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Will Wearable Computing Improve Your Workouts?

A new technology called Moov wants to be your own personal trainer. A wearable fitness gadget, Moov analyzes an exerciser's form, offering real-time suggestions on how to improve workouts. The small, plastic disc attaches to a specfic body part that a wearer wants to analyze during a work: A runner can place the device in his or her shoe, for example, or a cardio-boxer can fit the technology on his or her wrist. By pairing with an app, the Moov tracks movement and body position to provide instant feedback and details about one's progress.

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Will Retinal Displays Catch On?

The Glyph headset, from the Ann Arbor, MI-based Avegant, beams video into a user's eyes, without requiring a screen. To emulate the way the eye processes images, the technology uses a set of 2 million microscopic mirrors to reflect visuals, even 3D content, into the eye. The headset’s screen can be connected to personal computers, the Xbox, the PlayStation, and Android devices. To address style concerns, Glyph looks like a wearable headset. What do you think? Will retinal displays catch on?

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Will Connected Eyewear Replace Traditional Glasses?

Google recently announced that it will add Google Glass options for prescription glasses. The search giant's wearable computer features an optical head-mounted display that presents information in a smartphone-like format. "We're going to reach some day, hopefully it will be soon, where people will wonder 'why would I want traditional glasses? They don't do X, Y or Z,' " said Google Glass Product Director Steve Lee.

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Will "Anticipatory Shipping" Catch on?

Amazon recently obtained a patent for "anticipatory shipping" — a system of delivering products to customers before they place an order. Using predictive analytics, such as previous searches and customer wish lists, the company could potentially ship items to a hub in the customer’s area ahead of time. When users are ready to buy the item, it can then show up quickly, perhaps as soon as a few hours. There is a financial risk, however; if the company inaccurately predicts what a customer wants, then shipping costs are wasted.

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Will 3D Printers Find a Place in the Home?

The 3D printing industry has new offerings today, specifically cheaper, easier-to-use hardware and online marketplaces filled with predesigned files. MakerBot, for example, recently announced a new one-button MakerBot Mini. Files can be sent directly to the compact printer from a mobile phone or tablet over Wi-Fi, and the Mini will create the object in PLA plastic. A barrier to mass adoption of 3-D printers is price, however.

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Are Driverless Cars Safer?

Major car companies have showcased their latest prototypes at this month's International Consumer Electronics Show. BMW and Audi, for example, unveiled their driverless car technology and conducted demonstrations. Researchers and makers of driverless cars say the technology will be far safer than people-driven vehicles because they eliminate unpredictable human errors like distracted or drunk driving, or poor reactions to emergency situations.

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Will 'Digital Guardians' Improve Security?

In December of 2013, IBM predicted that "in five years, each of us could be protected with our own digital guardian that will become trained to focus on the people and items it is entrusted with, offering a new level of identity theft protection." A program, for example, can learn your online habits to confirm your identity and better detect a difference between normal or unusual activity.

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