Key Themes

Robotics and Artificial Intelligence

 

Artificial intelligence already impacts every industry, powering search, social media, smartphones and tracking personal health and finances. New GPUs are being developed to power deep neural networks and enable machines to learn at a speed, accuracy, and scale never seen before. At the same time, automation technologies in the factory and warehouse are helping workers from China to India and beyond deal with 3D tasks (dirty, dangerous, dull). What’s coming next promises to be the greatest technological breakthrough of our time.

 

Computing and Cybersecurity

 

The end of Moore's law is bringing about a new era for computing. Unum, quantum and neuromorphic computing are just a few of the emerging solutions to increase computing power after Moore's law no longer applies. Meanwhile, as more sectors of the economy go digital, cyberattacks rise too. With more than 50 billion connected devices predicted by 2020, further expertise is needed to curb vulnerabilities.

 

Agile Manufacturing and New Materials

 

Breakthroughs in nanoarchitecture are bending the rules of physics with materials whose structures can be precisely tailored so they are strong yet flexible and extremely light. Lighter structural materials can be more energy-efficient and versatile.

 

Virtual and Augmented Realities

 

After many false dawns, new devices are finally bringing virtual reality into the mainstream. At the same time, emerging technologies promise to challenge VR's primacy - think augmented, mixed, holographic or cinematic reality - by blending virtual reality and real life together. How will our day-to-day experiences be augmented by these emerging technologies?

 

Brave New (Bio-Engineered) World

 

Genetically engineered immune cells are saving the lives of cancer patients. Gene editing in plants promises to increase agricultural output and feed a growing population. DNA App stores will make it cheap and easy to learn more about our health risks and predispositions. What are their technological and ethical implications?

 

Urban Sustainability

 

Around the world, cities are focusing on new technologies to improve services and prepare for population growth. Singapore’s Smart Nation program harnesses technology to improve citizen services, connecting everything to everyone and making citizen life in Singapore easier. Intelligent transport, innovative fintech solutions and new smart living projects are just a few of the initiatives being trialled.

 

Space 4.0: A New Era for Space Exploration

 

Reusable rockets are changing the economics of space missions and travel, making launch systems incredibly cheaper. In this new space race companies are looking at ways to service satellites and spacecrafts as well as overcoming astronauts’ health issues arising from long missions in zero gravity – think 3D printing and genome sequencing. On top of that, space could also spell the answer to Internet access for the next 4 billion.