The NextGen system is pretty interesting. A number of changes are being swept across the board, with quite a few occurring in everyday ATC functions.
It is my hope that a wider form of text-to-plane communication will be achieved one day. Several center controls in Canada and a number of clearance delivery frequencies, one of which is running at KCLT, have switched entirely to a form of communication with electronic strips. No verbal contact is required with the aircraft- the pilot accepts or “unables” the CD/routing, very much like here in the sim. Prevents frequency chatter, clog ups, and misunderstandings! If this technological advancement allows me to become a controller one day, I will seriously die the happiest man on earth.
Of course, all the other stuff is cool too. Just my $0.02. ;)