Meet the Jetsons: New Ideas for Innovations

The New York Times posted a list of innovations that are currently in concept mode. The introduction of the article describes the original failure of the electric light bulb and points out that most innovations and successes are the result of much trial and error.

I have heard it said before that most successful people do not see a failure as an end, but rather as an opportunity to try another path. I like that mindset and try to think that way whenever possible.

Photo Courtesy of

The list of innovations in the article sounds so futuristic – I guess it is, by its very nature, futuristic. The list includes things like electric clothes that enable your body heat to power gadgets and video games on subway straps that people hold when they ride the subway.A sampling of the ideas – there are 32 in total – includes:

Turning an entire room into a computer monitor and doing away with computer screens

Clothing that will track your activity level and report the information to a computer to encourage exercise

An in-car system that would alert paramedics to possible injuries in a car accident

A mind-reading shopping cart (I like this one, although if it really read my mind , who knows what would end up in my cart – but I may not mind if it would actually shop for me!)

A tooth sensor that would identify plaque and alert your dentist (I like this one a little less)

Edible food packaging

These ideas seem far-fetched, but when I think back to my college days in the early 90’s, e-mail and iPhones would have seemed pretty far-fetched if you had described them to me; in fact, the internet would have sounded the most far-fetched of all!

Sometimes I wonder what changes will occur over the next decade and how I will adapt. Things change at such a rapid pace and at times I find it difficult to keep up. I have to admit that I don’t even understand what Pinterest is! (Feel free to educate me in the comments section, as I know many bloggers are very skilled in this area.)

I also wonder whether a failure to keep up with technological innovation has become the dividing line between who is considered employable and who is considered an unskilled worker. What will this mean for kids who do not have access to much technology? Students leaving college now grew up with this type of rapidly moving innovation and have learned to adapt to the changes. What will that mean for those of us who are running to catch up?

What do you think? Do you picture yourself using any of the technologies listed in these articles? What changes have occured in your lifetime that you never thought were possible? Do any of these ideas make you uncomfortable? How do you try to stay up on the latest innovations? Do you have an idea that is not listed here or any suggestions for budding inventors who may have an idea they would like to create? Have you ever had an idea that failed spectacularly but then led to something that succeeded? Do you think that an understanding of how to use a wide range of technologies will become as important as a college degree? Or do you think that this will just be one of many characteristics that employers will be looking for?

I hope you will add your thoughts. And thank you for reading!


Filed under Career Planning, Education, Fitness, Health, Parenting, Social Media, Youth Leadership

28 responses to “Meet the Jetsons: New Ideas for Innovations

  1. Wasn’t the edible food packaging an idea that surfaced in “Night Shift”??

  2. The Michael Keaton character (very funny guy) had the idea for “edible paper.” Same thing. No?

    • I think maybe I didn’t see that one. And I love Michael Keaton! It’s funny, because both you and my economist blogger buddy point out that these ideas are already out there in movies and science fiction. Probably, that is where we need to look to see what is coming next! Thanks for reading and for the comment!

  3. Someone once asked Thomas Edison if it was discouraging that he had tried so many options for a light bulb filament. His response: “I haven’t failed, I’ve found 10,000 ways that don’t work”.

    And that turning an entire room into a monitor thing – reminds me of Fahrenheit 451. Still really cool, though.

    • I love that! Maybe that is the quote I was thinking of./ I’m not sure – that’s why I follow the Sticky Quotes blog! 🙂 Should be interesting to see what comes next. Thanks for reading and for your comment!

  4. I’ve never checked out pinterest either – I’m getting too old for all that crap! What has changed in my life-time? Speaking of old….microwaves came – they were big and as loud as an airplane; VCRs and videos – in the beginning you also rented the VCR because to buy one was like $700! The first mobile phones, as big as a rolling pin. records gave way to CDs, I could go on and on……

  5. On the movie, Jennifer: Henry Winkler and Shelly Long are also in it. It’s a hoot! You can probably rent it on DVD these days. “Night Shift.” Best thing Shelly Long ever did, in my view.

  6. FYI – Pinterest is a virtual pin board, it’s focus being on visuals gleaned from the internet, but very often, from other pinners. I have one – and can give you an invite. You can “follow” pinners that you like, or simply follow one of their boards, so to speak. I have quite a few “boards” and one of them is titled “So that’s how you do it!” I used to have quite a bit of fun with it, but lately here, I got tired of seeing so much of the same thing. A pinner can also monetize an item, and you can like, comment on or repin an item to your own board. If you’d like a view of mine, let me know. There’s also which is newer than Pinterest, and has a few features, such as being able to keep something private and a couple of pinterest/ sites geared mainly to men – (I know, stereotypes, I didn’t make this up… ) Dartitup and Manteresting. I hope I haven’t clogged up your great post… I would like to respond to some of the questions you present.

    • Wow. So much more than I even imagined. I think I got an invite a while back, but never did anything with it. Maybe it expired. I would be interested in checking your’s out just to see what all the fuss is about. Maybe I could do something with my photography passion there. I don’t know – so many possibilities, I get overwhelmed sometimes. By the way, a comment is ALWAYS appreciated and never clogging up my post! Thanks for reading and for your guidance.

  7. Uncomfortable?….. Um, major understatement! I don’t want objects knowing more about me than I know about me. Creepy! Also, I don’t like the computer monitor idea only because I like things to be organized and convenient when it comes to things like that. It’s too anti-simplistic. The other day one of my neighbors said that her kid came home and said scientists were trying to create a cell phone that could read your thoughts so it knew what you wanted to do. I would be afraid of what it would pick up in my brain! I think I’d be in a lot of trouble…… LOL! Some of it seems too invasive. And if that information (straight out of my brain) is on technology, then wouldn’t the government be able to get a hold of it quite simply? Not to sound conspiracy theorist here, but that would actually be one time I’d be worried about stuff like that. I WISH they could create a medicine or freaking vaccination to get rid of phlegm! It’s evil… My sister has a good one. She wishes they could create something that would dissolve and destroy toxins and pollutants in the water to save the underwater life.

  8. the curtain raiser

    A painless needle/ injection would be my pick. It would save a lot grief in my household.

  9. I love the in car alert system for paramedics. That should be mandatory!

  10. If you consider the technological achievements of the past couple of decades incredible, I often think about my paternal grandfather who was born in 1889 and died in 1987 at the age of 94. He went from horse and buggy days to landing a man on the moon! He was pretty cool with it, considering all he’d seen in his lifetime, although I’m sure the increased cost for everything must have been aggravating.

    My maternal grandmother, who was born about 13 years later, rejected a lot of the technology that would have made her life easier. When she died in 2000, she was still using a wringer washer, a push mower to cut her grass (no electricity or gas) and she refused our efforts to teach her how to record her programs on a VCR, returning the machine and continuing to miss her shows!

    I sometimes think we’d be better off without all the distractions and I’m not all that sure I want to live in a Jetsons future. Maybe I’m just getting old like my grandparents, although I love to read science fiction. It’s fun to speculate about gadgets that do such amazing things, but I don’t think I want a suit that tells me I’m not active enough. I already know that! 🙂

    • I’m with you on that one! But the idea of a painless needle and some of the other ideas people came up with here sound great to me! Yeah, I would love to see what my grandparents would have to say about Facebook and iPads! Thanks so much for your comment and for reading!

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