BLDG-25 regularly works on projects that are on the cutting edge of emerging tech. This means our team is regularly staying abreast of the trends and learning new and innovative ways to solve our client’s problems. Here’s what we see coming up in 2020 as the technology field continues to change and improve.
David Nason, CTO
AIaaS (AI-as-a-Service) allows AI technology advances to scale to narrower and more specialized markets. Plenty of developers are looking at how they can use AI to change their users’ experience. But build-your-own-AI is expensive and expertise-intensive. AIaaS will provide mechanisms to simply feed in data and pay for the algorithms/cloud as needed. Even so, current AIaaS solutions are very generalized and require custom development to narrow them to specialized usage. 2020 will bring wider adoption and more developers who will offer more tailored applications and services for specific/specialized tasks.
Blockchain provides an encrypted and decentralized “digital ledger” to record secure transactions. Despite current scaling concerns, 2020 is going to see further adoption/expansion of its use in different markets (outside cryptocurrency).
5G is going to expand in 2020 with affordable data plans and improved coverage. The new “great equalizer”. Very fast data networks will not only allow people to stream movies and music at higher quality, but the increased speeds will mean that mobile networks will become even faster than currently used wired networks. Home and business networks will take advantage of fast and stable internet access anywhere. And the increased bandwidth will enable machines, robots, and autonomous vehicles to collect and transfer more data, faster and more efficiently, leading to advances in IoT technology and usage.
Autonomous Driving is taking advantage of several other advancing technologies: scenario recognition, automated braking, and lane-changing, as well as security and entertainment systems. I remember when I did the first automated cruise/steering/braking work with Ford and Daimler, the most interested (willing to spend now) were big truck lines. Trucking and shipping are becoming more autonomous, and breakthroughs in this space are likely to continue to hit the headlines throughout 2020. Especially as 5G expands.
Bioinformatics technology is transforming healthcare at a tremendous rate. The ability to capture data from wearable devices such as Fitbit provides the ability to increasingly predict and treat health issues in people even before they experience symptoms. Similarly, treatment will see “precision medicine” approaches, which allow doctors to more precisely prescribe medicines and apply treatments, thanks to data-driven understanding of their effectiveness on the specific patient. 2020 will bring new applications of predictive medicine in healthcare.
AR/VR/+ is really thinking about a term that covers several new and emerging technologies that create more immersive experiences. Augmented/Virtual Reality technologies have been around for a while in the world of entertainment, but Mixed Reality, in which users can interact with digital objects placed in the real world via an AR device, is a growing extension of AR. The wealth of possibilities offered by these technologies will make them become increasingly prevalent in training and simulation, and throughout 2020 will be offering new ways to interact with customers.
Kevin Tamlyn, Development Director
Blockchain in combination with privacy protection is going to be very important, regardless of what the ledger is tracking.
VR is not particularly compelling in its current implementation/form, even though it’s heavily trending. For example, we all have phones that can support VR with just a little bit of an investment, but a vanishingly small number of people care about this and even fewer are affected by the technology in their daily lives. It’s hard to see the potential impact on daily life – it is very low as far as I understand. VR is not significant in 2020 broadly imo, even though there may be some money in it.
AR seems to have more potential superficially, but again in 2020 perhaps less than in the future. It will more naturally creep into our lives in the form of always-worn glasses better than VR. But will it be necessary to “put on your glasses” to do business anytime soon? That’s hard to see.
Predictions on HOW autonomous driving vehicles will impact daily lives is an area ripe for exploration. There must be room to make money here as our daily lives change from autonomous driving vehicles.
In my opinion, the topic “AI” is much more broad than the other examples cited. It’s like saying that food production will be important in the future, but I like David’s comments. Interesting ways to apply AI is the conversation, with each application having the same potential of impact on our lives as anything else mentioned here such as autonomous driving.
Bob Pfister, Principal Developer
I project that the technologies others have listed – VR, AI, blockchain – will continue to make the news in 2020, but that they will be adopted at a slower than expected pace. This is not because there is anything wrong with these technologies, or because they will not eventually be adopted, but because adoption takes time.
I project that legacy technologies will continue to be a significant business problem for business and IT leaders. No matter how carefully technology is managed, or how carefully new technologies are selected, legacy technologies are a fact of life. Pick the best technology, build something with it, and in a year you have a legacy system.
I project that migration away from legacy technologies and connecting existing – i.e., legacy – applications will be a problem in 2020 and into the future. So the primary technology I would add to the list is Enterprise Application Integration. I like Boomi for this. It is an excellent product, and is well established, having been under development since 2001. Also, Michael Dell has taken a personal interest, and he is putting tremendous emphasis on Boomi, and tremendous resources into it. It will see continued rapid growth in 2020.