Wednesday, August 25, 2010
Timeline: 5 years
Google has been one of my favorite companies for a long time, but lately they seem to be losing their edge.
Google Apps started out as an amazing new business platform, hosted "in the cloud" with many features that couldn't be done with traditional office applications (ie. Microsoft Office).
Lately, however, the Apps team(s) seem to be trying to copy Microsoft's features one by one.
They're trying to duplicate VBScript (Apps Script) and Visual Basic (GWT). They're trying to match Office feature by feature.
This is the same path that Microsoft used with WordPerfect and Lotus 1-2-3. It did eventually lead to their dominance (because they owned the operating system) but Word and Excel aren't really much more innovative than their ancestors.
I don't think this is a great strategy, because the web/browser environment lends itself to something that could be much better and much more powerful.
I'm guessing they have long lists of companies that claim they will switch "as soon as they have features A, B, and C" but they might be missing the point.
To avoid this fate, they really need to clean house, and refocus on a large scale.
Otherwise, we will have to wait for "Company X" to emerge and start challenging the new "corporatized" Google...
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Timeline: 25 years
I'm not sure why, but I think both of these technologies will fail to deliver to the degree of their hype. At least not in the next quarter century.
No doubt that they've already produced some interesting advancements, but I think future developments in these fields will be slow and fairly boring.
These fields in 2010 remind me of space technology of the 1960s.
Sure, we got some pretty neat stuff out of the race to the space, but certainly no flying cars, or subdivisions on the moon.
I don't think either of these technologies will produce the miracles that some suggest.
Hopefully some eager scientists will prove me wrong!
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
Timeline: 5 years
Apple products are beautifully designed, with highly functional user interfaces.
But I'm not sure they really deserve the amount of attention they get.
It seems to me that the marketing has a lot more to do with their popularity than the products themselves.
Sure, every gadget Apple releases these days is a "must have" from day 1, but will they stand the test of time?
I've used iPods, iPhones and even an iPad here and there. I thought they were nice to use, but wasn't really "blown away" by them.
I suspect in 5 years there will be other companies with shiny new fad products capturing people's attention and money.
Apple's stuff will be old, clunky, and gathering dust in a drawer somewhere.
Wednesday, August 4, 2010
Timeline: Now for the next decade
This is already a massive problem, and there are lots of campaigns to reduce obesity, but the problem just keeps getting worse.
If you don't believe me, just have a look at this scary data from "ground zero" of the epidemic, the United States: http://www.cdc.gov/obesity/data/trends.html
Here are some predictions from better-educated sources than myself: http://www.heartforum.org.uk/Publications_NHFreports_ObesityTrends.aspx
Notice that the correlation between extra weight and many diseases has been established for decades now.
Obesity is spreading around the world like a plague.
No wonder. With cheap, fatty, salty, sugary food being shoved in our faces from all angles, it is getting more and more difficult to eat properly.
The only way to stop this trend is to change the economics. Instead of promoting junk food, we need to make healthy food cheaper, and unhealthy food more expensive.