When you think of a functional kitchen 30, or even 50 years from now, what do you imagine being there as you sit sipping your coffee in the morning in an ordinary kitchen of the present? Do you imagine robots serving you omelettes or a smart fridge letting you know what recipes are possible for dinner with the current contents of your refrigerator? According to the Observer Tech Monthly, all of these ideas are a definite possibility of the future, among many other concepts that seem impossible to us presently.
Scientists are realising that our planet can only sustain itself for a limited amount of time and are constantly looking for ways to reduce the mark we leave on earth and improve the environment. Concepts like water recycling and dry washing (where water is replaced by dry ice for washing) are being tested to improve our consumption of water. With water shortages anticipated to shape the next 100 years and global warming becoming a reality, kitchens need to be able to help humans conserve water.
Another major dilemma is that of supply and demand. With the human population growing indefinitely and the supply of food shrinking, scientists are experimenting with ideas like urban cultivation, lab-grown meat, an insect grower and even urban bee keeping. For example, using automated hydroponic systems, humans will be able to grow their own food within the comfort of their home. This would be financially efficient but also environmentally beneficial. With this in mind, another idea that has the potential to aid the problem of supply and demand is food printing. Companies like NASA are investing large amounts of money into research and development of this concept and it is predicted that soon enough, humans will be able to print at home, not only simple foods like vegetables and fruits but more complex items like burgers and ravioli.
If none of the concepts mentioned above seem out of the ordinary or futuristic to you, try to imagine having a robot that understands commands and retrieves objects, a cleaning swarm of flying mini robots designed to clean surfaces around the kitchen, or a fridge that can communicate what lunch can be made with its contents. Either way, the future of kitchens is going to contain many surprises and experiments that our modern day kitchens can learn from.
By Darya Vselubsky