2018 TECH TRENDS REPORT — from the Future Today Institute
Emerging technology trends that will influence business, government, education, media and society in the coming year.


The Future Today Institute’s 11th annual Tech Trends Report identifies 235 tantalizing advancements in emerging technologies—artificial intelligence, biotech, autonomous robots, green energy and space travel—that will begin to enter the mainstream and fundamentally disrupt business, geopolitics and everyday life around the world. Our annual report has garnered more than six million cumulative views, and this edition is our largest to date.

Helping organizations see change early and calculate the impact of new trends is why we publish our annual Emerging Tech Trends Report, which focuses on mid- to late-stage emerging technologies that are on a growth trajectory.

In this edition of the FTI Tech Trends Report, we’ve included several new features and sections:

  • a list and map of the world’s smartest cities
  • a calendar of events that will shape technology this year
  • detailed near-future scenarios for several of the technologies
  • a new framework to help organizations decide when to take action on trends
  • an interactive table of contents, which will allow you to more easily navigate the report from the bookmarks bar in your PDF reader



01 How does this trend impact our industry and all of its parts?
02 How might global events — politics, climate change, economic shifts – impact this trend, and as a result, our organization?
03 What are the second, third, fourth, and fifth-order implications of this trend as it evolves, both in our organization and our industry?
04 What are the consequences if our organization fails to take action on this trend?
05 Does this trend signal emerging disruption to our traditional business practices and cherished beliefs?
06 Does this trend indicate a future disruption to the established roles and responsibilities within our organization? If so, how do we reverse-engineer that disruption and deal with it in the present day?
07 How are the organizations in adjacent spaces addressing this trend? What can we learn from their failures and best practices?
08 How will the wants, needs and expectations of our consumers/ constituents change as a result of this trend?
09 Where does this trend create potential new partners or collaborators for us?
10 How does this trend inspire us to think about the future of our organization?




Psalm 139:17-18

Psalm 139:17-18 New International Version (NIV) — from biblegateway.com

17 How precious to me are your thoughts, God!
How vast is the sum of them!

18 Were I to count them,
they would outnumber the grains of sand—
when I awake, I am still with you.


Image from hdwallsource.com



Psalm 98:4-9

Psalm 98:4-9 New International Version (NIV)


Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth,
    burst into jubilant song with music;
make music to the Lord with the harp,
    with the harp and the sound of singing,
with trumpets and the blast of the ram’s horn—
    shout for joy before the Lord, the King.
Let the sea resound, and everything in it,
    the world, and all who live in it.




Let the rivers clap their hands,
    let the mountains sing together for joy;
let them sing before the Lord,
    for he comes to judge the earth.
He will judge the world in righteousness
    and the peoples with equity.






Philippians 4:8

Philippians 4:8 — from the New International Version (NIV)

8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true,
whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure,
whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything
is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.


Philippians 4:8-9 from The Message:

8-9 Summing it all up, friends, I’d say you’ll do best by filling
your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable,
authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst;
the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse.
Put into practice what you learned from me, what you heard
and saw and realized. Do that, and God, who makes everything
work together, will work you into his most excellent harmonies.




Psalm 8 New International Version (NIV) — from biblegateway.com 
For the director of music. A psalm of David.


1 Lord, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!
You have set your glory
in the heavens.

2 Through the praise of children and infants
you have established a stronghold against your enemies,
to silence the foe and the avenger.

3 When I consider your heavens,
the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars,
which you have set in place,

4 what is mankind that you are mindful of them,
human beings that you care for them?

5 You have made them a little lower than the angels
and crowned them with glory and honor.

6 You made them rulers over the works of your hands;
you put everything under their feet:

7 all flocks and herds,
and the animals of the wild,

8 the birds in the sky,
and the fish in the sea,
all that swim the paths of the seas.

9 Lord, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!




Matthew 7:12 New International Version (NIV) — from biblegateway.com

12 So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.


TV is (finally) an app: The goods, the bads and the uglies for learning — from thejournal.com by Cathie Norris, Elliot Soloway


Television. TV. There’s an app for that. Finally! TV — that is, live shows such as the news, specials, documentaries (and reality shows, if you must) — is now just like Candy Crunch and Facebook. TV apps (e.g., DirecTV Now) are available on all devices — smartphones, tablets, laptops, Chromebooks. Accessing streams upon streams of videos is, literally, now just a tap away.

Plain and simple: readily accessible video can be a really valuable resource for learners and learning.

Not everything that needs to be learned is on video. Instruction will need to balance the use of video with the use of printed materials. That balance, of course, needs to take in cost and accessibility.

Now for the 800 pound gorilla in the room: Of course, that TV app could be a huge distraction in the classroom. The TV app has just piled yet another classroom management challenge onto a teacher’s back.

That said, it is early days for TV as an app. For example, HD (High Definition) TV demands high bandwidth — and we can experience stuttering/skipping at times. But, when 5G comes around in 2020, just two years from now, POOF, that stuttering/skipping will disappear. “5G will be as much as 1,000 times faster than 4G.”  Yes, POOF!


From DSC:
Learning via apps is here to stay. “TV” as apps is here to stay. But what’s being described here is but one piece of the learning ecosystem that will be built over the next 5-15 years and will likely be revolutionary in its global impact on how people learn and grow. There will be opportunities for social-based learning, project-based learning, and more — with digital video being a component of the ecosystem, but is and will be insufficient to completely move someone through all of the levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy.

I will continue to track this developing learning ecosystem, but voice-driven personal assistants are already here. Algorithm-based recommendations are already here. Real-time language translation is already here.  The convergence of the telephone/computer/television continues to move forward.  AI-based bots will only get better in the future. Tapping into streams of up-to-date content will continue to move forward. Blockchain will likely bring us into the age of cloud-based learner profiles. And on and on it goes.

We’ll still need teachers, professors, and trainers. But this vision WILL occur. It IS where things are heading. It’s only a matter of time.


The Living [Class] Room -- by Daniel Christian -- July 2012 -- a second device used in conjunction with a Smart/Connected TV






Training today’s learners to be the hired guns of tomorrow — from gettingsmart.com by Michael Niehoff


Freelancer. Free Agent. Independent Contractor. Consultant. Hired Gun. Slice it anyway you like–this is the future of work.

This is the “Gig Economy.” The world where contract work is the new norm. Experts say this already represents 34% of the current American workforce and estimates are that this will increase to 40% – 50% by 2020.

As educators, how do we prepare today’s students for a future employment landscape that is vastly different from what we ourselves have known? Yes, it’s about skills – both technical and interpersonal. But it’s also really a new way of thinking about our operation in the working world.

Our students will need to continually learn about and apply current developments in technology, global collaboration, market opportunities and emerging industries to win in this new economy. How do we give students both the mindset and the skillset to not only survive, but thrive in this 21st-century gig galaxy?

Let’s go beyond the norm and regardless of grade level, program or specific academic content area, help all learners be prepared for the future of work in the new economy. Educators and schools may consider implementing the following six concepts.



Keep That Cheese Moving
We are all creatures of habit. Students, and adult learners too, love to sit in the same space, work with the same people and ultimately follow patterns of daily work. The problem is that our addiction to habit and predictability (schedules, processes, expectation, etc.) runs counter to the nature of work in the future, which will require people to be much more flexible, adaptive and less attached to a norm. Our students will be working in environments that will be constantly disrupted and re-created. Learning to have one’s cheese moved is more important than ever and directly related to developing a startup mindset.




Also see:

Minerva: The Intentional University — from gettingsmart.com by Tom Vander Ark


Problems to be Solved
Kosslyn and Nelson outline four problems that Minerva addresses:

  • Higher education is not fulfilling its promise: students are leaving unprepared for work and life;
  • Many college students are unengaged and half don’t graduate;
  • Global students don’t have access to first-rate colleges; and
  • College is too expensive.

The innovative Minerva design and the book detailing its startup phase address all of these problems. Stated positively, Kosslyn suggests that higher education should equip young people to succeed in life after college, both professionally and personally. That leads to four goals:

  1. Understanding leadership and working with others: most of the world’s problems are so complex they require people to work together, leveraging each other’s strengths.
  2. Understanding innovation: learn when and how to innovate.
  3. Thinking broadly and adaptively: acquiring broadly useful intellectual tools.
  4. Attaining a global perspective: experiencing different cultures and being comfortable working with people from different backgrounds.





Psalm 118:22-24 (NIV)

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
    his love endures forever.

22 The stone the builders rejected
    has become the cornerstone;
23 the Lord has done this,
    and it is marvelous in our eyes.
24 The Lord has done it this very day;
    let us rejoice today and be glad.


28 You are my God, and I will praise you;
    you are my God, and I will exalt you.

29 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
    his love endures forever.



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© 2017 | Daniel Christian