“The only thing that is constant is change.”
If you heed this timeless advice, you and your organization may be able to better position itself in the evolving environment around you. If you fail to do so, you will face the wrath of the changes that Father Time always bring forth. Apple is positioning itself for what is perceives to be the future by investing heavily into wearable technology and- reportedly, alongside major competitor Google- self-driving autonomous vehicles, in collaboration with BMW. The Apple Watch has already gotten off to a very shaky start, and developing autonomous-car technologies will definitely be extremely expensive and high stakes.
Will Apple’s gambles on these new products pay off? I am not sure- but Apple is betting its livelihood on it. One thing I can guarantee, however, is that the wearable technology space and automotive industry WILL change dramatically. It’s just a matter of when, and more importantly, how.
One of the most rapidly evolving entities of our lifetime has been Social Media. And the truth is, it is changing so quickly that many are already questioning what it actually is. To demonstrate this point, lets look at Meriem Webster’s definition of Social Media:
I believe the role of Big Data in today’s Social Media is so immersive and critical that it cannot be excluded from the definition. The definition provided above places an extreme emphasis on the interactions between users and other users- which, of course, is absolutely true of social media.
But a new conversation is developing on social media platforms, even more-so between different users. It is so critical, and yet so subtle, that we are taking it for granted and not even realizing its presence its our daily lives. And that is the conversation between the social media platform itself and its users. These platforms are becoming exporters of data vs. importers of data, and are refining data collected to create revolutionary, personalized insights for users.
For starters, the relationship between users and the platform have changed drastically. Initially, users were replied upon heavily to input their own information and demographics into the site, and the main purpose of the site was to provide you with the information that others inputted on the site about themselves. Lots of data was being collected on the user base, but the data was not being analyzed and processed, just presented to other users. Today’s Facebook utilizes the data inputted from users (and now, data collected autonomously with advanced information technology) to gain a revolutionary level of insight about users, and provide/curate content relevant and specific to them. Every single person’s Facebook experience is radically different, and is curated based on experiences even outside of the realm of the platform itself. If you frequently visit a store, and Facebook has access to your location your mobile device, you will find special deals and discounts for that store the next time you’re scrolling through your News Feed. If you listed to a lot of music by Beyoncè, it can recommend a nearby concert that she will be touring at. But the extraordinary amount of information collected by social media platforms will enable them to become extremely personalized decision making platforms for users in the near future. Facebook will be able to recommend what classes to take/what major to study in college, based on advanced analytics tools enabling it to understand us better than we understand ourselves. It will tell two people how compatible they are, not based on a short survey that both filled out, but based on years upon years of information collected on each person and predictive capabilities based on BILLIONS of other cases. And it will even make introductions between various unrelated people, not based on mutual friends or mutual institutional groups, but based on personality insights that no one could ever dream of before.
Imagine that every conversation you’ve ever had, and any experience you’ve ever had, happened in the same exact room. Before, the room was inanimate; it simply provided a location for you to talk to your friends and have great experiences. But what if the room could hear everything going on inside? See everything, feel everything, smell everything? And lastly, what if it could even talk to you, both when you are alone and enjoying experiences with others? The union between Big Data and Social Media will allow social media platforms will know more about us than we can ever hope to know. And if (when) Artificial Intelligence is added to the mix, human decision-making will never be the same. Is that a good thing or a bad thing?