Ever wondered how to grow organs in a lab or potatoes on Mars? From 3D printing to space exploration, here we round up seven important tech trends and highlight how you can tackle them with the help of free online courses on FutureLearn.
1. 3D Printing
3D printers now cost as little as $100 and people are using them to make everything from cruet sets to toothpaste squeezers. The most important applications of all are in healthcare though, where prosthetics, implants and even organs are starting to be 3D printed. Prepare to be mind blown with our Bioprinting: 3D Printing Body Parts course.
2. Big Data
It’s been called the “sexiest job of the 21st century” and McKinsey predicts that demand for data scientists will exceed supply by more than 50% by 2018. So how do you hop aboard the big data bandwagon? Get a leg up with the courses Big Data: Mathematical Modelling or Big Data: Data Visualisation.
When everyone from Mark Zuck to Snoop Dogg tells us we should learn to code, it’s probably time to listen up. You could start with the widely-used programming language Python with Learn to Code for Data Analysis (no coding experience required), before getting to grips with Functional Programming in Haskell.
4. Cyber Security
Want to know your virus from your trojan? Keen to figure out what bitcoin and blockchain are all about? As our lives increasingly depend on digital services, the need to understand cyber security is super important. Turn your laptop into Fort Knox with Introduction to Cyber Security or Cyber Security: Safety at Home, Online, in Life.
5. Internet of Things
As more and more devices are connected to the internet and able to talk to each other, we’re seeing the emergence of everything from smart, self-organising factories to smart, self-ordering fridges. Don’t be a 21st century luddite – join the fourth industrial revolution with The Internet of Things and Smart Cities.
Research from McKinsey suggests that robots could automate 45% of the activities people are paid to do and about 60% of jobs could see 30+% of their activities automated. Rather than worrying about robots taking your job, start making them with Building a Future with Robots and Introducing Robotics.
7. Space Exploration
With visionaries like Sir Richard Branson and Elon Musk striving to make space travel more affordable with Virgin Galactic and SpaceX respectively, the idea of a trip to the moon or maybe even Mars isn’t as fanciful as it once was. Channel your inner Mark Watney and prepare for a red planet adventure with How to Survive on Mars.