These are published chapters from my book The real Internet of Things, published on January 1st, 2017.
The combination of daemonization and digital assistants will have another application (beyond providing monitoring for safety) that will prove extremely compelling: They will give people extraordinary powers of perception, knowledge, and even action.
As you move through the world on a regular day, your abilities as a human will be greatly enhanced by your digital assistant.
If you are across the street from a building, and there is a visual of the inside of it available, your DA will allow you to look through it. Perhaps like X-Ray vision. Perhaps like thermal vision. Perhaps like you’re inside and moving around. But you’ll be able to see within as if gifted with extraordinary powers.
When you are looking at a game of Go or Chess, the ideal move—powered by the world’s top supercomputers—will be overlaid upon the board as you look at it. Perhaps it will show a green outline of the piece you should move, or give you a lighted arrow showing the path of the piece. It might even give multiple options labeled by what famous players did before in your situation. The AR options are nearly limitless; the key is that you’ll be constantly provided with real-time intelligence and curated guidance.
Sitting in a crowded restaurant in Washington D.C., you’ll be able to glance at a particular group across the room and indicate that you want to hear what they’re saying. All other conversations will fade into a background lull, and you’ll hear that group clearly.
When listening to a sales pitch about something that sounds too good to be true, you’ll see a meter in the upper left field of view, or an outline around the face of the person you’re talking to. It’s a visual indicator that will tell you if he is being deceptive or not.
How will your DA know this? Your DA will stream their voice to a business’s daemon (or many) that does nothing but rate voices for truth (and other elements). It can tell you if someone is flirting, if they’re aroused, if they’re angry, or if they’re lying. And it gives percentages based on multiple factors (including fact-checking what’s being said in realtime).
You’ll walk out of a crowded restaurant and ask if anyone was talking about anything interesting in the room, and your DA will give you a three-sentence summary of every conversation you’d probably find interesting.
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But it won’t just be sound that’s enhanced. It will be possible to leverage available cameras to see things with varying levels of magnification and clarity.
If you’re in Central Park, for example, and you see a rare bird in the distance. You’ll make a gesture and it’ll suddenly appear closer and with increasing detail. You’ll see it as if you had a powerful telescope perfectly aimed at it. You’ll be able to look down at areas from above using the latest available camera, drone, or satellite images.
Your DA will be harvesting all available interfaces to make these views available to you, at all times.
These are not arbitrary features that may or may not be invented. They are guaranteed to happen—and likely early in the cycle of daemonization—because they fulfill a fundamental human desire to become more evolutionarily capable.
Being more aware and more knowledgeable than your competitors is a survival advantage, and these types of capabilities will drive a massive and vibrant marketplace.
One of the most fundamental human desires is to become more knowledgeable and more powerful, as these things are tied to survival.
Our DAs will use all resources available to them to provide us with the most and the best possible ways of interfacing with anything we are dealing with.
This type of functionality will very quickly spawn vibrant marketplaces because they appeal so directly to human instinct.