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The Internet as we know it today is just a temporary stopgap between where we are and where we will be. As there is no reason to believe that technology will stop progressing, the big question most business people are asking themselves is, where best to invest their money.
I believe that the money lies with mass audience appeal, books, music, films, television and now the Internet. These are all things that the masses have come to embrace. They have also come to accept whichever medium delivers this information, be it records, CD’s, DVD’s, videotape, audiocassette, mp3 etc. All these information delivery systems will be obsolete within 10 years. The computer as we know it today will also be obsolete, the information the user wants will be delivered to them down a phone line or via a future version of the mobile phone, but the phone lines we have today will not be the same as we have tomorrow. You don’t have to understand the technology involved, all you have to know is that it is already here. These new phone lines, are in fact just high-speed network connections. All they do, is deliver more information faster than any phone line ever could, so by plugging whichever set top box or mobile device you have into them, (see diagram onpage 41), then you will be able to connect to any other computer, TV network, website or whatever else is out there.
What was being proposed, was to be one of the other things out there.
REMEMBER THIS IS A LAYMEN'S INTRODUCTION - SKIP THIS PAGE IF YOU ALREADY GET IT.
In simple terms, imagine we both had fax machines and you send me a fax, with your details on. I now know who you are and what type of fax machine you have. So I now configure my fax machine to talk to yours. Now imagine that my fax machine is not actually a fax machine but a computer that contains lots of information and in your fax to me, you have requested some of that information. Because I would now know what type of system you are using, I could then configure my computer to deliver the information you want and in the format, that best suits your system.
Now let’s say your system is a PS3:-
and you wanted to see an image contained within the network. What you would do is connect your PS3 to your new advanced phone line and then you would dial a phone number which would then connect you to the network. Your PS3 could then tell the proposed network, that you had a PS3 and also tell the network who you are and possibly your credit card details or payment method.
You are now connected to the network, so just say you wanted to see a picture of let's say the ‘Sydney Opera House’ and the system had that picture contained within its image database, as you enter the system you are given a list of options, these options would allow you access to all the things on the system, including a picture of the ‘Sydney Opera House’. Now if the system contained 3D images, then it could also send you a tailor-made 3D VR style image for your particular set top box, Playstation 3, PDA, X-Box 360, WII, PC etc.
As end user technology improves, then these high quality 3D images could be of anything, including famous people and places from history, you could also give these famous people a life of their own. So think of a famous person from history you would like to meet. Thought of him or her… good, now then, the system could recreate that person digitally and make them look and talk the same way they would have. This is no longer a sci-fi fantasy, this is now a real technical reality.
Now then this is just the start, by collecting a series of three dimensional computer generated models of many objects, environments and sounds etc, then the computer could be given a relative awareness. Your senses tell your brain how the world looks and works, through virtual reality a computer can in theory and increasingly in practice, do a similar thing. Computers can be trained to recognise sounds, objects and environments, the ability to intelligently comprehend that data is a software engineering challenge, not a hardware specific problem. Self aware Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) is the current holy grail of computer science, this proposal was originally meant so as to show how to produce a virtual computer system capable of meeting that challenge. The ability to intelligently understand the world we live in and the people who live on it, is I believe a task that computers can be trained to do and do better than most humans. This is the basis for section 3 of this proposal.
Oh and by the way, the lay person maybe interested to know, that the Internet and the Web are two different things. Think of the internet as the underlying infrastructure, and the Web as an application running on top of it. Click here, for more on this.
Also for a
laymen's guide to bandwidth and optical networks etc, click
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