You will be assimilated

Jul 13
Mike Hatton

Mike Hatton

Technology changes rapidly now, but it was not always like this. For most of human history, generations would go by with no technological changes whatsoever. The world looked the same at the beginning of their lives as the end. Now technology is changing so rapidly that different decades can feel almost like different worlds.

I was watching a rerun of a Seinfeld episode this week and it struck me how no one on the show had cell phones. If they did have cell phones the plot of the show would have had to change. They would have just called some people and saved everyone a lot of grief. What was even stranger than the lack of cell phones was that someone had a pager. No one uses pagers anymore and it would not surprise me if my children did not even know what they are.

I read an article recently where a kid gave up his iPod for a Walkman. It took him three days to figure out that there was another side to the tape.

When my daughter was little, my parents were cleaning out their basement. They found an old popcorn maker. We wondered what to do with it. My daughter then said “I’d rather make popcorn the old fashioned way”. I asked “What’s the old fashioned way?” “With a Microwave” she replied. Clearly she saw a microwave oven in a different light than I did.

Most of the time we try to anticipate what new things will exist in the future, but the things that will be missing will have just as big an effect. Here is an interesting game to play: think of things that will no longer be around in twenty years. Newspapers that are actually on paper are almost guaranteed to be gone. I still believe books will be around but text books will not. Video Rental stores will be extinct. Television stations will probably not exist in any form that we recognize. Microsoft Windows is likely to be dead. Even if they have a completely new operating system, they would probably call it something besides Windows.

So, what about Bluetooth Technology? It would be easy to assume that some new Wireless technology would take its place in twenty years, but I am not so sure. If you want to stick around for a long time you need to adapt with the times and that is what Bluetooth Wireless Technology seems to be doing. One way that it is adapting reminds me of the Borg from Star Trek. It seems to assimilate everything it can. 802.11 can handle higher data rates than Bluetooth, so let’s assimilate it. UWB can handle even higher data rates, so let’s assimilate that too.

Turning a competing technology into a partner through assimilation; means that the strengths of your one time competitor are now your strengths. There is now a large community of experts for other technologies that are now working on Bluetooth Technology, maybe even unknowingly.

Whatever happens, we know that twenty years from now we will be using some form of wireless technology. The approach of assimilating other technologies will make it much more likely that the name “Bluetooth” will somehow be involved.

You know, now that I think about it, the Borg did look like they were wearing Bluetooth Headsets.

2 Responses to “You will be assimilated”

    Spider says:

    “That’s it for this article begin to read this blog. Plus a subscriber:).

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