By DaveLevy on May 15, 2006
We were introduced to John Ames, one of BT's Futurologists who took us on a little journey from Constable's horse & cart stuck in the mud (here... @Wikipedia), through the canels to the railways, arguing that innovation disrupts by destroying business models. He talked about real internet pervasivness (, we're talking intelligent paint here) and then showed us a bunch of RFID based applications, including printed paper.
He then moved from the RFID applications which allow computers to know where something is, to Bio-feedback systems. He demonstrated a game in which the two players wear finger gloves which measures how relaxed they are, and their relaxation drives two animated dragons in race (on a screen). If the players get really relaxed, the dragons fly. They're both technologies that lower the barriers between the real and virtual worlds. What interested me in the speech, was the breadth of vision offered, as he suggested that the nature of work will change as machines begin to be able to undertake "Professional" work. The previous presentation and demo had raised the question as to which Sci-Fi sources they were using, but it reminded me of Neuromancer, Minority Report and the Matrix.
John also quoted "Clayton Christiansen", the author of "The Innovator's Dilemma", first pointed out to me by Kieron Bradley, so I'm going to have to read it now! I've checked him out on Amazon and put it on my wish list.