When it comes to technology, it really doesn’t take long for me to be out of date with the jargon people start to use. I remember starting my first day at an IT software company a few years ago as a Technical Author. When one of the software testers started to use some newly formed bits of 2014 jargon, he was horrified when I had no idea what he was talking about. I like to think I was forgiven. Truth is, there are buzzwords that actually convey an idea, a concept or a valid technology, but there are also those that confuse, distort and empower those who don’t want you to know what they’re talking about…like this tester I think! The word was ‘Hyperconvergence’ by the way. So, looking at 2020, what are some of the buzzwords people are using and what are their true definitions? Let’s have a look:
Artificial Intelligence (AI)
Software or machines that behave like humans being able to make certain decisions and capable of learning from experience. Examples range from voice-powered personal assistants like Siri and Alexa, to more underlying and intrinsic technologies such as behavioural algorithms, suggestive searches and self-driving vehicles with powerful predictive capabilities.
Exciting times lie ahead for AI as the research firm Markets and Markets has predicted that the AI market will grow from $16.06 billion in 2017 to $190.61 billion by 2025. Undeniably one term that will be on the tips of our tongues, especially when there may be the possibility of helping us with our strategic business decisions.
Internet of Things (IoT)
This has become extremely popular as it is most influential, and I believe it will keep on growing. Internet of Things (IoT) refers to everyday objects being able to connect to the internet and to each other. Whole cities could become ‘smart cities’ – everything connected, from your car and refrigerator down to your dog’s collar.
It’s an ever-expanding ecosystem and definitely the buzzword to remember.
Voice-as-User Interface (VUI)
So, all I need to say is “Alexa” or “Siri” to know what we’re talking about here. These voice technologies will no doubt continue to evolve along with Google Assistant. They are now commonplace in households and businesses across the globe and it’s predicted that 50% of all searches will be via voice by the end of 2020.
VUIs are equipped with AI systems and machine learning capabilities which means that they learn and improve from human interaction. You can imagine how this will complement the business world as the functionality is becoming a part of many software platforms, enabling, for example, administrative tasks to be completed on time and much faster.
Last but not least is the Mobile First concept. These days, users have many different interfaces to the internet, accessing what they want not just from their desktops/laptops. Software providers have become very well aware of this and have started accommodating desktop functionality in a way that reflects the mobile and smartphone generation.
Modern businesses are thus not limited by the confines of an office and the opportunity to access and work on your analytics whenever and wherever is a useful asset.