One example is software agents, which will be semi-autonomous virtual entities that handle simple chores for a person. A software agent might be able to locate the slides for a presentation, or talk to another person's software agent to coordinate an activity.
"They'll be able to recruit other agents as needed to come up with the desired outcome. This is something that will happen," Rusinkiewicz says. "It may be your agent talking to my agent for this interview 25 years from now."~~
21. A fundamentally different Internet architecture may evolve.
Researchers at PARC are working on a new underlying architecture for the Internet called content-centric networking that they hope will be adopted in the next decade or two.
The Internet was designed 40 years ago to make connections between two end points, and over the years it has been overlaid with systems for caching content closer to end users. PARC envisions a new Internet architecture that is designed from the ground up to distribute content, software and services to end users.
"Content centric networking doesn't have the concept of end points," explains Van Jacobson, a PARC Research Fellow. "If you're asking for something, it's like standing up in a room and asking for the time. Anybody that has that information can reply with it. It turns out that you can make a communication model that's as efficient as IP by removing the source-and-destination model."
Last September, PARC and a team of 10 universities received a three-year, $8 million research grant from the National Science Foundation's Future Internet Architecture program. Jacobson estimates that it will take another 10 years after the NSF grant is complete for the content centric networking scheme to be widely deployed.
Jacobson says the content centric networking approach will create less long-distance traffic on the Internet and will be more energy efficient because all content is served up closer to the user. It also may improve the information security landscape.
"Right now, our security model is that we secure containers of information and we secure the process of communications," Jacobson says. "If you go to a model where you're asking for information, and information has a name but not a location...you can secure the information. All of our packets are cryptographically signed by the producer of that entity."
22. Information security will continue to be a problem.
We'll have more powerful encryption systems 25 years from now, but it's unlikely that we will have eradicated the information security problem entirely.
BY THE NUMBERS: Six worst Internet routing attacks
"There will be a constant battle between people who want to protect information and people who want to destroy information," Newell says. "I don't see that fight going away. There are always going to be people who want to steal from you and people who want to monitor you, and they will have the same compute power available."
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