Albert Lai, founder of bubbleshare recently presented his view of where we are headed next as part of the Mind-to-Market Breakfast series organized by the Ontario Centre of Excellence, Canada. The network is the phone is the key slogan for Web 3.0.
Given the increasing capacity and sophistication of mobile phones & networks and the worldwide trends in social networking and user generated content combined with social/behavioural and market factors, he forecasts the next wave to be applications that bring the network to your palm and build innovative applications over data. For example, using the social networking capabilities of Facebook, developers are now creating applications that exploit the social network.
IBM Canada’s President, Dan Fortin, talks about the “next 5 in 5” – five major “life-changing” areas of innovation – portable networked medical devices, virtualization (CERAS – Centre for Excellence in Research for Adaptive Systems), environment (Project Big Green, more than USD 1 billion annually) – e.g. conserving energy that powers the exponentially increasing levels of power and cooling requirements of infrastructure we run, especially in datacenters, virtual worlds (secondlife, clubpenguin) – shared user generated persistent worlds for social collaboration and rich interactivity (collaborated with circuitcity to create a virtual store in 3D, learn how to use your new phone, fix a problem in 3D immersive environments, remote medicine, business collaboration), and, lastly, real time translation (next five years this technology will be embedded everywhere breaking language barriers in the global economy – think of how social networks are not only formed around culture but also around language) – MASTOR (mutilingual automatic speech to speech translation) – automatic sign language translation etc.
Obviously these innovations mentioned by Dan and the trends from Albert, share a lot of common ground and need to be paid a lot of attention from us in the learning and technology industry. It is clear that advanced networking, increased sophistication and capacity of computing power, collaboration is giving rise to a breed of new applications and methods that shall revolutionize markets and communities globally.
It is an exciting world to be in, and as Albert says, if you want to innovate there is no time that is right more than now. Dan leaves us by saying we need to collaborate and share risks now in order to grow.