Every once and a while – I am lobbed the classic emerging trend question.
The one that asks you to peer into your crystal ball and reach for something a little extraordinary that isn’t on someone’s radar. Something grounded with a hint of evidence but not yet here in the marketplace. Something useful. Patterns not yet present.
“What emerging trends or technologies have you seeing?”
and when I answer – sometimes I get nods. Sometimes I get the ‘you’re a few bricks short of a load’ look.
Here is what I answered with recently..
Typically, I start these conversations by taking off a shoe and detaching the high heel – thereby demonstrating the sheer engineering genius of my dearest friend Tanya Heath and the most innovative wearable invention to hit the shoe industry in a thousand years. Tanya designed a shoe with detachable heels so women can move from short to high heel. I extremely proud to see her shoes in Paris, Australia and Portugal as well as a brand new Yorkville location.
The rise of artificial intelligence and self learning virtual agents an obvious development. (something I’m currently dabbling with – with the amazing @alexglinka – who talks about probabilistic to predictive analytics with Strategy Mag ) i Have you noticed the maturing of SIRI yet? I rely on SIRI to call people – often asking her to call “mom and dad”. About 4 weeks ago, SIRI asked me “Is this your mother?” – and for first time, SIRI collected specific data on me. Of course, SIRI has a long way to go. She stills asks me which number to call when I only ever use one of the two numbers I have for my mother. Still – the future is in learning about me – who I call mother, when I call, what I ask for – both implicit and explicit data is coming. Over time – connected with my cell number – a system will learn a lot about me. Its all rather minority report ish.
I also am fascinated with the rise of chat – particularly with LINE and its brand extensions. Here is a massive Korean messaging / search company with no need for an IPO. It has released LINE PLAY- with ability to create an avatar that looks like you and play games with friends *and* LINE PAY – the chat that lets you pay for things.. including a cool ‘dutch pay’ function so you and friends can go dutch. It already has 1.2 Million subscribers!
But what fascinates me is also the emergence of emoticon based languaging – a language with no words. Could we be moving to a cross cultural language? One that transcends lingual differences? Yet — our North American emoticons are so different from those in Asia. Ever wonder why? Great 2007 article on this..
Also fascinating is the re-introduction of avatars – the ability to design your virtual self. I speculate that second life was six years too soon. This interest led me to @RamonaPringle ‘s Avatar Secrets – an interactive documentary for the ipad and a very multi-dimensional take on storytelling.
At which point.. I got a bit of blank stare..