"Everything that can be invented has been invented."
--Charles H. Duell, Commissioner, U.S. patent office, 1899.
This infamous quote has been bandied about forever, but let's try to apply it to our times. Sure, the old commissioner was off by a bunch of decades, but what's left to be invented in audio and video now?
Yes, there will be higher than high-definition video, HDMI 1.4, and speakers that sound like real life, but those are refinements of already existing technologies.
Perhaps we've hit an impasse and we're not going to see any really new products for a few decades. What will a 2012 Blu-ray player do that a 2008 player cannot? Oh right, there may not be any Blu-ray players by 2012, there may a new format by then. But what will it do that a 2008 Blu-ray player cannot?
How about an iPod small enough to be injected into your bloodstream? You would just think about a song or movie, and it would play back in your head.
Who knows, maybe by 2012 there will be wireless speakers that don't have any wires. But it might take until 2022 before someone figures out how to make totally wireless speakers that actually sound good.
Maybe the best we can hope for are products that are easy to use--ones that don't come with thick user manuals; they just work. Products so intuitively designed they don't need explanation.
What do you want that doesn't exist now?
Something bigger or smaller than what you have now?
Give us an idea for a totally new audio or video product.
Or if you agree that there's nothing left to invent, by what year were we done?