2. The Restaurant of the Future.
How many more centuries will elapse before the master-serf model implicit in most restaurants disappears? Restaurants, to me, invoke images of the ingratiating waiter hanging over ones meal, of suffering long waits before ordering, having the food delivered, or getting the check, and of the voluntary system of tipping the waiter. The fragile self-esteems of medieval nobles may have delighted in having slaves available for petty tasks, but why did this system survive long past any benefits it offers? Many possibilities now exist whereby the restaurant customer could dictate his order directly to the cooks. Similarly, technology (including open outcry) exists whereby the cooks could notify the customer that his food is ready. Why should one wait for an intermediary (waiter) to fetch his food? Why should the bill not be ready and paid the instant the food is prepared (or even ordered)? How many centuries will it take for this nonsense to end?
3. The Mechanical Butterfly.
This would be a mechanical (nanotechnology) device which might be able to fly across the world, use some sort of GPS system to get to a specific area, and then zero in on the genetic smells of a particular individual. It might then place poison on the skin of that person. Perhaps it might eavesdrop on conversations.
(you know, I suspect that even nuclear war would not destroy all humans, but coming biotech and nanotech developments might allow intentional extinction of every living cell on the planet).
Don't worry, though, consciousness would persist.
4. The Crystalline or Molecular Photograph.
Everything in the universe fits together. It would not surprise me if it turned out that physical materials, by being affected by everything that happens to them, might record such happenings in a way that might be retrievable and viewable by humans. Thus, perhaps movies or pictures of dinosaurs might be preserved around us, waiting for us to develop them.
5. Wait for a Human Telephone Technology. I'd like to see technology where, if forced to wait (put on hold) when I call some number, I'd be given an option that allowed me to set down the phone and leave the room. When someone could finally speak with me, a tone would go off on my receiver. This tone would double in volume every two or three seconds, so that I'd neither get my ear destroyed, nor have to be nearby.
6. The Virtual Wall. The technology is probably near, whereby a virtual wall or partition could be projected by a small device. The device might cause a thin plane of air molecules to become polarized in such a way as to block light. This would be useful for nude outdoor recreation, creating partitions in office spaces designed by ergonomic idiots (office spaces without good partitions between workers), and for creative and frequent repartitioning of homes.
7. The Practical Auto Body.
This possible invention would include the following changes in automobile body design:
8. Physical Money.
In the far distant future, perhaps after mankind undergoes some positive physical evolution that results in a larger brain, he'll reinvent CASH! This newly discovered physical money will be found, by these more advanced humans, to have the following benefits:
9. The Shoe Shaped Like The Human Foot.
The idiot who invented that shoes should have pointed toes hopefully experienced the principle of his own life being his punishment. It certainly indicates the power of momentum in human affairs that most shoes STILL are shaped suchly. Not only that, but in America, they still usually fit shoes to have the tiniest amount of extra space possible for the toes. Anyone who walked a normal amount (based on our evolution and common sense), say two hours a day or more, would eventually experience foot problems by following these cultural norms. The shoe is obviously the most important of all pieces of human clothing, and probably the only necessary one.
I often feel like a man from a positive future who was cast back into the age of human automatons.