The impact of technology on modern living is mind-blowing. Tom Trezise, an expert in accelerating innovation in healthcare and in socially responsible leadership, is on the Dean’s Council of Lancaster University where I’m Honorary Professor of Creative Leadership. He sent a note last week addressing technological disruption and preparing people and organizations to succeed. He tracks 25 technologies that will change the way we live. Here they are:
1. Semantic Web
5. Processing Capability and Speed
7. Battery size
10. Data Analytics, Attribution and Value Vectors
14. Social Media
15. Quantum Physics
16. 3D Printing
17. Digital/Smart Manufacturing
20. Machine Learning
22. Cost Curve Reduction i.e. big data storage
23. Rare Earth Minerals Substitutes
25. Delivery Systems i.e. treatment and prevention of disease
If this mind-bending list is not enough, Tom posed the challenge: Determine what is the evolutionary timeline for integrating the readiness of individuals (early adopters to last adopters), culture (what percentage of people and processes are needed to sustain changes), and new technology that will potentially impact your organization.
As the resident radical optimist, I’d say it’s a 90/10 equation between opportunities and issues. The potential technology has for bettering our lives is breath-taking.
According to Stanford adjunct professor and former Baidu scientist Andrew Ng, a rule of thumb is that anything that a human can do in less than one second of mental thinking will be automated. For those in panic mode on employment, a smart observation comes from Dr Michael Naylor, a finance and insurance academic at Massey University: “Jobs are not replaced, activities are. Some activities will be replaced but the impact on any job will depend on the mix of activities in that job. Some activities within most jobs will be untouched, and demand for the remaining activities may even expand.”