At Australia's Tourism Futures conference, futurologist Ian Yeoman (of New Zealand's University of Wellington) forecast artificial resorts with robot staff, and yep, even robot prostitutes could become a reality.
"But you're talking about extreme futures," he admitted.
Dr Yeoman's talk centred on what the world might be like in 2050. He explained that indoor tourism could be the next big thing due to global warming, an older population, plus food, water and jet fuel problems. He imagines indoor resorts with artificial ski centres and recreated landscapes; even giant sea-faring cruise ships. He also predicts rooms with chemical wallpapers that can change colour to suit a guest's mood.
"Robotics will become important, because you're going to have labour shortages in the future,'' he said…Even robot "prostitutes'' that would not pass on diseases such as HIV could make an appearance."