Boston 2050: What the future will bring

Your apartment of the future may look a little something like this.

In the next few decades, you could be eating dinner made with produce from the farm growing in your high-rise apartment building while a robot takes your plate to the dishwasher.

Those are just some of the ways cities like Boston might look differently in 2050, according to Dr. Ulrich Eberl, author of “Life in 2050″ and director of innovation communications at Siemens.

Bostonians, known for our “Masshole” driving abilities, will have their blood pressures lowered. Traffic lights and signs could disappear as new vehicles will be able to communicate with other cars and the surrounding infrastructure to avoid accidents, according to Eberl.

But as the population continues to expand rapidly — with an additional 2 billion people in the world by 2050 — driving around and finding parking might not make car ownership worth it.

“Individual car ownership is increasingly inconvenient for a lot of people,” said Patrick Tucker, an editor at the World Future Society.

Tucker said more people would likely create and join vehicle cooperatives to share cars.
Public transportation could also get an unusual upgrade.

Medical devices implanted in subway car seats or handles will be able to read a person’s vital signs and could alert medical professionals to an ill person before they realize they need help, Tucker said.

Schools look ahead

Students looking to get a Boston education could without ever visiting the Hub.

Schools like Northeastern and Boston University are looking to expand globally and offer courses in regional campuses in other cities and countries. Professors will be flown to those cities to teach every few weeks.

“There are new and … exciting visions for education at Boston University in the year 2050,” BU President Robert Brown wrote of the school’s global strategy. “We could, by then, be a multicampus institution.”

Building the future

By 2050, Eberl envisions:
   
Floating green islands for farming and trees on rooftops
Solar power cells on roofs, windows and walls of buildings
Wind turbines high up between skyscrapers
Washing machines that can read labels to determine what kind of clothes are in the machine


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Memorial held for Sean Collier, MIT police officer…

More than 1,600 people gathered at MIT on Friday for a memorial service for Sean Collier, the police officer shot to death a year ago in the aftermath of the…

National

Florida man charged with murdering son to play…

A Florida man annoyed that his 16-month-old crying son was preventing him from playing video games suffocated the toddler, police said on Friday.

International

Powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake rattles Mexico

A powerful earthquake struck Mexico Friday, shaking buildings and sending people running into the street, although there were no reports of major damage.

News

OMG! Exercise can make skin (and butt) look…

A moderate exercise regime can turn back time and actually reverse the skin's aging process, according to new research. The study showed that a minimum…

Entertainment

Whoopi Goldberg makes her debut as marijuana columnist

"It helps my head stop hurting, and with glaucoma your eyes ache, and she takes the ache out. It's wonderful," she said.

The Word

Kate Middleton made fun of Prince William's bald…

Kate Middleton and Prince William are in Sydney, Australia, right now, and it sounds like that brash Aussie sense of humor might be rubbing off.

The Word

Is Tom Cruise dating Laura Prepon?

"Mission: Impossible" star Cruise is said to be dating Laura Prepon, star of "Orange is the New Black."

Television

'Scandal' recap: Season 3, Episode 18, 'The Price…

Sally is Jesus, Olivia caused global warming, and Mellie's still drunk. Let's recap the Scandal finale. A church full of Washington insiders is about to…

NHL

NHL video highlights & analysis: Red Wings dump…

NHL video highlights & analysis: Red Wings dump Bruins in Game 1

MLB

MLB video highlights: Orioles top Red Sox, 8-4…

John Lackey roughed up for second straight outing

MLB

MLB video highlights: Red Sox score two in…

Lester shines in Red Sox win over White Sox

Sports

2014 Boston Marathon preview: Elite American, International runners…

2014 Boston Marathon: Elite American, International runners to watch

Tech

VIDEO: 'Vein-scanning' may become the future of paying

Designed to make transactions quicker and easier, the technology works by scanning the unique vein patterns in each person's palm.

Tech

#FollowFriday: 10 of the smartest Twitter accounts

Spending lots of time on Twitter? You might as well learn something. Here are some of the smartest accounts to follow.

Style

Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.

Wellbeing

Why is dance cardio taking off in NYC?

Instructors at some of the city's hottest classes explain why.