Inventions We Would Like to See

I’d like to make the disclaimer that the inventions mentioned here are purely fictional.

The New Apple Transformix: The Last Device You’ll Ever Need

This Summer, Apple releases it’s new device called the Transformix. It’s an adaptable and transformable device that can become any object of roughly the same mass. It will come in 3 sizes (tablet size, big screen tv size and car size). In its raw form it only has a voice interface.

Tablet Sized Transformix

Tablet Sized Transformix

At their latest demonstration, Apple showed the tablet sized Transformix change from a cell phone, to a tablet, to a rock, to a glass, to a furry Pokemon doll. In other demonstrations, the car sized Transformix was able to mimic the exterior of several different cars including a Ford Mustang, Mercedes E Class, a Corvette and a pickup truck. Before you get too excited, the engine is sold separately. The Transformix is due to hit select stores in late July.


Car Cameras to Catch People Texting and Driving

Texting while driving, or distracted drivers cause 100s of accidents every year. Despite an expensive and far reaching ad campaign meant to stop people from texting and driving, it still remains an issue. In response to this, car manufacturers will be installing a multitude of outward facing cameras in all vehicles starting next year.


The system is set up so that when you press a button on your steering wheel, the surrounding 30 seconds (15 seconds before you pressed the button and 15 seconds after you pressed the button) of video from all cameras is saved.  When you get home you can choose to review and upload the video to authorities.


New Facebook App Measures the Diversity of Your Network

How ethnically diverse is your circle of friends?  And how does it compare to the diversity of other peoples groups? If you are a Facebook user, you will soon have the answer. Facebook plans to roll out a new feature that will identify different ethnic groups in your photos and among your list of friends.

Exactly how the algorithm works is a secret. What we do know is that it works pretty well. In test after test the app was able to calculate a diversity score of profiles and guess which friends were mere acquaintances and which friends were close confidants. It could also accurately guess the ethnicity of the people in the photos about 95% of the time.


The Big Business of Dating Gets Even Bigger

The latest players to get into the match making arena make for strange bedfellows. Comcast, Google, Microsoft and Apple have joined forces to create the ultimate predictor of romantic success. At first glance it would seem that these huge corporations would be the last to know anything about romance, let alone give advice. But as it turns out, these 4 companies know more about most people than the people know about themselves. Online habits, mood fluctuations, food preferences, political beliefs, communication styles and habits, vocabulary, movie preferences…you get the picture…they know a lot. In recent beta testing over the course of 2 years, the algorithm did some pretty amazing things. Follow up interviews verified many of its predictions.


Seemingly unlikely matches were sometimes made. There were even several subjects who were matched with someone of the same gender even though they had never been in a homosexual relationship. When asked about the results they reported having had those longings but never acting on them.  “It’s not as easy as pairing people who like the same things, together.” Says Ike Sterling, head of the new dating initiative. “Differing tastes and preferences sometimes interact in a complimentary way that you could not predict unless you see the data.”

43 thoughts on “Inventions We Would Like to See

  1. afatosum

    Its amazing how technology is changing our lives for the better. Indeed using your phone while you are driving is a dangerous habit esp. to other road users. The invention of this kind of camera will help nub these culprits so they can face the consequences of their actions.

    1. oportosanto

      No question about that and sadly enough I still see quite a few people talking on the phone while driving without the free hands kit. Either cases the questions I raise are related with privacy concerns as I don’t think they can do this mandatory.

  2. arunava2016

    All of these are simply amazing or may be something even more awesome! The Car Camera for catching people using the cell phone while driving is the most significant of them because this bad habit has become an epidemic and has killed probably more people than the recent wars. I would also be eager to see how the Apple Tranformix does as it seems to be one for the future.

  3. Sparkster

    Great concepts and ideas. I have a question about the Apple Transformix. It doesn’t happen to be made of that shape-shifting metal that was invented in China recently, does it? You know, that biomimetic mollusc. That’s what it immediately reminded me of anyway. I think the using of cameras on vehicles to catch people texting or using their phones (or anything else illegal) whilst driving is a pretty good concept which is definitely feasible given the nature of surveillance these days. In fact, my father bought a new car recently and I was shocked to find out all the modern functions it has, from tracking the car everywhere it goes 24 hours a day through GPS to having a feature that allows it to be driven via smartphone.

  4. abonnen

    This would be a good idea, however I do not think that all technology will change our life for the better. Sometime I feel like the world is to plugged it, while I enjoy that we are becoming very technology advance sometimes I find myself asking “do we really need this?” Sometime I feel that technology inventions are getting a little out of hand. This is just my personal opinion though.

    1. rz3300

      Well I agree to a certain extent. There are definitely examples of things going too far and situations where I ask myself if we really need these things, but on the whole I would have to say technology is a good thing. Just this last week, hearing about how Facebook is trying to get the internet to places that have never had it via satellite….that is pretty cool, and I can think of a lot of benefits coming from that. It is certainly interesting regardless of where you stand though, and thanks for sharing.

  5. nevisummers

    I would like to see our technology in 100 years. This is surely a leap in our technological level, technology helps us improve our lives and without it we can’t keep going, we see technology everyday cellphones, laptops, computers and on other things, probably all things we see today have some circuit or board to enhance its functionality, it’s amazing era we live in.

  6. oportosanto

    That Facebook app has to be something interesting! Facebook is always innovating and that is why they are huge and growing…

    Now, as for those car cameras I am seeing that as hard to happen as that would violate our right to privacy, but we never know.

  7. abonnen

    I thought about this more last night and I was think that the camera is the car would be good with all the blame been put on the police lately. I think it could help clear up some of those issues, so not just catch people texting but it could help in the field of law enforcement as well.

  8. SirJoe

    The transfomix idea really something revolutionary. These new digital device never stop to amaze me. Just to think that about 50 years ago the closest you could come to seeing a device like this was looking at Star Trek. It’s hard to imagine what it will be like 50 years from now.

  9. anorexorcist

    This was one of the most interesting reads that I have had in a couple of days, even if it was all fictional, those things seem to be really good inventions and I actually can se some of them in the future, just like Transformix maybe? It would be awesome to have that versatility on a device, and if a company can make it happen, it would definitely be Apple.
    I also really liked the idea of the texting/talking on the phone camera, it seems like a good alternative when it comes to prevent accidents, but I guess that it can get the company into some privacy issues with people, I guess.

  10. oportosanto

    Well, that’s the beauty of it, we never know what is just fictional today and what will be true tomorrow, so at the level technology is these days we might as well dream and who knows if some of these things might be true.

    Talking on the phone camera is already quite possible these days though. 😉

  11. kaleido

    My knee-jerk reaction to the Transformix was ‘no way is this feasible’, but then I remembered that people have said that about many of the discoveries, inventions and innovations that we do have now. The car cameras are a great idea. I’m not sold about the third one though; I feel like having this will just exacerbate discrimination because it’ll make people too aware of their race. I mean, it’s great to be proud of your ethnicity and all, but shouldn’t we be emphasizing our similarities instead of our differences? It doesn’t really matter what your race is, as long as you count each other friends.

    1. Lamb0

      I had the same reaction to the Transformix as you! I agree with you. It may seem unrealistic at the moment but we can’t rule out the possibility of it becoming true someday. People of the past would never have imagined that the inventions and technologies we have today could ever be possible. Someday, in the future, things that we are thinking right now to be unfeasible could possibly become reality. Like what people always say, history repeats itself.

  12. rz3300

    I had the same response as @kaleido did, where I started to get really excited when I remembered that people looked at the things we have today, and if they saw them back then, they said no way would that be possible. Think about wireless internet or bluetooth. It does seem far out, but at the same time it would be no fun not to think about it being possible one day. Thanks for sharing, and all bow to the Transformix.

  13. Kavon

    The Transformix is a great concept. If you think about it, one of the reasons of the over-mining and over-consumption that exists today is because of the huge amount of products that are being produced and consumed. Our methods of production are outdated. What needs to be developed are objects that can transform into different objects. This will greatly reduce the amount of things that need to be produced. Of course, this would not be good for business, because people would need to buy fewer things. But that just really shows that our current business model is in conflict with what’s good for the environment and for the planet.

    1. WanderingSoul

      I’m personally wondering if there would be something like, I don’t know, licensing issues or something of the type when using a Transformix to copy the design and functionality of someone else’s creation? Would someone have to be responsible for acquiring the rights to copy something, even if the Transformix really is capable of copying anything?

      1. Kavon

        That’s an interesting point. Laws about intellectual property rights would also apply to such a device. There could be restrictions put on the device, by law, so that the device can’t transform into something that’s patented. But, it can perhaps transform into some “generic” version of it.

        I think that designs, for what the device becomes, would be sold and distributed in a way similar to “apps”. Some designs would probably be created under the creative commons license, and would be used and distributed freely.

        Similar to apps, there could be limited versions of the designs, that require a purchase to be made, to unlock the full version.

      2. Kavon

        Many people who have commented on this post seem to be very fond of the car camera. From what I understand, this is a camera that is supposed to be installed on all cars, by law. Do people realize what that implies? That means that the government will be spying on you, by placing a camera on your property. This isn’t really an issue about technology and innovation (The technology for doing this kind of thing has been around for quite some time). This is a political issue.

        So, what’s next? Will the government have people place cameras inside their homes so that it can spy on them?

        1. Lamb0

          When I read about the car camera, I was one of the people who immediately thought that the idea was amazing. I have never thought about the invention being used to compromise people’s privacy until you pointed it out. It made me re-evaluate the significance of this idea. You made a good point.

        2. LizLemonLyman92

          Kavon – surely it depends on how the device is created and regulated. If it’s created as described in the article, then the driver will be the one who decides what’s recorded. There’ll still be privacy issues of course, but no more than on facebook or youtube. There are legitimate reasons to fear government overreach – the NSA’s PRISM programme looking at phone metadata being one of them. Personally, I think it’s rare that new technology is in and of itself a bad thing – we have more to fear from innovative ways that exisiting technology could be misused.

        3. kate

          It depends on the culture. In Russia many motorists install cameras in their cars for protection, it is how we got all those wonderful meteor videos. If the camera is fully under the user’s control, short range and low resolution, and has wireless access only as a fully removeable option, then there’s less of an issue. In the UK it may well fall foul of privacy laws about not photographing people where they have an expectation of privacy.

          The other thing is that many people have now stuck wireless cameras in their homes already, in the form of video game consoles. In the UK at least that changed the nature of gaming somewhat: unlike the US where people put consoles in the lounge, most teenagers here have their consoles in the bedroom, making a voice controlled camera a major problem (especially for teens with a girlfriend and mischevious younger sibling)

      3. Wheezybz

        If I remember correctly that’s similar to what happened with 3D-printing. People were uploading models for copyrighted products (toys and the like) and there were copyright notices all around.
        There’s also the concern of using the device to create a weapon (exactly like the 3D-printed gun) and cause harm.

  14. cafwen

    The online dating concept is intriguing indeed – and yes I suppose these companies can probably see trends in our behavior that we’re probably not aware of ourselves. After all we’re very good at knowing how we feel in a given moment, but ask me how I was feeling six months ago, or how my moods and preferences change over a period of years, and a computer would likely do a much better job! They are so expert at selling us products which we didn’t even realize we needed, that it only makes sense they could extend this to selling us people and personalities too. While it might seem a little cold, if anyone can scan across the world’s internet-using populations and find our perfect match, Google and Apple could do it, especially with people we would probably never actually meet in real life. Handing our love lives over to the machine? Controversial perhaps, but on paper it does seem to make sense!

  15. emuzeskylow

    As amazing as all these innovation sounds i fear for the future of human existence itself. We are gradually approaching the era of computer/machine invasion. I am a fan of technology and new innovations but I fear the consequences of absolute technology. The Apple Transformix reminds me of Transformer movie. It is really amazing to have an object change into different ones. However, I must applaud the concept of exterior car cameras exposing those who default traffic rules. Having read this post it dawn on me how rapidly technology is developing.

  16. melanie

    Whoa the transformix sounds AWESOME! Super impressive! Really, and to think there’s something like that in OUR lifetime. Next thing on my list… that thing that delivers food to people on Star Trek next generation!

  17. SFOMH88

    The first two ideas are the most useful in my opinion. The third idea seems a bit useless, to be frank. I really wouldn’t care what ethnicity my friends are and wouldn’t see a point in keeping track. The fourth idea seems like a huge datamining operation, lol.

  18. FFExplorer

    I love the idea of the car camera. There are so many idiots operating cars and causing accidents because they can’t either wait or pull over before answering a text. A device like that would save so many lives!

    The Apple device seems cool, but I can’t imagine what type of technology would allow a device like that to even exist, to be honest.

    The dating service thing seems a little Orwellian. Relationships can’t really be predicted by algorithms, at least, I don’t believe they can.

    Looking forward to seeing more cool ideas! You have a new subscriber!

  19. Aree Wongwanlee

    Thank you for sharing your flights of fancy.

    Seriously speaking, there are two inventions in particular which I believe will become reality. One is how the social networks like Facebook could work together with search engines like Google to create a dating app which is really global and accurate in its matchmaking. I think they will eventually reach that point in their development sooner or later since they are in the business to make money and the dating game is big money.

    The other one which I think may actually be already in operation is the one where Facebook uses its user data to create a diversity profile. It’s not too difficult to do. Facebook already has all the data in hand. It’s just a simple matter of setting up the program and running the data through it.

  20. LizLemonLyman92

    The car camera thing sort of exists in Russia – apparently because insurance fraud was so common at one point, it’s common for drivers to have dashboard cameras in their cars, which is why so much camera footage has made it’s way online from Russian drivers.

    I suppose that’s how innovation tends to work – people try new things informally and messily with existing technology, if it serves a positive purpose, then, over time, manufacturers will integrate it as a standard part of the product.

  21. kate

    While these are interesting, the type of invention I am more interested in is currently happening in the field of health. Duke University’s work on using cancer to cure glioblastoma is not the only virus-vs.-cancer treatment in development, but it is the only one to show such promising results it was fast-tracked. A cancer cure, particularly if it could ever be made affordable, would change the world, but the idea of something that can lock onto a cell’s identifiers to target and affect only the affected cell has far greater appilications. Cancer. Bacteria. Viruses. Even Aging…? That really could change the world.

    1. Lamb0

      Wow, a virus-vs-cancer treatment? This is the first time I’m hearing about it. I’m ashamed for not knowing much about such things. I admit I’m not really that fond of reading about the advancements happening in the medical world but that’s because it seems far too complicated for me. It’s pretty amazing how the things we deemed unlikely to happen before seem to be slowly becoming a possibility.

      1. kate

        I mistyped slightly: Duke University are successfully using Polio to cure glioblastoma. The normal survival time for that cancer is 11 months, but patients in the test (at stage 4 and deemed incurable) have survived 24-36 months and some have been found to be clear of cancer. It is at early stages, but deemed a breakthrough and fastracked for investigation and roll out.

        There’s more details here:

        1. bigman

          I saw this on 60 seconds, Kate. Yes I think they are on the cusp of figuring out the right dosage for each person. Different reaction from different persons during the initial trial stages but definitely the cancer reacted to polio when injected which is definitely very positive. Hopefully this leads to many other discoveries in the field of cancer treatment.

  22. Raine Hood

    The Transformix is such an innovative idea. It has this strong futuristic vibe to it. I would really love to see this fictional invention come to life. Who wouldn’t? And the car cameras could be really helpful in preventing accidents made due to carelessness and haste. Honestly, all the ideas are great. And there has been such a great development in the science field and we, as humans are really thriving, with things like google glasses and hover boards and whatnot becoming a reality. Hopefully, these fictional inventions will soon become a reality too. 🙂

  23. brdwlk

    A dating app from the group of companies that has the deepest roots into your life actually seems like a logical next step for them. In this world of Big Data, companies are always looking for new ways to monetize the information they already collect.

  24. dmk1985

    I remember seeing French illustrations from 1900, of fantastic contraptions that the people of time imagined might exist in the year 2000, and some of them actually weren’t that far off! Flying machines as well as dedicated machines to help with difficult work. It’s very cool to imagine the type of technological advancements we might see in the next 100 years. Maybe, like these French illustrators, some of us might imagine something that seems outlandish now, but could be reality in 100 years.

  25. deanyd_17

    Living in a small town in the middle of Saskatchewan I can see the Network Diversity Measure being a bit of a joke for me. Just about everyone I know and keep in touch with is white. A number of guys from work are ethnically diverse, and I am pretty close to a few of them, but there’s no Reservation in the area . Where I grew up, that was a different story. Caucasian people were actually a minority in that small town. Still, my measure would be… lacking.

  26. 17emilyhalko

    While Facebook is innovative, I’m not sure that the diversity tracker is going to successful. I suppose that the purpose of the diversity tracker is to inspire people to create a more ethnically diverse friend group, and that’s a beautiful concept, but I’m not sure if it would legitimately work. I personally don’t have ethnically diverse friends, and it isn’t by choice and I’m not racist, but it’s because I grew up and live in an area that isn’t diverse and is predominantly Caucasian. I also don’t think that it is very progressive for an app to have to inspire or challenge others to find more diverse friends; in order to uproot any racism or biases that there still are, you have to change the hearts of people, and that is not something that an app can change.

  27. alina64929

    It’s amazing how much technology is evolving and impacting our lives. To think that just a few decades ago it was uncommon to even own a cellphone, as compared to the vast technology we have access to today, is extraordinary.
    I have always been told by parents and grandparents that growing up, they felt everything that could have possibly been thought up of had already been invented. With black and white televisions and bulky landline phones, its amazing how far technology has come since then. I, for one, am excited to see what the future holds.
    I think these new inventions are all great ideas, particularly the car camera idea. Texting while driving is a major cause of road accidents and I think that technology such as this can influence others in not engaging in this dangerous act.
    Though I feel the other inventions are less influential and necessary in our lives, they are great commodities and a great step into the future.

  28. jennywren

    I wonder just how fictional your article, “The Big Business of Dating Gets Even Bigger” really is. I say that because last night I was watching “The Mysteries of Laura” S1, Ep17 “The Mystery of the Intoxicated Intern” which is about just what you described, a hi-tech dating algorithm. I have seen this in other shows of the same genres and have found that normally these subjects often operate on either complete truth or at least several grains of truth otherwise the suspension of disbelief would be too much.

  29. sorrowscall

    I honestly feel like I’d want the apple Transformix but I’d know it was too good to be true. The molecular and physiological structure wouldn’t allow for it to become all it claims to. The screen would have to minimize and enhance itself as well as compact itself. That’s not to mention the need to fit the various computer or television related nonsense into it. The other suggestions in this post do seem far more feasible compared to this, unfortunately I’m more interested in the Transformix than I am society or it’s media.

  30. TheMoonHuntress

    I don’t mind the first two inventions mentioned, but this one “The Big Business of Dating Gets Even Bigger” is too cold and calculating. I fear might abuse this technology and rather than save relationships, more will be broken instead. Anyhow, it’s too premature to make conclusions. My biggest concern is simply the fact that emotions are not that easy to quantify or predict.

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