The Arrival of Ubiquitous Computing

Among other things, one of the “ah ha” moments taken from this year’s CES (the world’s largest consumer technology tradeshow) was the arrival of ubiquitous computing. Formerly a purely academic concept, the data, voice, device and display convergence is now more relevant than ever. Ubiquitous convergence in consumer technology on enterprise software is poised to impact those highly involved in the field of cloud computing as well as the average consumer in the near future.

Industry prognosticators are now predicting that consumers will begin to expect the ubiquitous experience in practically everything they use on a daily basis, from their car to small household items. Take those that grew up in the digital world and will soon be entering the workforce; they will expect instant gratification when it comes to work and play and everything in between. For example, Apple made the Smartphone popular and a “must-have” item for non-enterprise consumers with its iPhone. The consumer-driven mobile phone revolution will likely seep into other areas as well, with consumers increasingly starting to expect to have a similar experience as with an iPhone in software. Due to this trend, many enterprise software vendors are now making mobile a greater priority than before, and in turn staying ahead of the curve will mean anticipating more and more ubiquitous convergence.

What Does Ubiquitous Computing Mean for ISVs?

CES showcased a wide range of new interface and display technology, such as a multi-touch screen by 3M, a screen with haptic feedback, pico projector and the list goes on. A cheap projector and a camera can combine to make virtually any surface into an interface or display, which will allow consumers to interact with software in innovative, unimaginable and unanticipated ways, thus putting ISVs to the task of supporting these new interfaces and displays. This gives ISVs the opportunity to differentiate their offering by leveraging rather than submitting to this new trend in technology.

The Combination of Location-based Apps and Geotagging

Both Google’s Favorite Places and Nokia’s Point and Find seek to organize and essentially own the information about places and objects using QR codes. The QR codes are generally easy to generate and have flexible and extensible structure to hold useful information, while the QR code readers are the devices—such as a camera phone with a working data connection—that most of us own already. When geotagging is combined with augmented reality that is already propelling the innovation in location-based apps, there is the potential for ample innovation. Smarter supply chain, sustainable product life cycle management and efficient manufacturing are all possible outcomes from the combination of location-based applications and geotagging.

The Evolution of 3D

While 3D simply adds a certain “cool” factor to playing video games or watching movies, 3D is poised to make the transition from merely a novelty into something useful. Although simply replicating 3D analog in the digital world won’t make software better, adding a third dimension could aid those looking at 2D. One way that 3D technology can be more effective is by using it in conjunction with complementing technology like multi-touch interface, to provide 3D accordances, and with location-based and mapping technology to manage objects in 3D analog world.

Rendering Technology to Outpace Non-Graphics Computation Technology

As shown by Toshiba’s TV with cell processors and ATI and nVidia’s graphic cards, the investment into rendering hardware complements the innovation in display elements (like LED, energy-efficient technology, etc). Hi-quality graphics at all former factors are being delivered via the combination of faster processors and sophisticated software. So far, enterprise software ISVs have been focusing on algorithmic computation of large volumes of data to design various solutions, and rendering computation technology lagged non-graphics data computation technology. Now rendering computation has caught up with non-graphics data and will outpace non-graphics data computation in the near future. This will allow for the creation of software that can crunch large volumes of data and leverage high-quality graphics without any lag, that delivers striking user experiences as well as realtime analytics and analysis.  For more information, please visit www.nubifer.com.

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