Disruptive technologies, by their very definition, are difficult to predict. We can however track the course of online consumer and developer trends today to make smart assumptions about the technology landscape in the years to come. Our CEO, Blake Irving, shared his unique perspective on how looking backward with a focused lens reshapes the way we all look (and design) forward. From machine learning and predictive analytics to mobile everywhere and client side architecture, Blake shared his point of view on the potential impacts of tech mashups at Parallels Summit 2014, the global gathering of more than 1,200 professionals in the hosting and cloud industries.
In human culture, we have always combined existing ideas to create completely new art forms. In music, for example, jazz was a mashup between African music and European music. Fast forward twenty years from the Jazz Age, and rock was the mashup between jazz, R&D and country. And the pattern continues.
Mashups are an incredibly powerful form of innovation. Everything from mashups that were too early or missed the mark (Microsoft Bob and Apple Newton) to current successes such as WhatsApp to Pandora are, at their core, mashups of pre-existing technologies that are being put together in a new way.
Music streaming services Spotify and Pandora are mashups. (At their core, these types of services are mashups between personal clouds and smartphone ubiquity and music.) Services such as NetFlix and Hulu and Amazon Prime Streaming are mashups between broadband ubiquity and new client architectures.
Machine learning plus Siri plus big data results in IBM Watson and wins Jeopardy.
Ultimately, Blake contends that the ability to leverage open standards and combine various capabilities into new services and solutions can help networks of businesses answer the “what should I do next?” question as well. He posits that mashing up cloud-based services with big data using capabilities like Hadoop can actually provide insights into “what’s working and what’s not” for small businesses, by providing incredibly valuable benchmarking data, enabling everyone from web designers and developers to a new corner bakery gain a view into the trends that can help them run their business more effectively.
So, take a watch of Blake’s presentation if you have a few minutes. Would love to know what you think!