Aug 18 2014

ILTA 2014: Exponential Technologies that Will Impact Your Business

Sensors, robots and artificial intelligence are among the tech that X PRIZE Foundation CEO Peter Diamandis expects to transform every industry.

If you feel like the world is moving a lot faster, you’re not alone.

Computers are getting faster, people can do more on their mobile devices, customer expectations are growing and your workload is likely increasing as well. Cloud computing, sensors and other exponential technologies are exploding onto the scene and transforming our world, according to Peter Diamandis, chairman and CEO of the X PRIZE Foundation.

Diamandis, who is known for launching large incentive prizes to benefit humanity, kicked off the International Legal Technology Association’s 37th annual educational conference Monday in Nashville, Tenn. His keynote focused on the power of disruptive technologies and how they’re changing the way we work, communicate and live.

“You have to understand what is going on here because all of these technologies are converging to transform every single industry on this planet — this decade,” Diamandis told ILTA attendees.

Consider IBM’s Watson. The supercomputer can download vast amounts of information and search its knowledge base to find relevant answers, Diamandis explained. IBM put Watson capabilities in the cloud where companies now can “incorporate the power of Watson into their own apps,” Forbes reported. Imagine what law firms could do with access to Watson-like capabilities for e-discovery.

The 6 D’s of Exponential Technologies

Diamandis often uses what he calls the six D’s to explain to CEOs and students the life cycle of exponential technologies.

Digitized: “The first realization is that anything that becomes digitized enters a period of exponential growth — manufacturing, biology, medicine, data, photographs, all of these things,” noted the X PRIZE Foundation CEO.

Follow all of BizTech's coverage from the show by visiting our ILTA 2014 content hub.Deceptive: “The early days of exponential growth are deceptively slow,” he added. While 3D printing is a 35-year-old technology, it is just now entering a disruptive phase. Everything from aircraft parts to a penguin’s beak has been manufactured using a 3D printer.

Disruptive: When technologies transition into a disruptive phase, they cause dematerialization, demonetization, and democratization.

Dematerialization: Exponential technologies are transforming physical products and services into virtual ones. For example, server farms are dematerializing into the cloud, Diamandis noted. We don’t have to buy radios, flashlights and GPS devices because these capabilities are available via apps, and the cost of these capabilities are decreasing.

Demonetization: See above.

Democratization: When technologies are digital-based and free, they can go everywhere and impact more lives.

“The question is, are you ready for that?” Diamandis asked. “These are the things I want you to imagine.”

To get more news on what's happening at ILTA, follow all of BizTech's coverage from the show by visiting our ILTA 2014 content hub.

Nicole Blake Johnson

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