Tech, Humor, Now + Beyond

17 technological advancements we thought we’d have by 2019

Dude, where’s my jetpack?

The future is here and it isn’t even technologically close to what we imagined it to be.

Sure, we have smartphones, smartwatches, rockets, and drones, but where is the fully-automated future we were promised as children? Where is the tech Back to the Future, Men in Black, The Jetsons, and so many other fictitious, sci-fi media, alluringly painted for us? The flying cars, the ray guns, and the jet boots?

The wonderful tales of tech spun for us in the past have left us wanting, and wanting bad. Here are 17 pieces of tech we deserve… but perhaps don’t necessarily need right now in case things turn out like Black Mirror.

1. Wireless everything

[Image description: In an animated clip, an over-plugged wall socket begins to spark.] Via Tenor

Yes, there are plenty of wireless devices on the market, but they sport a pretty hefty price tag. I’d also like to not carry a million chargers when I’m out running about, or be confined to a wall socket. Which brings me to…

2. Long-lasting batteries

[Image description: In an animated clip, a fully-charged phone walks into view but its battery begins to deplete as it moves. It then dies on screen.] Via Tenor

When was the last time you went longer than 10 hours without having to charge your mobile? Somewhere out there is a 1991 Nokia GSM mobile with barely a bar down on its charge. I need a marriage between that battery and my iPhone, stat.

3. Multi-function devices 

[Image description: A white cartoon man in a gray-white trenchcoat and bowler hat falls off the side of a building. His hat then springs open propellers, and he flies away.] Via GIPHY

I’m talking a laptop with a built-in printer and scanner. A shower which also dries. Let’s go all The Jetsons – sit in a chair and have the house dress us.

4. Invisibility

[Image description: A trenchcoat, bowler hat, sunglasses, and white gloves ensemble seemingly floats in the air, outlining the shape of an invisible man who shrugs in an IDK gesture.] Via Tenor

Forget the Invisibility Cloak, I’m referring to H.G. Wells’ 19th-century The Invisible Man. The main character, Griffin the scientist, changed his body’s refractive index to that of air so that it neither absorbed nor reflected light – thus, invisible! I’d hate to think of the nasty repercussions but a simpleton like me simply wants to render herself invisible when her Mom comes looking for someone to wash the dishes.

5. Smart clothes

[Image description: A white woman in a blonde ponytail exasperatedly asks “Where are all my good clothes?” She is standing in a bedroom, in front of a full closet.] Via Tenor

If we can low-key computerize our watches, then why not clothes? There are already e-textiles in the making which feature low tech attached to clothing. What we’re waiting for our clothes which alter temperature according to the outside environment, clothes which monitor the inner workings of your body – there’s so much.

6. Jetpacks, jet boots, jet anything

[Image description: An animated clip shows a faceless, white character with blond hair step into view and then take flight with his jetpack.] Via GIPHY

Who among us doesn’t want to throw on some clear visors, strap on a helmet and then fly off to work? Let the streets belong to the pedestrians once more! I want to see headlines ranting about the rising prices of jetpack fuel instead of car fuel.

7. Hypertravel

[Image description: An animation clip shows the first-person point of view of traveling faster than light. The lights show up in streaks of white and red.] Via GIPHY

14-hour flights? Can we do 14 minutes instead?

8. Lightsaber

[Image description: A brown-haired, white man is seated and purses his lips while raising his open, right hand in front of his face. A lightsaber then pops into the air, which he grabs, smiling.] Via GIPHY

Zero need, 100 percent want.

9. Scouters from Dragon Ball Z

[Image description: A cartoon clip shows a close-up of a fair-skinned male character, wearing a red lens piece in front of his left eye. Yellow symbols flash on the lens.] Via Tenor

The world is a scary place sometimes so having the ability to check out a person’s stats can come in pretty handy.

10. Wrist computer

[Image description: A dark-haired boy wearing an eye mask is speaking while searching for something on a holographic screen/keyboard atop his left wrist.] Via Tumblr

An elevated version of a smartwatch, a strapped-in, holographic version of a computer. My right shoulder thanks anything which takes away the weight of carrying around my laptop.

11. Exoskeletons

[Image description: A dark-haired man pulls a sword off his back. He is wearing robotic armor. Lights are flashing behind him.] Via GIFER

Let’s pretend that these won’t immediately be used in warfare and think of how great it will be in terms of emergency services, healthcare, and medical advancements. Preferably a suit which doesn’t need to be drilled in though. I’d rather hang it up on a coat rack at the end of the day.

12. Neuralyzers

[Image description: A dark-haired black man in a black suit and sunglasses holds up a flashing device and says “Hey, don’t even worry about it.”] Via GIPHY

Would I like to forget the time I peed in an elevator? Yes! Would I also use it on the person who, unfortunately, was with me in the elevator at that time? Yes! And perhaps also on every person who just read this bit of personal information about me…

13. Instant learning

[Image description: A dark-haired white man is lying back in a chair. He gasps, staring ahead wide-eyed as pages of information flash before him on a holographic screen.] Via Gfycat

Learning anything in a matter of seconds trumps learning over many arduous years.

14. Rehydratable food packets

[Image description: A dark, curly-haired young girl in a red blazer picks up and places a small packet into a microwave-look-alike Rehydrator machine. She presses a button and a burger appears.] Via GIPHY

I enjoy a slow roast as much as the next person but there’s no denying the allure of instant food. Imagine how much we can accomplish (read: watch more Netflix) by not losing time to cooking?

15. Underwater Atlantis

[Image description: A sea ship travels underwater, passing through a futuristic underwater colony.] Via Tenor

Jules Verne also made big waves in the realm of science fiction in the 19th-century. Explain to me how we’re beginning to travel through space but don’t have a futuristic underwater Atlantis yet?

16. Futurama’s What-if Machine

[Image description: A blond, white man sits on a red massage chair. In his hand is a paper. He gestures in confusion and says “I’ll never know enough to make an informed decision.”] Via GIPHY

Knowing what could potentially happen would really reduce stress levels globally.

17. Travel in time and space

[Image description: A young, dark-haired white man stands among futuristic tech. He is dressed in a red bowtie and a tweed jacket. Looking above him, he says “All of time and space, everything that ever happened or ever will, where do you want to start?”] Via GIPHY

Without breaking the world and/or causing World War III, please. I’d be fine with letting the Doctors of the world handle the itinerary and just enjoy the ride.

So, what are the chances of any of these tech pieces ever coming into existence? I’d say pretty high because the human race is innovative AF and a few of these are already in their beginning stages. The sad part is that they just may be outside of our lifetime’s reach, but a girl can dream.