My initial response to this question was, “Chinese!” I was only half joking. English is the most popular second language in the world and in our increasingly connected world, the people who have an understanding of other languages—particularly Chinese—will be better equipped.
As far as computers go, I studied computer languages in school and even though I wish I had studied different “human” languages, I think understanding computer languages will become even more important in the future, since computers are the universal tools of our time. Practically every aspect of our lives has a computer of some sort embedded into it. Having an understanding of how computers work as well as a curiosity about how to tap into their future potential will be important.
This need is especially true when you consider all of the potential applications that could be created to help us better understand biology and how the world works. We are living in an age where information technology and computing are driving the economy, and I predict computer-driven advances in synthetic biology promise to be even potentially more dramatic for the balance of the century.
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