Steadfast robots replace hotel desk clerks and retail workers, autonomous cars and drones transport robots that deliver packages more efficiently, shopping sprees take place in virtual reality – these are just a few of the innovations Gartner, Inc. predicted during a webcast entitled, “The Gartner Top 10 Strategic Technology Trends for 2017.”
Intelligent tech adapts to people
In a fascinating presentation that encouraged companies to experiment with scenarios for these and other technologies based on targeted business value, David Cearley, Vice President and Gartner Fellow, explained how intelligence anywhere and everywhere actually puts people in charge.
“It’s not about just internet of things, wearables, mobile devices, or PCs. It’s about all of that together,” said Cearley. “We need to…put the person at the center. Ask yourself what devices and service capabilities do they have available to them at work, in their car, with customers. Then look at how you can deliver capabilities across multiple devices to deliver value. We want systems that shift from people adapting to technology to having technology and applications adapt to people. Instead of using forms or screens, I tell the chat bot what I want to do. It’s up to the intelligence built into that system to figure out how to execute that.”
Noting that everything has the potential to be intelligent, Cearley said every vendor is developing this kind of software and services. He mentioned SAP’s invoice matching and CV matching solutions as examples of machine learning in intelligent applications.
These are the top 10 strategic trends Gartner sees breaking out of the emerging space to have a potentially substantial impact over consumers and industries during the next five years.
- Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Advanced Machine Learning, including deep learning, neural networks, and natural-language processing, will move beyond traditional rule-based algorithms to create systems that understand, learn, predict, adapt and potentially operate autonomously. This is what makes smart machines appear “intelligent.”
- Intelligent Apps like VPAs (virtual personal assistants) and VCAs (virtual customer assistants) have the potential to transform the nature of work, as well as sales and customer service, performing some of the functions of people, making everyday tasks easier and more efficient.
- Intelligent Things like drones, autonomous vehicles, and smart appliances shift from stand-alone programming to a collaborative intelligent things model, exploiting applied AI and machine learning to deliver advanced behaviors and more natural interaction with their surroundings and people.
- Virtual and Augmented Reality dramatically transform how people interact with each another and software systems. Get ready for hyper-personalization from relevant apps and services across multiple mobile, wearables, internet of things and sensor-rich environments that extend immersive applications beyond isolated and single-person experiences.
- Digital Twins, dynamic software models of a physical thing or system using sensor data to proactively improve operations and add value will represent hundreds of millions of things within three to five years.
- Blockchain and Distributed Ledgers are gaining traction because they hold the promise to transform industry operating models by adding trust in an untrusted environment. While the current hype is around the financial services industry, there are many possible applications including music distribution, identity verification, title registry and supply chain.
- Conversational Systems (think: chat bots and microphone-enabled devices) move beyond traditional desktop computers and multiple devices to encompass the full range of endpoints with which humans might interact. Gartner refers to “mesh,” meaning the dynamic connection of people, processes, things and services supporting intelligent digital ecosystems. As the device mesh evolves, connection models will expand and greater cooperative interaction between devices will emerge, creating the foundation for a new continuous and ambient digital experience.
- Mesh App and Service Architecture (MASA) enables people using apps to have an optimized solution for targeted endpoints in the digital mesh (e.g., desktop, smartphone, automobile) as well as a continuous experience as they shift across these different channels.
- Digital Technology Platforms provide the basic building blocks to enable digital business. Every organization will have some mix of five digital technology platforms: information systems, customer experience, analytics and intelligence, IoT, and business ecosystems.
- Adaptive Security Architecture: The intelligent digital mesh and related digital technology platforms and application architectures create an ever-more-complex world for security. Beyond just keeping people from breaking in, security is adaptive and embedded into system design.
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