbish about the march of technology.

Almost everything people imagine will happen never does.

I was talking to someone just the other day about Bar Codes on our groceries etc at the Supermarket.

How many of you remember the the unholy row that caused?  The sky was going to fall in, it was the end of civilisation as we know it, all hell was going to be let loose.  And given some of the rubbish I read on this site, I have no doubt many people here were among the perpetrators of this garbage.'

Then there was ATM's, and god knows what else that has gone on to improve our lives, and we lived through it all.

However, I don't use automated checkouts anywhere.  Too much hassle for me.  I will wait till the rest of the world catches up with Amazon, and I can just walk out of the shop and have my card charged automatically.  At a guess, I would say Aldi will be the first to introduce that given that it will help them reduce prices even more and stay ahead of the pack.  Coles and Woolworths will have to be dragged kicking and screaming into the future.


I enjoyed your reply John . 

I find it exciting how technology has disrupted many areas of our lives for the better . 

I was recently travelling overseas and the use of free wi fi virtually everywhere in Europe ( including UK) combined with whatsapp . Means I could communicate by phone , FaceTime , voice memo , instant messaging , send photo and movies .for free . 

The use of Uber everywhere means I was not at the mercy of local taxi drivers had a quote before hand and no Money changed hands . In Paris at Garde d Nord I was quoted 75 euros by touts for taxis preying on tourists . 

Uber in a Mercedes and in two minutes was 17 euros quoted in advance . 

I was able to go to any ATM and simply draw cash anywhere . 

I received daily to my I pad the Australian WSJ and Times and my weekly Spectator and Economist wherever I travelled . 

Starting early summer with selected long haul Boeing 747s, we will fit our planes with the latest generation Wi-Fi. You will be able to use your smartphone, tablet or laptop to send and receive messages, listen to music online, stream videos, post pictures and a lot more.


Go BA ..... 

Home > Wearables > F.lashes is the crazy wearable tech nobody asked…


By Andy Boxall — Updated June 30, 2017 9:05 am 


43The crazy f.lashes wearable, which is taking crowdfunding website Kickstarter by storm, is the kind of product a hardcore party-goer would create, if they happened to live in the neon-drenched future depicted in Blade Runner. The name gives away what they are: A set of false eyelashes that have a series of LED lights built in, which flash and pulse in time with your movements. 


Yes, it’s the piece of wearable tech no-one asked for, but apparently everyone wants, because the campaign has smashed its $40.000 target with more than $93,000 pledged at the time of writing.



The f.lashes appear to attach in the same way a regular set of false eyelashes attach — not that I wear them particularly often to truly know, so please feel free to correct me — and a demonstration video shows them going on in a matter of seconds. Once on your eyes, they display one of five different patterns, all given ridiculous names like, “hyper burst,” “endless winks,” and the highly appropriate “knight riding,” which resembles the light on the front of K.I.T.T. in the Knight Rider TV show. If that’s not a selling point, we have no idea what is.





Virtual reality is much more than just a new form of entertainment, it is increasingly being used in a wide range of medical applications, from treatments to training. Here are a few of them.


1. Pain management

There is good scientific evidence that virtual reality (VR) can help relieve pain. The parts of the brain that are linked to pain – the somatosensory cortex and the insula – are less active when a patient is immersed in virtual reality. In some instances, it can even help people tolerate medical procedures that are usually very painful.

Other studies have shown that amputees can benefit from VR therapy. Amputees often feel severe pain in their missing limb, which can be hard to treat with conventional methods, and often doesn't respond well to strong painkillers like codeine and morphine. However, a technique called "virtual mirror therapy", which involves putting on a VR headset and controlling a virtual version of the absent limb seems to help some patients cope better with this "phantom pain".


2. Physical therapy

VR can be used to track body movements, allowing patients to use the movements of their therapy exercises as interactions in a VR game. For example, they may need to lift an arm above their head in order to catch a virtual ball.

It's more fun doing exercises in virtual reality than it is in a gym, so people are more motivated to exercise. It can help in other ways too. For example, we found that for patients who are anxious about walking, we can control their virtual environment so that it looks as though they are moving much slower than they actually are. When we do this, they naturally speed up their walking, but they don't realise they are doing it and so it isn't associated with pain or anxiety.

Studying how people perceive and interact with VR systems helps us design better rehabilitation applications.


3. Fears and phobias

If you have an irrational fear of something, you might think the last thing you need is to see it in virtual reality, however, this is one of most established forms of medical VR treatment. Phobias are often treated with something called graded-exposure therapy, where patients are slowly introduced to their fear by a therapist. Virtual reality is perfect for this as it can be adjusted precisely for the needs of each patient, and can be done in the doctor's office or even at home. This is being used to treat phobias such as fear of heights and fear of spiders, but also to help people recover from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).


4. Cognitive rehabilitation

Patients with brain injury from trauma or illness, such as stroke, often struggle with the everyday tasks that we take for granted, such as shopping or making plans for the weekend. Recreating these tasks within virtual environments and allowing patients to practise them at increasing levels of complexity can speed up recovery and help patients regain a higher level of cognitive function.

Doctors can also use these same virtual environments as an assessment tool, observing patients carrying out a variety of real-world complex tasks and identifying areas of memory loss, reduced attention or difficulty with decision-making.


5. Training doctors and nurses

Virtual reality is, of course, not just for patients. It also offers benefits to healthcare professionals. Training doctors and nurses to carry out routine procedures is time consuming, and training generally needs to be delivered by a busy – and expensive – professional. But virtual reality is increasingly being used to learn anatomy, practise operations and teach infection control.

Being immersed in a realistic simulation of a procedure and practising the steps and techniques is far better training than watching a video, or even standing in a crowded room watching an expert. With low-cost VR equipment, controllable, repeatable scenarios and instant feedback, we have a powerful new teaching tool that reaches well beyond the classroom.


 Explore further: Virtual reality eases phantom limb pain

Provided by: The Conversation 




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