Gartner Emerging Trends 2009

I was at the Gartner Symposium & ITXpo last week and thought I’d briefly report what Gartner believes are the most important emerging technology trends for the next 5-10 years. 

Some of the topics are linked to articles on the topic that I found interesting. Here they are, as presented by Nick Jones:

1. Social Platforms in the Enterprise: From “Life Stream” to “Work Stream”

2. User Interface: The Environment is the Computer. Touch, gesture, display types (3D, flex, projected, ambient)

3. Real World Web: Unifying the Digital and Physical Worlds. Sensor networks, object id, location id & geo-tagging

4. Augmented Reality. Wearable or ‘glanceable’ interface, context-based info at ‘point of decision’.

5. Mobile Robots. Humanoid companions & workers, carrying, lifting, rescue, vacuuming, clearning, mowing, delivering.

Nick Jones: “Robots will only be successful if we’re not afraid of them. Best way to overcome this is to deliver relatively dumb robots to consumers and then the owner can train the robot as you would an ‘apprentice’ to perform certain tasks.”

6. 3D Printing – industrial prototyping, product design, 3D faxing, 3D printing bureaus, hobbyist modeling, and also home printing of replacement parts.Imagine printing plastic/metal spares at home! 

Or imagine printing plastic toys at home! And speaking of plastic toys:

Nick Jones: “Imagine the fun the adult content industry would have with 3D printing? Now combine it with chocolate printing”

7. Human Augmentation – Today: restoring normal performance. Tomorrow: Achieving above-normal performance.

See video below:

Bionic ArmFree videos are just a click away

I found Gartner’s predictions from last year (for the years 2008-2012): 

Personally, I’m most excited about Robotics and 3D home printing. Perhaps I can even ‘print’ all the parts I need to build my own Robot!