Before reading the passage, read the questions carefully and then try to find the answers as you read the passage.
1. Where can the computer find its applications?
2. What is the silicon1 microchip?
3. What is the future of computers?
A Look at Tomorrow
1. Futurists love computers. After all, 40 years ago electronic digital computers didn't exist; today microchips as tiny as a baby's fingernail are making all sorts of tasks faster and easier. Surely the future holds still more miracles.
2. Some of the computer experiments now going on inspire exciting visions of the future. For example, scientists are working on devices that can electronically perform some sight and hearing functions, which could make life easier for the blind and deaf. They're also working on artificial arms and legs that respond to the electric impulses produced by the human brain. Scientists hope that some day a person who's lost an arm could still have near-normal brain control over an artificial arm.
3. Video games, computerized special effects in movies, and real-life training machines now being used by the U. S. Army are causing some people to predict new educational uses for computers. Computers could some day be used to simulate travel to other planets, to explore the ocean floor, or to look inside an atom.
4. Experiments with electronic banking2 and shopping inspire predictions that these activities will soon be done from home computer terminals. Cars, too, might be equipped with computers to help drivers find their way around (Honda has one in an experimental car) -or to communicate with home an