A Decade in Tech: Advancements from 2008-2018

The world of technology is advancing at an ever-increasing rate, but living through it makes it feel like change happens gradually. It’s not until you step back and look at what has been developed over the past few years that you really see how far we’ve come. In this article, we look at the biggest changes that have happened in technology over the past decade.

Internet

OK the internet has been around since the 60s, and really took off in the 90s, but the last 10 years has seen some huge changes that have really fueled a lot of other technological advancements. A lot of the big services (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube) have been around for slightly longer than a decade, but the last 10 years have seen them grown and spawn numerous phenomena such as YouTube celebrities

Online streaming services have signaled the death knell of conventional TV and streaming, combined with cloud storage have almost completely done away with physical storage mediums such as DVD and Blu-Ray.

The average internet connection speed in the USA has experienced almost a 10x increase in the past 10 years making a lot of these new advancements possible, not to mention the privacy and legal concerns that came with it.

Mobile Devices

It’s hard to believe that only 10 years ago, most people didn’t own a smartphone. These days our mobile devices do everything for us, these pocket-sized computers have made many other technologies obsolete.

Android version 1.0 was released on September 23, 2008. only lagging behind iPhone IOS by little more than a year.

4G wireless communication technology was commercially deployed in Scandinavia in 2009. Before that, it was difficult to have a fast internet connection on your mobile devices.

Other mobile devices that have exploded over the past 10 years are smart watches and tablet computers.

3D printing

3D printing has been around for more than 10 years, but only in the past few years have we really been able to reliably print metals and other stable building materials. 3D printing is now a key component to many commercial manufacturing processes. Even houses and human organs are being 3d printed!

AI/Automation

We now live in an age where cars can completely drive themselves. This technology exists, although the laws and regulations are still struggling to catch up; 10 years ago this was a dream.

Drone technology has also advanced to make them a ubiquitous part of everyday life. Filming, photography, traffic reporting, farm and infrastructure monitoring all use drones, where 10 years ago the technology was still in development.

Robots are threatening to take over many jobs and have even progressed to the level of beating a human player at GO, a feat that was long thought to only be achievable in the distant future.

Finance

Contactless payments only really started to come into mainstream society since March 2008 and have increasingly pushed us to a truly cashless society. We can now conduct transactions without a physical card, everything can be conducted on our mobile phone.

The other huge advancement in money has been crypto-currencies. Bitcoin released its first open-source software in 2009 and things have taken off since then.

Other mentions

The advancements in technology over the past 10 years are too immense to capture in a small article. Some other technologies that have really only come into being in the last decade include commercially available, immersive, virtual reality, gene editing technology, reusable rockets, and electric cars. Looking back over the past decade it is amazing to see how far we have come and to think about how far we have to go.

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