Christie’s made two significant firsts earlier this year: It would accept cryptocurrency and offer for sale a digital work that is backed by a unique token (NFT).
Digital artist Beeple sold the work for more than $69million. It is part of a completely new way of monetization and could be the start of a new digital ecosystem.
An NFT, a digital asset that is blockchain-based, can link to real-world assets such as digital art or music or tokenized physical assets such as houses or cars. The NFT verifies ownership, provenance and access in the case of art. NFTs are immutable public blockchains that have a market value greater than $300 million as of last month.
NFTs are also included in the Gartner Hype Cycle 2021 for Emerging Technologies, which highlights 25 of the most important technologies that will impact society and business over the next two to ten years. Gartner Research Vice President Brian Burke says that breakthrough technologies keep appearing and are challenging even the most innovative companies to keep up. Your focus on digital business transformation requires you to accelerate change and cut through all the hype.
The three main themes of this year’s technology selections, which were chosen for their potential transformative benefits and wide potential impact, are:
- Engineering trust
- Accelerating growth
- Sculpting change
To be able to lead technology-enabled business change, IT teams must build a trusted business foundation. Trust is not only about security and reliability; it also requires working practices that can be replicated, tested, scaleable, and ingenious. These practices create a strong foundation that IT can use to bring business value.
Real-time incident command centres are a service that improves situational awareness by fusing information from different sources. A public safety organization typically has a manual method of integrating sensors, video, and databases into a communications system for an emergency command centre.
The as-a-service model simplifies the operation of a command centre. Initial interest was in creating next-generation real time centers to reduce crime. The use cases have evolved to include natural disasters and wildfire management as well as pandemic response.
This technology presents a major problem due to the need for interagency cooperation. All data, including databases, radio, IoT mass notifications, license plates readers, geolocation tracking, and radio, is usually owned by separate entities. However, the service of real-time incident command centres could help improve emergency response. Other technologies that fall under the engineering trust category include homomorphic encryption, sovereign cloud and data fabric.
As IT leaders and CIOs, it is important to focus on initiatives that will drive growth. This means that you must balance technology risk and business risk and ensure that the organization’s growth goals are achievable and near-term.
Digital humans are digital-twin representations or digital-twins of people. This technology opens up new revenue streams for licensed personas. These personas can be avatars, humanoid robotics, or conversational user interfaces such as chatbots and smart speakers. These AI-driven interactive representations appear human-like and can be supported by a variety of technologies, including CGI, 3D real-time automated animation, and conversational UI.
These humanoid technologies are used in customer service, HR training, communications and medical care. COVID-19 has demonstrated the technology’s potential to provide no-touch experiences, combat isolation and care for the elderly. The role of digital humans has been played in feature films, at conferences, and as brand ambassadors. Digital humans face many challenges due to social roadblocks, ethical concerns, and immature technology. However, the potential for business success and differentiation is driving some companies to embrace this technology.
Multi-experience, industry clouds and quantum ML are other emerging technologies that can be considered accelerating growth.
Change is inevitable. Recognize the disruption and use technology to help you manage it. To mitigate risk, you must be able to anticipate and influence changes. Physic-informed AI (PIAI), for example, is an AI that can create physically and scientifically sound AI models. PIAI is a more efficient way to model complex systems such as climate and environmental issues. These are difficult to model due their size.
Digital AI models are limited in their adaptability because they cannot generalize beyond what they have been trained with. PIAI provides a better representation of context and physical products. COVID-19 highlighted weaknesses in business models that are too fragile. PIAI allows developers to create more adaptable systems by providing a flexible representation of the environment and conditions under which they operate. It is also capable of creating more robust and adaptable business simulators that can be used in a wide range of situations. Composable applications and networks, as well as influence engineering are some other emerging technologies.