New Year

As we look at the new year, part of my job is to look forward (and look forward to) new technology, trends and paradigm shifts in our work (and play). This could be new time saving software, a new payment gateway, a tech toy or a new trend or way of working.

Looking to 2016 and beyond I see a maturity of two things really starting to come into their own – the Virtual PA and the drone.

Virtual PA’s will become more common place as our lives become more submerged in an information soup. There is an obvious need to filter, organise, liaise and schedule all this fast paced lifestyle, without actually doing it ourselves. Advertising will also become far more specialised with less blanket advertising on billboards etc and more directed towards you, through your Virtual PA.

This will start with mobile phone based Siri, Cortana etc. These will evolve slowly from voice activated passive helpers to becoming fully fledged annoying nagging virtual spouses. Holographic adaptable personal assistants are on the cards as I type this, go look up ‘Azuma Hikari’. Virtual PA’s will become more integrated with home appliances, finances, shopping, medical requirements and news delivery. They will make our lives easier, faster and paradoxically more complicated… wait until your V-PA clashes with a friends V-PA over wedding dates…

Drones will become more autonomous flyers. They will be outfitted with more specialised equipment. Drones will be given more rescue, military, fire fighting, beach lifesaving duties.

Finally these two technologies will merge into one thing, a floating ball, paired with contact lenses it will act as a camera, computer, laser scanner, security device and virtual PA, everyone will have them, clogging up pathways up to 9 metres high. The one up shot of this will be less staring down at a phone and much more interacting with shops, people and things. Basically a nation of people waving their arms in weird gestures and yelling at their Virtual PA drones… insisting on their right to bear tasers and laser guns.

You have been warned.