Oh boy–nearly a PASN solution!!!

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I was looking at a PASN solution that gets really close (media mostly) the new Wi-Fi drive from Seagate. It includes a media application for iOS, Android and your PC/Macintosh that is again a part of what PASN would be.

From a high level view it is a step. But from a reality of perspectives it is not a large step its only a baby step. Still, a wonderful step and I am going to pick one up to play with it.

Looking beyond this initial step there is such a wealth of possible things including of course the Syncverse and Myverse solutions that could be someday.

As the concepts of personal area networks expand there are many things that will come to grow the PASN concept.

I am preparing essay 2, which will be focused more on what may be in the technology of tomorrow.

I love my job.

.doc

Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow

Clap on–Clap off The Surface…

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Twice the storage. Is that enough to buy a new iPad? With 64 gigabyte Micro S.D. cards available – I wonder. You can buy devices that your iPad can connect to and leverage that have more storage – I wonder if storage is enough. Sure there are other improvements, but you also end up with more adapters since most of my accessories are for the old 30 pin connector and to date, some of them still don’t work with the new lightening connector.

Which leads me to the cutting edge bargaining conversation. It is a conversation I have with myself from time to time. It has to do with he balance (cool new things) and the reality (what I need). That discussion tells me that if, there was a microsd slot on the iPad with 128 gig, it would go from a nice to have to a gotta have. But only increasing the memory without adding expansion, frankly the unit doesn’t do that much for me at that point.

For example right now – going back to my PASN discussion, I can buy a wi-fi HD that an Ipad can connect to that has more than 128 gigs of storage. So I could in effect push everything to that device and use my iPad as a media player. I like my ipod better for that functionality, but it is possible. So simply put more memory without expansion does me no good.

Which then got me thinking – what is the bar? For example for my work pc right now, any machine would be better than the one I have (its not the pc’s fault, it is just out of date). For my home pc? I actually have the Macintosh and the pc I want, so that is moot. You would have to create the ultimate device to get me to move. I watch the snap on, snap off clapper based Microsoft Surface commercials and I don’t even blink. Why buy a device that is hamstrung before you unbox it?

That is my new commercial suggestion by the way for Microsoft regarding their new computer. Clap on, Clap off – THE SURFACE.

.doc

Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow

The lost vision of …

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I need to pull together a new safegov blog – just can’t find the time right now. Security and the considerations of both cyber and physical security are interesting topics, just don’t have the time required to sit and create.

In a previous life I was a devotee of two different models for creating and managing a vision within a project. That envisioning process has evolved over time into something different but I think back to the envisioning workshops I taught for customer’s and internal groups and it makes me smile.

Vision is something you acquire through the life of a project. Certainly there are those who create grand initiation visions for projects that are just starting. Those “huge” earth moving visions like JFK’s vision that launched NASA into the stratosphere. We certainly strive towards those visions but they are as much dreams as visions.

Within a project a different vision is born. You have the reality of the project, the problems therein and what has to be done. For that vision you want a get things done leader. But the project as a whole needs someone leading it that can ascribe to something larger than the project, something grand and convey that message back to the team.

That’s that change that has happened to me. Visions aren’t set in stone, rather they are grown by the nurturing love of a project team. If the team doesn’t nurture the vision, in the end the project dies along with the vision.

My new philosophy of visions – grow your vision and your project will flourish. If you visions languishes, stop and water it. A lost vision becomes a lost project.

.doc

Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow

We set sail soon

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Columbus  left Spain with the intent of finding passage to India that was more expedient than the around the horn of Africa (risky) or the overland (risky and expensive) to open new economic markets for Spain.

He was seeking an economic boon for Spain which in the end he did discover. The gold of the new world while accidental more than made up for the lost spices of India.

What is the next great market?

The Internet exploded with the advent of online shopping. The Amazon concept wasn’t new (simply online Wal-Mart) but it expanded the market and created a huge economic whorl wind.

Telephony seemed to be the next great market that was just at the edge of exploding. But that market needs to shake out a little yet, like the concept of watching your video anywhere anytime, it needs more bandwidth to be effective.

Is bandwidth the next great market?

Sadly not in the near term. When you can have companies bid for the data you use, and provide it at a lower more cost effective rate, in the end that is the future of data and data consumption. But that market lies beyond the horizon. Too much money to be made in the wires for companies to let go of that.

Perhaps I should start a Kickstarter campaign (looking for the next big market) and build three ships to accompany me on that journey. I don’t think Spain will fund this one (they are struggling a bit right now).

We set sail soon – sign up and join the quest!

.doc

Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow

Blending the old and the new…

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I promise (because I got an email asking me to promise) not to pick on futurists for 1 week.

Yesterday we visited downtown Baltimore. Baltimore was a city that struggled with the concept of modernization for a long time. Their newest effort however, of renovating older buildings and adding newer buildings is really quite lovely.

Which got me thinking – a couple of years ago there was a headset offered (and its still around) they called the retro headset. It blended the old hand held phone connection that we all grew up with (although I still prefer speaker phones personally).

The blending of old and new is always a good idea. When I was in Portugal a few years ago, I watched them renovate a building. The building had a beautiful mosaic front (my wife does Mosaics so I was intrigued by the building’s façade). They (the new owners) wanted to preserve that legacy but frankly the rest of the building was toast (from floors to foundation). So they simply propped up the front of the building and gutted the rest. A blending of old and new for safety sake.

Living in the DC area you see a lot of that – older buildings built long before the modern needs that are adapted rather than torn down and rebuilt. It is an interesting thing to consider (well at least it was for me, yesterday).

.doc

Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow

Is that the future?

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Video conferencing…what once was a room is now a laptop and a webcam. What happened to all the people that made cool backdrops for television and video conferencing? Huge fabric or paper backdrops that obscured the TV studio or made the viewer fell like they were somewhere else.

(Now live from Davos Switzerland) says the newsperson while standing in the television studio wondering if the cost of the backdrop was less than the cost of the air ticket to really go to Davos.

Many years ago on my other blog I detailed that I felt the limitation of the Internet and eventually the work from home reality was home bandwidth. With the advent of so many options in video conferencing I am wondering now if there is a limit any more. I know that working from home I am far more effective than I am working in the office. In the office I get kind and considerate interruptions that I love, but they do derail both my process and my thinking. At home I don’t get those and now, with the video conferencing reality I can actually be more effective at home, and still participate in every aspect of an in person meeting (from white boarding to smiling at jokes it can all be seen now.

I have been poking at Futurists for the past week or so, wondering what they really were. The future is not the big city but the home office. The ability to grab fresh coffee, walk into your home office and be at work. That is going to change the way people work far more than anything to date. Sure, some jobs (manufacturing etc.) will continue to require in person attendance. But many many more jobs will not.

I guess my ask of futurists is a roadmap for young people starting college. What do they want to do with the rest of their lives. Sure, having in person meetings is a great social atmosphere that has to be continued, but do you want to work at home? It’s a brave new world and a change in both the worker and what work is.

Is that the future I see before me?

.doc

Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow

Emails about Futurism!

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Three great emails yesterday from friends on the concept of Futurist. The first email I got asked a question that I thought quite germane: if you have to work so hard to define something is it real? (paraphrase). I suspect as I replied to my friends email that in fact I was a lot sarcastic in my futurist posts because frankly I just don’t see a value to that role.

The second email talked about the different types of futurists breaking them into public and private sectors. In the email another topic was the direct linkage of futurists to economic reality. If it doesn’t make business sense then from a business perspective your not doing the futurists job.

Finally a friend sent me the following “I knew you were going to write about futurists” I have to say in I’M vernacular that one had me ROFL.

I love getting emails from smarter people thinking about what I am thinking about and expanding it. The item that I was most intrigued by yesterday was the linkage drawn by my emailer of the economic reality of futurism.

Your not a business or economic futurist if the solution doesn’t make business sense. IE private sector futurists need to focus on the money (Show me the money).

From a policy or public sector perspective the reality of futurism then points more towards benefits. Cost doesn’t always have to be bad. Sometimes cost well placed in the end can benefit many more people than not spending the money in a space. We spent billions of dollars on NASA but it drove the innovation of our country for many years – producing a multi-billion dollar a year tax revenue structure for the federal government.

Great emails – great thoughts. Thanks to all!!

.doc

Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow

Futurist, or is it really…

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I got a few great emails yesterday from a friend on the concept  of what is a futurist. In the end we were being creative and started coming up with the language of futurists while stealing a little from Jeff Foxworthy. (My apologies Mr. Foxworthy but your concept of You might be a redneck really fit this conversation).

You might be a futurists if…

  • You often say the word tomorrow.
  • When web sites need a picture of the home of tomorrow they come to your house and take the picture.
  • You are featured on the cover of Office of Tomorrow.
  • People don’t ask you how you are, they ask you how you will be

Sadly our list didn’t stop here but these were my favorites especially the last one (which wasn’t mine so kudo’s on that one go to my friend I can’t share his name because he says he is in the witness protection program. I think he just doesn’t want people to know he talks to me).

The interesting thing was the concept that futurists talk to people differently than everyone else does. That you can identify them simply by the special lapel pin they wear. They speak in future terms was what my friend called it.

So I started thinking about that after I shut my computer down for the evening (and the IU game was over). What are future terms. Is it building on what is there today and peaking just over the horizon to share a concept of what could be in a very short time period? It left me with some questions about futurists.

Would a futurist have a doorbell or would they just know you would be visiting?

I get that a futurist would wear a watch (the now isn’t the future) but do they need a calendar?

Sorry about that – the questions just rattle around inside my head all day if I don’t get them out.

.doc

Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow

New System Thinking…

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Futurist:

(Wikipedia)

The term "futurist" most commonly refers to authors, consultants, organizational leaders and others who engage in interdisciplinary and systems thinking to advise private and public organizations on such matters as diverse global trends, plausible scenarios, emerging market opportunities and risk management.

The Oxford English Dictionary identifies the earliest use of the term futurism in English as 1842, to refer, in a theological context, to the Christian eschatological tendency of that time. The next recorded use is the label adopted by the Italian and Russian futurists, the artistic, literary and political movements of the 1920s and 1930s which sought to reject the past and fervently embrace speed, technology and, often violent, change.

Futurist.

Systems thinking presents an interesting face to the world. If you follow the works that created the genre you think in inputs, processes and outputs. The inputs of today (mobile devices, cloud computing, tablets, laptops, servers, mainframes, the Internet) are mapped into a series of processes that result in an output (actionable screens).

I would like to propose a slightly modified systems thinking metaphor. Where the inputs are actually the human being, the processes are the machine and the broader output is something the person wished to create. This is an extension of existing systems thinking but one I believe will benefit the overall output significantly.

You can see this metaphor starting to take place with the number of 3d printers that are available on the market today. Imagine it, put it into a computer program and it is output on a 3d printers. Interestingly by the way, you first see these types of system outputs on CSI shows first.

If you include the human element of a system as an input of the system you change some things. For example the concept of hard to user becomes a barrier. It has always been a deterrent to solutions but with this broader system model we now have it as a direct barrier. If the process and the outputs are too complex the system fails.

I keep hearing Rod Serling’s Twilight Zone voice in my head. “Imagine if you will, a system bound to the inputs and delivering expected outputs. You’ve entered the new system thinking zone.”

more to come…

.doc

Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow

What is a futurist?

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I heard the title futurist yesterday. I’ve heard it before but I never really thought about what a futurist was or could be. Is it someone focused on a particular technology or all technologies and then what will happen next? Or is it someone more of a PR type apologist (that’s fixed in the next version).

Futurists like weather forecasters are more wrong than right. If you think about bold predictions of what tomorrow would bring the list of those correct dwindles rapidly. Some are right about many things (Wells) but you never hear about the rest. Predictions of what tomorrow may bring is a great business, if you write vaguely (like Nostradamus) your predictions will always come true.

But if you detail specifics you will fail. Why? Because the future changes even as we enter it. It is a shifting paradigm flowing mind bending different place than we are now. The window for the future is much smaller than we think. In 2009 I used a windows phone, I was limited by many things, not the least of which was that the upcoming platform would remove all of the applications I had purchased useless. That future came to pass with the release of Windows Phone 7. The same is true today with the future of the lightening connector and suddenly iPhone’s no longer talk to the many devices built for the 30 pin dock connector of older iPhones, iPod’s and iPads.

On the wings of right now the concept of the touch screen begins to gel. It seems a logical extension of what is, but is it? What does lie in the futurists mind now? A shifting pile of sand (as a friend says often, which grain makes it collapse?). What doth the future hold oh seer?

Upon the break of day

A new light will rise

from this light

all will see

and all will follow.

(my quatrain about the release of the new IPhone 7 iOS. Or is it? perhaps a large explosion that results in everyone having to live underground. Or maybe its about a religious coming as foretold in many religious text. Or possible its aliens landing in N.Y.C. All in all it’s the future so make it what you will).

A future by any other name is just a guess.

.doc

Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow