Tech Trends 2012

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11 Ιαν 2012 (πριν από 5 χρόνια και 10 μήνες)

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While the Internet is buzzing with ways to survive the last year of the world (according to the ancient Mayan Calendar), frogs are thinking of other things that will shape culture this year. We asked frogs from across the globe to share their personal favorite tech trends that’ll crop up this year and what their impact would be on design, business, entertainment, and our daily routines.

8
Tech
Trends
2012
Monday, January 9, 12
2012 has arrived.
While the Internet is buzzing with ways to survive
the last year of the world (according to the ancient
Mayan Calendar), frogs are thinking of other things
that will shape culture this year. We asked frogs
from across the globe to share their personal
favorite tech trends that’ll crop up this year and
what their impact would be on design, business,
entertainment, and our daily routines. We had frogs
from all disciplines—from strategy to engineering—
draw from their passions and expertise to offer
their input. Without doubt, 2012 is shaping up to be
a year of hyper-connected, highly-personal, ultra-
smart computing that, well, might just skip the
computer altogether.
 
 
Here’s what our tech forecasters predict for 2012.
 
Monday, January 9, 12
8
Connected
Cities
The modern city is becoming a pointer system, the
new URL, for tomorrow’s hybrid digital–physical
environment. Today's Facebook will be
complimented by tomorrow's Placebook.
Explosive innovation and adoption of computing,
mobile devices, and rich sources of data are
changing the cities in which we live, work, and
play. It's about us, and how computing in the
context of our cities is changing how we live. A
digital landscape overlays our physical world and
is expanding to offer ever-richer experiences that
compliment, and in emerging cases, replace the
physical experience. In the meta–cities of the
future, computing isn't just with us; it surrounds
us, and it uses the context of our environment to
empower us in more natural, yet powerful ways.
by Chief Creative Officer Mark Rolston
Monday, January 9, 12
8
A new pattern of computing is emerging where
interactions with technology will be
conversational. We’ll literally talk to them and they
to us. Voice recognition is a key enabler of this.
Apple’s Siri is the headliner, of course, but Ford has
been employing Microsoft
Sync—which
also uses
voice control extensively—in its cars for a few
years. It's being smart about offering it not just in
its high–end models or Lincoln premium brand,
but in less expensive cars that appeal to younger
buyers. It's a great way to get a new generation
engaged with the Ford brand. Voice recognition
technology has finally hit its tipping point of
capability, and the stage is being set for a
generation of users to start assuming voice
control, just as touch control is now assumed for
any screen. However, the spoken word is only a
fragment of any conversation.
 
Computer vision—
especially depth sensing cameras—will be able to
pick up non-verbal cues such as gesturing or body
language that complete human communication.
 

When both voice and gesture comprehension are
paired, humans will be able to address technology
naturally, without command jargon.
 
The tactical
steps being taken in 2012 are to “design the
human” as the primary interface device in support
of that.
by Senior Principal Design Technologist Jared Ficklin, Executive Strategy Director Robert Tuttle, and
Assistant Vice President Marketing Adam Richardson
Taking Computers
Out of Computing
Monday, January 9, 12
8
Quantified
Selves
We’ll see the launch of open data aggregation
platforms that provide API's for third party
sensors, front-end applications, and analysis
engines. A self-tracking enthusiast will be able to
merge her Fitbit, Jawbone, Zeo, Nike plus, and
Withings data to see a comprehensive overview of
her health and lifestyle. Driven initially by a
simplification benefit, the long-term power of this
trend will be the ability to construct ever-greater
value and insight on top of the data. The smarter
the se
rvices get, the simpler and more valuable
their insights will become. At a presentation level,
I believe we will move beyond the current
 
data
visualization
 
trends towards humanized
suggestions that prompt and guide individual
action.
by Creative Director Thomas Sutton
Monday, January 9, 12
8
The Reductive Social Network:
Technology Finally Gets Personal
Facebook is not personal. It is social, but it is
evolving into the next iteration of the Internet.
 
Today’s technologies, products, and services do
not adequately serve the human need for intimacy
and personal connections. The early days of
Facebook and Flickr felt this way, but now our
social networks and hard drives are swamped with
a deluge of digital data that we can't process. Our
Internet personalities have evolved into amplified
personas that aren't truly us.
 
The current fervor
around cloud computing only exacerbates the
problem: now my 10,000 digital photos are in the
ether, but am I any more emotionally connected
with them and sharing them with my three closest
friends in a meaningful way? 2012 is about culling
from the terabytes and sharing with the single
digits. In 2012, product companies will deliver new
products that begin narrowing the social circle and
capturing intimacy and authenticity.
by Vice President of Business Development Nathan Weyer
Monday, January 9, 12
ç
For the past decade we have been seeing a
convergence of multiple pieces of hardware into
fewer generalist devices. The smart phone is the
almost perfect example of the convergent digital
device as Swiss Army knife. It has absorbed much
of the most common use cases for portable
devices, like music and video consumption, digital
photo and video capture, email and calendar, and
simple things like time keeping. I read countless
blog posts proclaiming that dedicated devices, like
the camera and the watch, would rapidly shrivel
and die. Instead, I think new technologies will
provide opportunities for them to get better. When
users do purchase a dedicated device, they are
gravitating towards products with higher quality
and better design to elevate their experience. It
turns out that the convergent device is killing the
commodity digital product while forcing everything
else to improve. This is presenting companies and
brands with an opportunity to do what designers
love: make things better!
by Creative Director Michael DiTullo
Convergence
Causing Specialization
Monday, January 9, 12
8
Interaction
Choreography
User interaction with technology is going above
the glass.
 
You no longer need an explicit tool or
even direct manipulation to drive a user interface.
With the ability of technology, like the Microsoft
Kinect, to see users’ movements in space, gestures
are being added to traditional methods in new
layers of interaction. Designing for this new layer of
interaction requires new thinking about dexterity,
ergonomics, and whether someone might feel silly
or offensive with certain gestures.
 
We are so
involved in this space right now, that we’ve had to
move our design technologists’ desks to create
enough room for all the hand waving design.
by Senior Principal Design Technologist Jared Ficklin
Monday, January 9, 12
8
Reputation Enhanced Lending and
Trading Becomes Mainstream
The recession, coupled with the rise of the so-
called Collaborative Consumption or Shared
Economy, has the early–adopter community
abuzz with notions of the end of consumption.
Companies like AirBnB and Zimride that allow
people to open their homes or their cars to share
or loan for a fee are cited as examples of new ways
of using and exchanging goods and services.
 
But
the really interesting trend here is that new forms
of trust are being enabled by social networking
technology.
 
We all joined Facebook and LinkedIn
to stay in touch with colleagues and friends, but
the upshot of mass adoption is that we can check
up on virtually everyone we come
across.
 
Individuals who have never met or
transacted with one another are using social
networks to validate each other. If you are just
selling goods on Craigslist, it doesn’t really matter
whether the buyer is a good person or a bad one: I
take the cash, you take my goods, and you are
gone.
 
But if I am renting something to you, trust
becomes critical.
 
I want to know that you are not a
crook, or a thief, or a bad egg.
 
By linking person-
to-person transactions to social networks, we are
reducing the need for cash deposits and other
financial remedies to the bad egg problem.
 
While
logging into third party websites using your
Facebook identity is now commonplace, we are
beginning to see person-to-person exchanges
making use of social networks to broker trust. For
example, before you stay at someone’s spare
bedroom via AirBnB, you have to sign in with your
profile. I recently rented someone’s house in
Toronto for a few days, and between our respective
social networks we found enough friends,
relatives, and colleagues in common for him to
lend me the property with confidence. In 2012, this
reputation enhanced lending and trading will
become mainstream. We will lease, barter, and
trade with relative strangers, banking on their
reputation and connections.
 
by Assistant Vice President, Strategy Tim Morey
Monday, January 9, 12
8
Base of the Pyramid
Mobile Innovation
Smartphones will make significant inroads into an
entirely new segment: the lower end of the mass
market and the “base of the pyramid.” Huawei's
sub-$100 Android smartphone has already had
significant success in Kenya, and major
manufacturers are quickly following suit across
Africa, India, Southeast Asia, and South America.
These smartphones will not be notable for
hardware innovations, as they're stripped down
versions of their more expensive and feature-
packed brethren. However, they’ll be notable for
the fact that an eager population will be
discovering the world of smartphones and apps for
the first time. This population is filled with
experimenters, tinkerers, and developers who will
unleash a new world of apps that address their
own needs and pain points—those that have been
ignored by those focusing on the top end of the
market.
by Strategy Director Ravi Chhatpar
Monday, January 9, 12
8
Digital Discovery
in the Physical World
The experience of the unstructured discovery of
the physical world is about to get a lot more
interesting in the next few years. 2012 will be a
year of continuing to focus on the digital and
material evolution of "search.”
 
We're already
familiar with a few of the functional (software) and
representational (media) components involved
through the introduction of Siri and services such
as Gowalla or Four Square. The confluence of
complex search and knowledge management
algorithms, and the growing layer of location-
based applications, gives rise to a highly fluid,
seamless integration between physical and digital
contexts. This evolutionary mixture of Wolfram-
Alpha "smarts" and location–based, contextual
intelligence is the (software) basis of all future
"smart space.” Meanwhile, sensors and actuators
of greater acuity may define new modes of
physical and architectural expression.
Of course this may seem an obvious progression
to the Technorati, but for the work-a-day masses
soon to be living in so called smart cities in Asia
and elsewhere in the next decade, the
expectations about how such integrated
"findability" actually feels are already beginning to
be set.
by Creative Director Scott Nazarian

Monday, January 9, 12
8
Flourishing Commerce
in the Post-PC Era
The post-PC channels for commerce have come of
age, and consumers will continue to
 
flock to
mobile, tablet, smart TVs, and game console
platforms to conduct their business.
 
Financial
services firms would find it wise to ready
themselves for this dramatic change in customer
behaviors and expectations.
 
We will likely see
firms convert their successful web experience to a
more streamlined mobile and tablet capability, in
particular.
 
But as consumers' experiences with
these rapidly evolving post-PC platforms matures,
they will expect much more.
 
The post-PC platform
affords mobility, portability, payment capabilities,
video and collaboration, location awareness,
natural language processing, gestures, and so on.
Clever firms will wield this fresh and evolving
palette to craft engaging experiences in the real
and virtual worlds. The aim will be to drive
customer delight, loyalty, and engagement.
 
by Assistant Vice President of Financial Services, Innovation
Strategy Group Toshi Mogi
Monday, January 9, 12
8
We live in the App Age and are entering new
territory.
  
The sexy math behind voice or facial
recognition, real time translation, or even just
assembly of a playlist of music, is no longer the
realm of super computers or even desktops. Smart
phones will run algorithms, and the data to feed
them will also be more fluidly available. Forget
Global Warming models: Consumers will pay good
money for an algorithm that gathers data and
solves everyday problems.
The Age of
the Algorithm
by Senior Principal Design Technologist Jared Ficklin
Monday, January 9, 12
8
Biomimicry
In 2012, we'll see increasing numbers of scientists,
technologists, architects, corporations, and even
governments looking to biomimicry—designing
objects and systems based on or inspired by
patterns in nature—as an efficient innovation
strategy. Why? Often, nature can provide examples
of energy-saving, environmentally-friendly
solutions to a variety of technological challenges.
These solutions have also been "tested" via billions
of years of informal R&D—by animals, plants,
insects, and other participants in the natural world
who have come up with ways of harvesting water
from fog, for example, or possess sleek forms that
are more aerodynamic than traditional man-made
ones. While bio-mimicry has been an emerging
field for some time, in 2012 influential thinkers will
begin to apply biomimetic principles on a larger
scale, including the planning of new cities and the
updating of urban infrastructures. In addition,
experts will also begin exploring the pitfalls of
biomimicry and will also share best practices,
 
as
more case studies are available.
by Consulting Editor Reena Jana
Monday, January 9, 12
8
Reign in
the Clouds!
We're rapidly moving into a technology space
where mobility is becoming less about a set of
devices, and more about the pervasive mist of data
that we all generate with every interaction on the
Internet.
 
Managing, securing, and understanding
this data will play a huge part in technology over
the next few years. Moreover, making that data
comprehensible to the consumer is key. The
question has never really been “is this possible?”
but rather “when will we have an ecosystem of
compelling and useful devices and services that
will integrate seamlessly into people’s lives?” We
think that time is finally arriving in 2012.
by Senior Vice President, Engineering Mark VandenBrink and
Executive Strategy Director Abby Godee
Monday, January 9, 12
8
Remote
Collaboration
When you work in a context where regular
interaction via audio and video between multiple
locations is a necessary part of your daily
activities, you might have experienced great
frustration as of late. With the demand for more
connectivity everyday, between both people and
places, it feels like technology is far behind in
addressing the need to work efficiently and with
the same "directness" of talking to a person in the
same room. Dropped calls, poor reception, and
interrupted video streams are the standard. We are
so far away from a high-def experience that we
may want to reconsider sending a smoke signal.
Make no mistake, technology is moving fast, as
shown by the popularity of Skyping with friends
and family across continents. Unfortunately, the
truth is that most of our conversations across
distances are far from perfect and no fun at all. We
need creative collaboration between design and
technology to rethink these experiences so that
they are more fulfilling and "direct" activities in our
lives.
by Executive Creative Director Holger Hampf
Monday, January 9, 12
8
Re-Shape: Humans Are Analogue
The way of design is only achievable via creative
model-making and prototyping by the designer.
Tools, both real and virtual, connect our mind with
the real world. However, tools also define how we
shape things: tools’ limitations enhance our deep
involvement with them and the materials, and
honing our skills ultimately leads to mastership.
The curse of “easy” digital tools is to become
complacent after relative early “successes.” This
can lead to mediocrity and a loss of creative
excellence. Like the new “polystyrene slates” of
many new electronic products, where excellence is
defined by how well the corners are shaped (a re-
run of 1950‘s boxy design),
our modern-day digital
design software is the cause for zillions of repetitive
and bland products. Charlie Chaplin’s classic film of
mechanized dehumanization,
Modern Times,
is a
déjà vu of our current state.
by frog Founder Hartmut Esslinger
Monday, January 9, 12
Monday, January 9, 12