Technology has flourished as an industry by creating continuous substitutes for human processes and, lately, even for itself. Increasing compute power, storage and bandwidth – speeds and feeds- have helped us automate, accelerate and connect ever faster and with increasing richness and context. Telecoms and then mobile phones replaced mail and in-person meetings. Mainframes and PCs replaced manual computations. The Internet displaced bricks-and-mortar businesses of all kinds. Even in today’s relatively stagnant macroeconomy, there is always growth in the area of tech that is displacing an incumbent solution. However, despite the impact that technology has had on so many aspects of so many people’s lives, “tech” has remained a standalone sector.
My prediction for the biggest underlying trend in technology for 2014 is the death of tech.
Or rather, the acceleration of the death of technology as a separate and somewhat independent sector. We will see the “cross-pollination” of core technical advances applied to traditional industries, both by tech companies and also by leaders in those respective industries. Innovation, design and development will emerge from retailers, banks, medical companies, auto manufacturers and industrials. This will also affect the demand for hiring top tech talent as many companies hire directly into key business areas and not just the “IT” department.