IBM reveals five innovations that will change our lives within five years

This year’s IBM 5 in 5 explores the idea that everything will learn – driven by a new era of cognitive systems where machines will learn, reason and engage with us in a more natural and personalised way. Over time these computers will get smarter and more customised through interactions with data, devices and people.

> See also: IBM to offer Watson as a development platform

They will help us take on what may have been seen as unsolvable problems by using all the information that surrounds us and bringing the right insight or suggestion to our fingertips right when it’s most needed.

A new era in computing will lead to breakthroughs that will amplify human abilities, assist us in making good choices, look out for us and help us navigate our world in powerful new ways. 

IBM's 5 in 5 for 2013 (click for videos):


In five years, classrooms will learn about you, and personalise coursework accordingly. It's the end of the era of one-size-fits-all education, and the beginning of personalised learning. 


In the next five years, buying local will beat online. Merging the tactility and immediacy of physical retail with the richness and personalization of online, local shops will make online-only stores seem downright quaint.

Smarter cities: 

In five years, the city will help you live in it. You'll play a direct role in the decision-making process, and your city will become a direct reflection of everyone who lives there. 


In five years, a digital guardian will protect you online. Security is evolving from being based on rules, like passwords, to being automatic and made stronger through us just being us. 


In five years, doctors will routinely use your DNA to keep you well. Cancer will be treated on a DNA level in both the patient and tumor, at a scale and speed never before possible. 

Avatar photo

Ben Rossi

Ben was Vitesse Media's editorial director, leading content creation and editorial strategy across all Vitesse products, including its market-leading B2B and consumer magazines, websites, research and...