Transforming the way we experience the world; this is what today’s technology seems to be doing to us. We find out how
The immense power and reach of modern technology can only be estimated by the recent example of a 31-year-old Saroo Brierley who found his mother through Google Earth after painstakingly trawling through the site for a long time. In 1986, five-year-old Saroo Brierley got separated from his elder brother at the Khandwa railway station. Saroo had fallen asleep on a train and thinking he’d find his brother on the train, he boarded a train to Calcutta. Saroo had a difficult time looking for shelter, twice he almost drowned in the Ganges, but he learned to fend for himself. He survived the slums and was taken in by an orphanage and was soon after adopted by a couple in Tasmania, Australia. He never knew the name of his town, but his determination to find his birth mother was kept alive through his memories. So he began using Google Earth to search for where he might have been born. He multiplied the time he was on the train, about 14 hours, with the speed of Indian trains and came up with a rough distance, about 1,200km. Using Google, he drew a circle on a satellite map with its centre in Calcutta and its radius about the distance he thought he had travelled. Amazingly this calculation led him back to the area where family had originally lived, which he discovered was a place Khandwa. Saroo was reunited with his mother but apart from the joyful reunion what is even more striking is the growth and impact of modern science and technology.
Saroo is not a one off example. In 2009 social networking website the Facebook lived up to what it was promised- the easiest and fastest way to connect with people who matter. Richard Marks, 33, of Weymouth, last saw his mother, Carol, when he was put up for adoption in Manchester 30 years ago. Now Marks, who has been trying to trace his family since he was 18, contacted them after finding his sister Andrea Roczniac by sending her a message through the networking site. Today he is happily reunited with his family.
The pace of change is stunning. The world is smaller and closer than ever before. The nature of technology itself has changed, it is no longer just a ‘device’. Constantly we are upgrading existing technology and discovering easier and faster ways of getting things done. So while we wait for the ‘next big thing’ here are few futuristic projects which, when they see the light of day, will be sure to blow your mind:
- Google X project: Apparently Google is trying to build bots to perform all sorts of mundane tasks around the home and office
- Elevators to space: Journeying to space will just be like going to your neighbouring country or state.
- Mechatronics: The integration of electronics, mechanics and intelligent-software control.
- Cloud programming: This could herald a new wave of applications for social media analysis.