April 2012 Synopsis 28
The Scan™ Meeting on 7 March 2012 identified three thematic areas:
- Societal and commercial developments includes P0325, "The Future of Text"; P0327, "Chinese-Western 'Coopetition'"; P0329, "Serenity: The Reward of Disconnecting"; and P0334, "Tackling Democratic Corporatocracy."
- Health and human issues features P0326, "Food Labels Change Food Choices"; P0332, "Deepening Understanding of Emotion"; and P0333, "For Medical Research, the Future Is Now."
- Systems and enabling technologies consists of P0328, "Pervasive Surveillance"; P0330, "Autonomous Robots in the Wild"; P0331, "Carbon's Rapid Evolution"; P0335, "Inoculating the Internet"; and P0336, "Debatable Climate-Change Solutions."
The Future of Text P0325
Digital textbooks and new communication services will have an impact on how people use language and how language itself will change and adapt to new media.
Whether in use to implement public policies or to market authentically to various demographics, intuitive and highly visual food-labeling techniques are becoming increasingly important in the marketing and distribution of food.
Increasingly, strategists and businesspeople in China and Western countries understand that—despite ongoing competitive concerns—the way forward will have to be one of cooperative competition.
Pervasive Surveillance P0328
Recent developments and events highlight the possibility of pervasive surveillance and point to a wide range of implications.
A growing number of consumers are searching for quietness and serenity, finding enjoyment in disconnecting from constant communication, and disengaging from the practice of adopting the newest generation of devices.
Employment of autonomous and semiautonomous robots is becoming reality. The use of drones for military and law-enforcement purposes has become familiar, and increasing use of autonomous construction robots could be just around the corner.
Carbon's Rapid Evolution P0331
An element that underpins life itself, carbon is becoming an increasingly useful building block for a variety of new devices and systems in the world of engineering.
Emotions drive human decision making, but research into developing a workable understanding of emotions and identifying factors that influence them still seems to be at a fairly early stage.
Tangible advances in medical research promise an imminent revolution across various areas of medicine and health care.
Lately, income inequality, imbalanced distribution of political power, and social concerns have featured more prominently in the media and across organizations—perhaps rightfully so.
Inoculating the Internet P0335
Individual ingenuity and entrepreneurism are helping the internet evolve defenses and protection mechanisms.
Despite ongoing debates about the urgency that climate change warrants and the viability of political solutions, researchers and business executives are offering an increasingly wide range of potential approaches.
Signals of Change
Developing Innovation Hubs SoC573
Many regions are trying to emulate Silicon Valley's success, and some science and research centers are springing up in surprising geographical locations—potentially setting the stage for substantial changes in the global innovation landscape.
DIY Health Care SoC574
As technological developments increasingly place tools at individuals' fingertips, converging trends—namely, social health, personalized medicine, continuous monitoring, and mobile health—have the potential to revolutionize the health-care industry rapidly.
The Economics of Happiness SoC575
This Signal of Change discusses several data points that suggest that individual happiness may be built into the fabric of society itself—varying as a function of macroeconomic and political forces—and not just a function of a series of individual decisions.
Information technology can filter data and select information that focuses on individuals' preferences and requirements. Advertisers may also use filters to target market segments and even individuals more effectively. Increasingly, online-advertising concepts and approaches can translate into real-world campaigns.
Information technology supports humans in virtually every commercial field. A number of developments indicate that this relationship is about to flip. In the future, humans might support IT operations, serving as a resource that computers can outsource work to.
Localization as Strategy SoC578
Localization—the systematic and strategic adaptation of a product or service to address the needs endemic to a specific locale and thereby gain advantages in that market—is an important prerequisite for success in many markets and an important step on the path to global reach.