New tools and techniques will bring 3D printing power to corporations and the masses. New 3D printing tools and techniques are empowering everyone from global corporations to do-it-yourselfers to create new devices and realize new concepts more quickly, cheaply, and easily than ever -- from car parts, batteries, prosthetics, and computer chips to jewelry, clothing, firearms, and even pizza. A future where digital functionality can be "printed into" a physical object will continue to be built on in 2014, driven by new toolkits, services, and platforms, and innovative business models and processes, such as online 3D printing bureaus and crowdfunding sites.
Online courses demand new technological approaches. These days, students from all corners of the world can sign up for online classes to study everything from computer science, digital signal processing, and machine learning to European history, psychology, and astronomy -- and all for free. As interest in Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) continues to explode, there will be a corresponding need for technology to support these new learning systems and styles.
Mobile infrastructure must catch up with user needs and demands. Ubiquitous mobile computing is all around us, not only when we use smartphones to connect with friends and family across states and countries, but also when we use ticketing systems on buses and trains, purchase food from mobile vendors, watch videos, and listen to music on our phones and MP3 players. As a result, mobile computing systems must rise to the demand.
New risks and concerns about social network privacy. Social networks have quickly become the key organizing principle of Internet communication and collaboration. Although Internet-enabled social networks offer tremendous opportunities, widespread interest in and growth of these systems raises new risks and growing concerns. For instance, social network users can be bullied, their pictures can be stolen, or their status posts can reach unwanted audiences.
Intelligent systems and assistive devices will advance smart healthcare. Computing plays an important role in many facets of our lives, increasingly so in aspects of individual and social well-being. Individual health is encouraged with the development of intelligent systems, apps, gadgets, and mobile systems that focus on diet, exercise, and information provision. Medication, surgery, and assistive devices rely on intelligent systems to analyze data and human responses, guiding the implementation and management of therapies and interventions.
Agencies will attempt to tackle e-government interoperability issues. Electronic government, e-government, or digital government refers to the use of information and communication technology to provide and improve government services, transactions, and interactions with citizens, businesses, and other arms of government. Interoperability is essential to broad success in e-government. Challenges emerging in this area focus on e-government interoperability in cloud computing, open government, and smart city initiatives.
Scientific cloud computing will further change how science is done to help solve "grand challenges." Scientific computing has already begun to change how science is done, enabling scientific breakthroughs through new kinds of experiments that would have been impossible only a decade ago. It is the key to solving grand challenges in many domains and providing breakthroughs in new knowledge, and it comes in many shapes and forms: high-performance computing, high-throughput computing, many-task computing, and data-intensive computing. Big data is generating datasets that are increasing exponentially in both complexity and volume, making their analysis, archival, and sharing one of the grand challenges of the 21st century.