The year 2014 is one for the books.
In 2014, 42.4% of the Earth’s population used the internet. Almost 3 billion humans used it, out of which two-thirds were from developed countries.
If a year should be cited as a good one for innovation and development, 2014 is the one. It is a difficult task to point out the most significant advancements. However, some do stand out more than the rest.
Interestingly, this particular year and the innovations and developments it yielded, start-ups developed most of them. So, 2014 was when the tech giants got a run for their money and had a bit more competition than in previous years.
So, without further ado, let’s list the most remarkable innovations this year provided to humans.
Advancements of the Technology in 2014
What did technology look like in 2014? What was brand new for humans? Which old devices were improved? What concept finally came to life? Let’s dive in and see.
The Copenhagen Wheel
One of the never-before-seen innovations of 2014 was the Copenhagen Wheel, created by a start-up called Superpedestrian, based in Cambridge, Massachusetts. To describe the wheel in simpler terms, it is an addition that can be placed on the wheel of a bicycle with a rechargeable motor powered by a battery.
The Copenhagen Wheel gives the rider a boost when needed, for example, when going up a hill or when the rider is tired, and all of this is done via the rider’s smartphone. The rider downloads the specified app to set their desired preferences for how the wheel should work.
Moreover, the Copenhagen Wheel can keep track of air temperature, road conditions, and any holes in the road that the rider should avoid. This information can be shared among other riders who use the Copenhagen Wheel.
Something similar to the Copenhagen Wheel introduced in 2014 was the FlyKly Smart Wheel, which functions similarly to the Copenhagen Wheel.
2014 – The Year of Hovering
Any invention that reduces physical activity like walking is always welcome to humankind. Combine that with a futuristic concept like something seen only in movies, and you got yourself a winner. Well, such a concept was debuted in 2014 in the form of a Hoverboard.
Hendo is the company that will go down in human history as the company that came up with a device that is electrically powered and allows humans to move without actually moving. When using the Hendo Hoverboard, you stand on connected pedals that hover about an inch above the ground. So, humans were able to walk without touching the ground for the first time in 2014!
Of course, like with any concept, the Hendo Hoverboard had its limitations when it came out in 2014. It could only hover when placed above materials made of copper or aluminum, and its battery lasted only 15 minutes. However, it was a significant step for humans as far as concepts are concerned.
India Goes to Mars
As said, 2014 was a revolutionary year for technology across different fields. One of those fields was space exploration. India became the first Asian country to send a spacecraft in orbit of Mars.
Also, India is the first country that has done this on their first try, something that not even the US or Russia could do.
In September of 2014, India sent their spacecraft called Mangalyaan successfully to orbit Mars. Although it is humble compared to the other spacecraft already there, it was still a revolutionary step that is the basis for establishing India as a significant competitor in the space race.
Smartwatches and similar gadgets had been around before 2014. However, in 2014 the market of wearable gadgets expanded tremendously. Devices like Google Glass and the Fitbit wristband generated a lot of attention in 2014.
Technological advancements in 2014 made it possible to expand beyond wearable gadgets to even more advanced electronics that adapt to the part of the body you wish to wear them.
These electronics have numerous sensors and are usually small and not easily spotted at first glance. Examples include earbuds that monitor heart rate and sensors made to be worn beneath clothes that keep track of a human’s posture. There are also haptic shoe soles that give GPS directions via vibrations sensed in the feet and are meant to help blind people navigate their way.
These various electronics have benefits across many fields and have enabled humans to be ever more connected to technology, and 2014 was the year when it all started happening.
Honorable Mentions For 2014
Other events that were also important for humans in 2014 include:
- BMW unveiled its i3, an electric car that exceeded the limitations other existing electric vehicles had. It offered a drive that was more energy-efficient and more kilometers available in a single charge.
- Because of customers’ already-present privacy concerns about cellphone providers sharing their data, the Blackphone was introduced. It ran on a customized Android system that did not have any features that endangered user’s data.
- Screenless display emerged as a high-potential field that can be obtained by projecting pictures directly onto a user’s retina, enabling the user not to carry any device and protecting their privacy.
- Brain-computing interfaces, which enable computers to read and interpret signals directly from the brain, become a possibility.
- It is concluded that lithium-ion batteries, which by 2014 were included in mobile phones, laptops, and electric cars, are inferior to silicone-anode ones. Silicone-anode batteries offer greater power capacity and are expected to be used in phones, laptops, cars, etc., in two years.
- A San Francisco company called MotionSavvy decided to use the progress made in motion technology thus far and apply it helpfully for those suffering from hearing impairments. MotionSavvy created a tablet and named it Uni, the first-ever sign language translator that can translate in real-time. With a combination of motion sensor cameras and voice recognition, they created a tablet that can translate American Sign Language into spoken words and words into text simultaneously as the speaker is speaking.
It is evident by the advancements listed above that 2014 was an exceptional year for humans and technology. Many first steps were made, many innovations developed, and quite a few life-changing technologies were beginning to be applied.
So, it can be said that a lot of progress was made in that year alone that put humans on the right track toward future developments and enhancements that could change their everyday lives.