What’s Trending in 2018

So what do you do when the presents are opened and everyone is napping off a big holiday breakfast/lunch/dinner, read up on what’s trending in tech… at least that’s what I do. The latest article that caught my attention was published by Gartner and is titled “Gartner Top 10 Strategic Technology Trends for 2018.” If you have the time, it’s worth a read.

If you don’t have the time, here is a quick synopsis with some of my thoughts wrapped in.

At the forefront of the article are artificial intelligence and the intertwining of the “real” world with the digital world, or the intelligent mesh. The article aligns the emerging technologies into three areas:

Intelligent: AI, Intelligent Apps, Intelligent Things

Digital: Digital Twins, Cloud to the Edge, Conversational Platform, Immersive Experience

  Mesh: Block Chain, Event Driven, Continuous Adaptive Risk and Trust (Security)

I have to admit that AI has been a long time thought provoker for me, and block chain is getting to be truly disruptive force in commerce, but what really caught my eye were the Cloud to the Edge and the Conversational Platform. The other topics, while very interesting, seem like they are not going to be immediately relevant to majority of the medium and small businesses. Continuous Adaptive Risk and Trust is absolutely relevant, but is the fodder for another post given the size of that topic alone.

So let’s focus on Cloud to the edge first. Simple enough concept: put the collection and base processing resources closer to the actual source/consumer. With advances in IoT and increased computing/storage capabilities, it makes sense. It’s amazing that 2 quad core processors and over a TB of storage can fit in a shoebox with room to spare. The best part of this concept is that it does not exclude cloud. Rather it embraces the idea of centralizing the service oriented model and analytics/correlation in the cloud, and disperses the basic collection and routine processing of data at the edge. If you think about your business, I guarantee there is an application of these principles for you.

Immersive experience in this article is based around AR (Augmented Reality) and VR (Virtual Reality). The ability to deliver AR is already landing in smart phones and light weight headsets. It is a favorite of gamers as well. But I think the article misses a bit here. There are some business applications for these technologies, but what I think they miss is a key application to our daily business routines. What if that video call with your peers or family could bypass the 2 dimensional displays and have some of the depth we get from 3D? What if you could get immersive directional sound on both ends of that video call? It’s coming. At first the business and finance guys will say “Why do we need that?”, and “is it really worth the investment, I don’t see the ROI.” However, once it is here and people get to experience it, they are going to demand it, it will increase remote collaboration and productivity. P.S. – I like our finance team; this was just a generalization J P.S.S. – If you are not using video yet, your way behind and need to get it. It’s more affordable than ever.

Thanks for taking time to give this post a view and thanks to Gartner for a good thought provoking article.

Next post will cover Adaptive Risk and Trust as promised.


Noel-Barber-11Noel Barber is a veteran of the IT industry and serves as the Vice President of Professional Services at ABS. In addition to staying on top of industry trends and changes, Noel works to ensure ABS continuously brings the best technology solutions to our clients.