7 'tech superheroes' to watch in 2015

Story highlights

  • Digital Futures presenter Shivvy Jervis chooses her tech heroes for 2015
  • She predicts these women will change our lives in the next 12 months
  • Their inventions range from food printers to genetic databases

Shivvy Jervis is the creator and presenter of Digital Futures and a Britain's Women of the Future 2014 nominee

(CNN)If anyone was going to create a time machine that could tell us the big tech inventions of 2015, it's these women.

From a super strong moldable glue, to 3D food printers, and laboratories growing human bones, these are the big ideas from some of science's brightest minds.
    These seven "tech superheroes" are set to have a major impact on our lives in the next 12 months, according to Shivvy Jervis, creator and presenter of innovation series, Digital Futures.
    She predicts the ones to watch in 2015.
    Shivvy Jervis, creator and presenter of innovation series, Digital Futures.

    1. The tech-for-good contender

    The "Embrace" smartwatch.
    Who: Rosalind Picard, co-founder of computing and human analytics start-up Empatica, and researcher at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's media lab.
    Nationality: American
    Age: 52
    Big idea: A smartwatch, called "Embrace," that uses sensors to gauge the wearer's stress levels and provide medical readings.
    Why it matters: The prime purpose of this nifty device isn't merely to tell us when we're feeling irked. It is aimed at those with epilepsy by helping detect convulsive seizures.

    2. The social cause defender

    Who: Desiree Vargas Wrigley, co-founder and CEO of crowdfunding medical platform, Giveforward.
    Nationality: Costa Rican
    Age: 32
    Big idea: A website dedicated to crowdsourcing medical expenses which has so far raised over $100 million. The money goes towards things such as travel for medical treatment, equipment, "bucket lists" for terminal illness, and funeral costs.
    Why it matters: It opens up the power of the masses to those who desperately need funding for critical medical treatment.

    3. The not-so-mad scientist

    New material "Sugru" allows users to "hack their products."
    Who: Jane ní Dhulchaointigh, inventor of new material Sugru.
    Nationality: Irish
    Age: 35
    Big idea: A moldable glue, called "Sugru," that sticks to anything from glass to wood, and turns into a strong, flexible rubber overnight.
    Why it matters: This self-setting material allows people to "hack their products" -- modifying, fixing, and generally making regular objects better. Added to that, Sugru is waterproof, adhesive, and heat-resistant.

    4. The ace forecaster

    Who: Kathryn Myronuk, Director of Research at Singularity University
    Nationality: American-Canadian
    Age: 45
    Big idea: Described as a "knowledge sommelier" by WIRED magazine, Myronuk helped create Singularity University in Silicon Valley -- an organization devoted to studying how different technologies will affect the world over the next decade.
    Why it matters: Myronuk's focus is on unearthing and forecasting the truly high impact ideas that will shape our futures. She specializes in rapidly changing technologies.

    5. The tech foodie

    "Foodini" is a 3D food printer.
    Who: Lynette Kucsma, co-founder of Natural Machines, a company that makes 3D food printers.
    Nationality: American
    Age: 43
    Big idea: Foodini -- a 3D printer that creates everything from pasta, to burgers, and macaroons. Users simply load the ingredients into steel capsules, and watch them squeeze out as complete meals.
    Why it matters: This clever kitchen appliance brings together the worlds of design, food and technology.

    6. The biotech whiz

    Who: Nina Tandon, CEO and co-founder of EpiBone
    Age: 35
    Nationality: American
    Big idea: EpiBone, the world's first company growing living human bones for skeletal reconstruction.
    Why it matters: This pioneering technology uses a patient's own stem cells to construct a defect-free bone graft to correct that patient's specific bone problem. It aims to provide bone grafts that will provide exact defect repair and shorter recovery times -- all without the complications of foreign body implantation.

    7. The genetics genius

    Anne Wojcicki, founder of 23andme.
    Who: Anne Wojcicki, founder of one of the world's largest database of individual genetic information, 23andme
    Nationality: American
    Age: 41
    Big idea: One of the world's largest databases of genetic information about individuals -- allowing consumers to have access to their own genetic information and commercial and academic researchers to better understand and develop new drugs and diagnostics.
    Why it matters: By virtue of being web-based, it is greatly economical and has reduced the high costs associated with research spending.