The New Year already promises to be an interesting one
By Mercedes Deutscher, Staff Writer
We might not have the superfast travel technology but the year 2015 has a lot to offer and watch out for. Elections, Star Wars, Eurozone, and S6 are some expected events and releases which the world will look forward to.
At this time during any year, we are often filled with resolutions and eagerly anticipate what will take place during the year. The year 2015 is no exception. Although it’s impossible to predict everything that will happen in the future, it is exciting to look forward to this year’s anticipated politics, events, and innovations.
Politics in Canada
It is highly probable, if not certain, that the 42nd federal election will take place this year on October 19. The frontrunners for this election are current PM and Conservative leader Stephen Harper, Justin Trudeau of the Liberal party, and Thomas Mulcair of the NDP.
In the previous federal election, the Conservative government won a majority government. However, according to current polls, that may change. Since the 2011 election, the Liberal party’s popularity skyrocketed from third place to first. This change in public opinion is most likely due to the rise of Justin Trudeau, son of former Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, as the party’s leader in 2013.
Mulcair has brought forth the promise of a $15-minimum wage if his party is elected to power, while the Harper government has reformed employment insurance rates to better suit the small businesses.
Politics around the world
The Eurozone is continuing to grow. On January 1, Lithuania became the 19th country to join the Eurozone. The euro replaced the litas as the nation’s currency.
The United States and South Korea are expected to dissolve the post-Korean War Combined Forces Command. The Command was created in 1978, two decades following the end of the Korean War.
Queen Elizabeth II is the second-longest reigning monarch (after Queen Victoria). If the Queen is still reigning on September 9, 2015, she will surpass Queen Victoria as the longest reigning monarch.
Although Americans won’t be heading to the polls until November 2016, the US and the world can expect the Presidential election campaigns to begin early. As of now, it appears that either Hillary Clinton or current Vice President Joe Biden will be running for President for the Democratic Party. As for the Republican Party, Rick Santorum, former US Senator of Pennsylvania; and Michelle Bachmann, the US Representative from Minnesota, have both expressed interest in running.
It looks like 2015 is shaping up to be a big year for NASA.
In April, NASA’s Dawn space probe is scheduled to arrive at Ceres, a dwarf planet that is also the largest object in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. Visiting Ceres is the second half of Dawn’s mission, after previously visiting protoplanet Vesta. Should Dawn successfully orbit Ceres, it will be the first time a spacecraft orbited two separated extraterrestrial bodies.
In July, NASA’s New Horizons, launched in 2006, is set to fly by Pluto and Charon. At that point, New Horizons will explore the area for five months. After its exploration, New Horizons will make its way towards Kuiper Belt and eventually out of the solar system.
Another project that NASA is starting on in July is the LISA Pathfinder spacecraft. This spacecraft is built to research gravity and see if two free-falling bodies follow geodesics in spacetime.
Metal foam, a new material being developed by German engineers, will help make future trains much faster, safer, and lighter. It will likely be experimented with by August 2015.
Much to the disappointment of Back to the Future II fans, there are no planned releases of a hover board.
Starting this year, 3D printing is expected to become more affordable, partially due to the industrial use. The use of 3D printers will be also increased in biomedical and consumer applications.
There are several anticipated smartphones being released. Although Apple hasn’t hinted at any new releases following the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, the Galaxy S6 is expected to be released, and is hoped to recover the company’s losses after the unsuccessful S5. The S6 has some great internal hardware, such as 4GB RAM, 5.2 inches of ultra high-definition display, Android 5.0, 21 MP that record at 8K resolution, and more.
Other major smartphones to be released in 2015 include the Sony Xperia Z4, HTC One M9, and the LG G4.
Both Apple and Samsung are releasing new tablets this year. Apple is releasing the iPad 7, the iPad Air 3, and the iPad Mini 4. All of these iPads run on iOS 8, with fantastic retina screens, the touch ID finger sensor, and a fast Apple A8X processor.
2015 is also going to be host to several new and updated operating systems. Windows 10 has an expected 2015 release. Many consumers are hoping that Windows 10 is the Windows 7 upgrade that they wished that Windows 8 would be. More details about Windows 10 will be released at Microsoft’s Build Conference in April.
As for Apple, iOS 9 will be coming to iPhones in September.
While the following gadgets have been discussed often over 2014, it is in 2015 that they will be released. The Oculus Rift, a headset that allows the user to experience a 3D virtual reality display, will hit the market in 2015. Although the official release date has not been announced, the developers have stated that they are very close to a final release.
The Apple Watch, which was originally expected to be released this past fall, is now expected to be released in the spring.
While an early version has already been released in the UK, Google Glass has an expected public release later this year.
Several well-anticipated game titles will be hitting the shelves. Although we won’t know all of the big game titles until E3, gamers can pick up Metal Gear Solid V: Phantom Pain, Batman: Arkham Knight, Red Dead Redemption 2, and Halo 5: Guardians.
The world is expecting some very exciting and much-awaited movie releases. Several famous franchises will continue.
After three years, Marvel will release the much-anticipated The Avenger sequel, The Avengers: Age of Ultron, on May 1. Marvel will also release a new version of The Fantastic Four in August.
The Hunger Games saga will come to a close with The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 2, in late November. Another successful dystopian series, Divergent, will get a continuation in Insurgent, expected for a March release.
Arguably the most anticipated movie release for 2015 is Star Wars: The Force Awakens, which will be released on December 18. The seventh instalment (and seventh episode) of the Star Wars saga comes 10 years after the prequel trilogy ended, and 38 years after the release of the original Star Wars film.
There are some upcoming events in 2015 to be held in Vancouver and nearby areas which you wouldn’t want to miss as well! You can go to www.tourismvancouver.com and look for some great adventurous, amusing, and fun events of your interest.