This fascinating, forward-looking webinar is unlike most webinars you’ve seen before – now available on demand in the Unified Learning Academy. Global futurist and COO of Fast Future Publishing, Steve Wells joins the CEO of iCohere, Lance Simon along with Dr. Amanda Batson, founder of ADB Partners, and Rori Forensic, with National Automatic Merchandising Association (NAMA).
In the first part of this special 90-minute interactive event, Wells discusses the major forces shaping the future, the “possibility explosion” in science and technology, and the potential implications of exponential change on the working world.
Wells starts by stressing that he will not be making predictions, only suggesting possible scenarios and possible outcomes and what it means for your organization. He continues with the question “What do we need to handle the transition from where we are now to what lies ahead in the future?”
What are the major forces changing the shape of the future? Wells explains that things have always changed. It’s not the change, but the rapid rate of change that is causing uncertainty.
We strive to have sustainability with our environment and our impact on it, and how we generate energy. We want to have affordable healthcare, quality education, ending poverty and starvation, and sustainable jobs and infrastructure. All of these factors impact how we run our businesses.
The Canadians seemed to have mastered a sophisticated method of looking at top corporations around the world and measuring their sustainability. Organizations use sustainability in several different ways across different sectors. Some of the higher ranking sustainable companies utilizing are industrial companies, oil companies, and software companies.
Two Worlds Colliding: In the past, technology is what dominated the business world. Now, businesses are digital or data-driven. The new mindset is to focus on data instead of products and services. Uber and Air B&B are examples of companies that use data to gain an edge.
Wells talks about the ‘Possibility Explosion from Extensional Science and Technology Developments’. After the first three industrial revolutions (steam engines, electricity, desktop computers), we are heading to the fourth. Each revolution had a significant impact on employment and how businesses develop. Also, each one was isolated in time from the others.
What is happening now is many technologies blossoming concurrently: 3D and 4D printing, AI, brain uploading, nanotechnology, energy, and robotics, just to name a few. Think about how just the smartphone itself has changed the lives of so many. However, it will be the potential combinations of these technologies that will prove most powerful.
Artificial intelligence (AI) already has many uses, and its capabilities and application domains are proliferating. It’s being used in so many different industries and sectors, and it’s already dominating parts of our lives. In Japan, some insurance companies are abandoning adjusters in favor of AI. In France, programmers are designing AI that will eventually program itself. All of this impacts jobs.
Most production lines are using some sort of robots now. After invading the blue-collar job sector, AI is now attacking the white-collar sector. No one knows how far AI will reach. One concept has robots owning, repairing, and even insuring themselves. What will happen to the job markets that currently handle these issues?
It is looking like smart cities are evolving. Imagine a digital blanket of sensors, devices, and cloud-connected data, and how it will not only impact our jobs but also how we work.
An example is an American company called Local Motors that is challenging markets, manufacturing, supply chains, and logistics. They make a car that is 3D printed and uses only uses 50 components as opposed to the 5000 components in a normal car. Each vehicle can be made considerably faster, the plants are smaller and local, fewer cars need to be produced to see a profit, and supply chains and logistics are altered. Because the plants are regional instead of global, local suppliers would handle their needs.
Wells then floats the idea of human enhancement with possible life extension, bioengineering, genetic modification, and 3D printing of limbs. We might soon live in a world that possibly will be filled with robots, androids, and holograms. What will happen if or when half of our jobs are displaced by robots?
There are already many AI applications in existence like real-time translation, smart machines, and sensors, and most firms are already using some kind of AI. There is a theory that one day, AI could become self-aware. Maybe it could even adopt emotional intelligence.
With 30 minutes left in the webinar, Lance Simon conducts a poll to see which drivers will have the most impact on the future of your organization. He is then joined by Rori Forensic, who gives a detailed overview of NAMA and discusses many of the vending technologies available today that weren’t around a decade or two ago.
The rest of the webinar has Wells, Simon, Forensic, and Batson in a panel discussing and answering these important questions:
- What is the role of associations in curating and creating trusted data?
- How can smaller companies and individuals reinvent themselves during all the ongoing exponential change if they are ‘resource poor’?
- How and where do the organizations move forward in that 4-10-year strategic direction?
- What does this look like for the government?
Watch Future Reinvented, now available on-demand in the Unified Learning Academy.Register & Watch Now!