Scholar and futurist Joel Barker discussed some of the exciting technologies on the horizon. Barker said many of these inventions occur when two different ideas are combined to create a brand new idea. The Amazon Kindle and Sony Reader are examples of this innovation at the verge, he explained, noting that these eBook readers combine the readability of paper and the vast storage capacity of modern electronics.
Barker shared information about an environmentally friendly acoustic refrigerator which uses a loudspeaker and inert gas to keep food cold, an algae-to-oil technology that he claimed could meet America's current oil requirements, as well as a special kind of dirt, called terra preta, that keeps its fertility for centuries and sequesters carbon (read more at nationalgeographic.com).
Barker provided details on lithographic printers capable of printing three dimensional objects, nanopaper as strong as cast iron, "buckypaper" that is 70 times lighter and 500 times stronger than steel of the same thickness, and an inexpensive, long-lasting "ultra battery." Barker also spoke about the implications of the coming innovations and invited listeners to visit implicationswheel.com for more info.