12 April 2006

The future of the internet [Red Herring]

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The future of the internet
The Net is used in ways never imagined 10 years ago. In the next 10 years, it will burrow more deeply than ever into our lives.

The year is 2016. You’ve just come out of surgery and are being pushed down the hospital corridor on a gurney toward the recovery room. The nurses know you are on the way because a radio frequency identification (RFID) tag on your plastic patient identification bracelet automatically generated an alert to the nursing station.

The doctor doing rounds checks the Internet to monitor your vital signs. As always, the implants in your body are beaming real-time information about your brain waves and blood pressure to a protected web site 24/7. Your daughter, who is on a different continent, is already whispering words of encouragement into your ear—thanks to an embedded speech processor equipped with 802.11 wireless technology, TCP/IP communications protocol, and specialized software that allows sound from the Internet to flow directly into your cochlea. Using your VOIP-enabled mobile telephone, you tell her not to worry.

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