As innovation and entrepreneurship continue to contribute to competitiveness and wealth creation, you may be wondering what some of the leading technologies that are getting lots of attention and helping to pave the way forward are. Such insight can be helpful for companies planning to start a digital transformation, and entrepreneurs looking for technologies to leverage and move their idea to innovation. Consider a holistic approach to achieve an end goal when evaluating these technologies. Also, keep in mind that an effective integrated approach depends on having a clear vision and the right talent to achieve it. Investment in people and their professional development, along with suitable technology, is essential for success.
With the deployment of billions of sensors and objects (“things”) connected through the internet, the Internet of Things (IoT) technology is enabling the proliferation, collection, and exchange of big data in real-time. Some of these objects include mobile phones, security cameras, drones, cars, industrial machines, home appliances, and many others. Collected unstructured data from these devices can be stored in data lake repositories for further organization and analysis. Nearly all industries are affected by IoT, and IT applications are nearly endless. It’s worth noting that IoT plays a central role in monitoring the environment, enabling the rise of smart cities, contributing to sustainability, and helping to achieve a net-zero world.
The influx of massive amounts of data, combined with the need for faster computing, has created a need for growth in computing methodologies such as quantum, edge, fog, and cloud.
Quantum computing, which is based on probability calculations of a quantum state of an object, is faster than traditional 0/1 based computing. In particular, quantum computing is useful when dealing with complexities found in cyber security algorithms, molecular interactions, DNA, and other large multi-variate systems.
Edge computing deals with processing at or near the data source to reduce latency. For example, an autonomous vehicle would not do well with an extensive delay between the time data is collected from its array of sensors and when a decision is made to stop or change direction.
Fog and cloud computing are related based on the proximity of the computing environment (“cloud”) to the devices (“ground”).
Big data has created a need for analytics and visualization to help extract information from data that can improve decision-making and facilitate knowledge creation. To automate this process and speed up the analysis, AI has come to the rescue with deep learning and machine learning. AI’s far reach is impacting many industries such as automated manufacturing with AI-driven robotics, customer service and engagement, entertainment preferences with recommender systems, and “robot” stock selection and trading, to name a few.
For companies to prepare and be able to react to what’s next in the market with an option to scale, cloud-native system architecture offers promise. Central to its implementation are containers and Kubernetes. Such architecture supports the rapid delivery of products and services that rely on the DevOps culture and practices.
Blockchain technology has enabled the tracking of transactions among the participants with a level of security provided by its decentralized architecture. The applications range from cryptocurrencies, logistics, legal contracts, and more. Building on the decentralization theme, the architecture of Web 3.0 promises to give users more control of their data.
No discussion on system architecture would be complete without consideration given to cybersecurity, especially when IoT devices and APIs are involved. With the global rise of cyber threats, a new system design that starts with security in mind is critical.
Social networks and 3D virtual reality worlds have given rise to the metaverse that allows participants to socialize in a profoundly immersive digital space. The promise of this “new digital world,” based on augmented reality technology, has spurred the creation of digital real estate and companies flogging to buy their lots.
There you have it! A brief snapshot of technologies and trends to help you get started on an innovative digital transformation journey. It’s not for the faint of heart, but it is simpler than attempting to compute the full expansion of π. By considering a comprehensive approach from data to an immersive user experience, and securely integrating the various technologies to meet business objectives, IT leaders can add value to their organization and engage their teams in work that relies on the latest tech. For entrepreneurs, there are many areas to mine ideas and apply technologies to turn them into innovations. There is no better time to start than now!
About the Author
Dr. Predrag Pešikan an electrical engineer and business professional with management and leadership experience in both public and private higher education sector. He has served in executive roles as CIO, VP-IT, and Dean, and recently led the development of industry relevant programs including AI, Cybersecurity, and IoT. His research interest is in IT, leadership, and profitability of tech startups.
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