The strategic technology trends of 2016

Strategic technology trends are the prime enablers behind new digital business opportunities and can have a significant impact on business, individuals, and IT organisations. These trends can be extremely beneficial, but with technology rapidly progressing it can be hard to know exactly what the latest trends are.

This infographic by Lucas Blake is based on Gartner research, which examines the strategic technology trends of 2016. So what are they and how can you benefit from them? Here's some of the top trends:

The device mesh

The device mesh is the ever-proliferating variety of sensors in our devices that furiously collects data all the time. An expanding set of endpoints, used to access information and applications and is used to interact with people, social communities, governments and business. The mesh includes all the different devices you may be using on your network, such as mobile phones, consumer and home electronics, automotive devices, and environmental devices. It is what creates the foundation for a new continuous and ambient user experience.

Ambient user experience

The ambient user experience preserves continuity across boundaries of the device mesh, time, and space. This user experience is one that flows perfectly across different sets of devices and interaction channels that blend physical, virtual, and electronic environments as the user moves from one space to another.

The best way to understand this concept is by looking at the word ‘ambient’. Its definition relates ‘to the immediate surrounding of something’, in which this 'something' blends harmoniously into the surrounding environment, becoming a part of the environment without demanding direct attention.

Everything in the digital mesh produces, uses, and transmits an immeasurable amount of information. Therefore it is important for businesses to learn how to identify what information provides strategic value, how to access data from different sources, and explore how algorithms leverage Information of Everything.

This information goes beyond textual, audio, and video information to include sensory and contextual information. Using semantic tools and other emerging techniques will enable us to bring valid meaning to the often chaotic deluge of information which may be isolated, incomplete, unavailable, or unintelligible.

Advanced system architecture

High demand computing requires neuromorphic architectures which work like a brain. Basically, the digital mesh and smart machines require intense computing architecture demands to make them viable for organisations.

Providing this required boost are high-powered and ultra-efficient neuromorphic architectures. An underlying technology to these neuromorphic architectures is field-programmable gate arrays, which help to increase the speed of this architecture. These field-programme gate arrays allow further distribution of algorithms in smaller forms, which use a considerably less amount of electrical power in the device mesh.

Internet of Things platforms

The Internet of Things platforms work behind the scenes to make the Internet of Things and the digital mesh possible. An Internet of Things platform not only complements, but also exists behind the mesh app and service architecture. The technologies and standards of this platform form a base of capabilities for communicating, controlling, managing, and securing endpoints in the Internet of things.

These platforms aggregate data from endpoints behind the scenes to make the Internet of Things a reality and an integral part of the digital mesh and ambient user experience. Ultimately, the emerging and dynamic world of the Internet of Things platforms is what makes these possible.

Kat Kynes, Head of Content at FireCask