Real Disruption Happens When Technologies Combine

Disruption is the most recent rhythm of the technology debate. The uberization of everything if often mentioned, so is the disruptive potential of abundance. However disruption is also about finding the right product-market fit.

In a new report, the Institute for the Future argues that:

“technological change is increasingly driven by the combination and recombination of foundational elements.”

So to imagine the future, it is not just about advances in technology, like in computing power or miniaturization, but it is also about the intersection of these technologies. The intersection might be the disruption; completely new oppurtunities and new markets all together.

The report presents a technology horizon map that is designed to help anticipate the future of combinatorial innovations emerging at the intersection of distinct territories. The map presents 20 new innovative combinatorial forecasts you can use to navigate the future as it unfolds. The bigger picture: a more interconnected technology landscape.

Schermafbeelding 2014-07-28 om 10.40.20So click around on the map in 13 “territories”–what it calls “frontiers of innovation”–and then examine the overlaps. Here are a two to get started.

Schermafbeelding 2014-07-28 om 10.45.00If we look at the intersection of networked matter, distributed computation, new competition and A.I, we come across a forecast of the internet as a network of networks. They write: “Over the coming decade, we will see more specialized networks established as an alternative to the Internet as we know it. For example, the emergence of services built into the hardware layer of new network topologies shows promise. This arrangement could dramatically reduce downtime and lead to new smart grids, inexpensive but high-quality video conferencing, and faster financial transactions and swarm computing clusters. Since existing Internet infrastructures will limit many of these possibilities, we will likely see additional fragmentation through tailor-made sub-networks.

Your experience of the Internet will fragment too as entirely new Internets-from finances to health-emerge to leverage flexibility, efficiency, and security gained in new network arrangements. Matching more specialized networks to specific applications will be a functional challenge for organizations, individuals, and network providers. There will be no single Internet but many Internets.”

Schermafbeelding 2014-07-28 om 10.49.30

If we look at another forecast, the one at the intersection of personal XP, Culture & Society and Information networks, they write: “Virtualization and wearable computing devices will combine to create a new wave of social technology. The Oculus Rift, a virtual reality headset for 3D gaming, already allows users to virtually explore real environments from the perspective of a child, and wearable recording devices are beginning to capture the details of everyday life.

While offering the possibility of amplifying compassion, this new technology also raises privacy issues and creates nearly endless marketing and customization opportunities for enterprises.”

There’s a lot more of interesting stuff to read, more things ons biology and the convergence of nature and machines. Play around some more and share what you find most interesting in the comments if you’d like.

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