Future Now: The New Body Language
IFTF's latest research on The New Body Language
For a decade, we’ve been talking about a future where we’ll have computers on our wrists, in our eyeglasses, even implanted under our skin. Today, that future is here. From gold-plated Apple Watches to the much-mocked Google Glass to vibrating fitness tracking wristbands available for $30 a piece in a 3-pack at Costco, wearables have gone mainstream. We now have the technology to put computer power and Internet-connectivity pretty much anywhere in, on or around our bodies. And it’s clear that, in a decade, this technology will become exponentially more powerful and accessible. But what’s less clear, is why we would want these body area networks, how we’d arrange and configure them and what we’d use them for.
As part of our 2015 Technology Horizons research into Human+Machine Symbiosis, (the evolving relationship between humans and machines), we set out to answer this question. And the answer we found is the “New Body Language,” an exploration of how technology in, on and around our bodies will help us express ourselves, connect our communities, alter our anatomies, and help us fulfill our longstanding and deeply human intentions and aspirations.
We’re pleased to make the entirety of this research public in the inaugural issue of
Most pieces in this issue focus on the human side of Human+Machine Symbiosis—how body area networks will augment the intentions and expressions that play out in our everyday lives. Some pieces illuminate the subtle, even invisible technologies that broker our outrageous level of connection—the machines that feed off our passively generated data and varying motivations. Together, they create a portrait of how and why we’ll express ourselves with this new body language in the next decade.
Listen to the Podcast
In an IFTF podcast, Mark Frauenfelder sat down with Miriam Lueck Avery, who led the New Body Language research, to discuss how wearables, implantables, and wireless networks will connect our communities and alter our anatomies in the coming decades. Listen to the podcast or read its full transcript.