The desktop computer on which you are probably reading this story may soon become an unwieldy artifact of the past as computer developers are coming up with more and more ideas for changing the way in which we look at and use computers today.
Handheld computers are only the beginning. Look for computers to appear in the guise of mobile phones, watches, in the guts of cars and household appliances, and even as an add-on to your wardrobe. Not only will computers be everywhere, but they will be networked. You may never again be more than a voice message away from your washing machine!
Computers will take the guesswork out of diagnosing problems with appliances, they will enable users to place an order at a store before they arrive (with the aide of navigational software in the automobile) so the order will be ready and waiting when they walk in the door.
IBM and other companies are working on developing standards so that all the computer companies work in the same direction, making computers that are completely compatible with one another.
And people in business are one step closer to the paperless office, as small hand-held computers are predicted to take the place of bulky briefcases full of papers. Make your presentation by automatically downloading your material from your hand-held computer to the computers of the rest of the meeting participants. Or – will we even need to show up at meetings? Just send your computer…