CEBIT: Microtrend analyst says '4.0' era is upon us

A microtrend analyst says move over 3.0, here comes the 4.0 era.

A future where "technology and human become one" is fast arriving, according to Nils Muller, CEO of TrendOne, a German microtrend analysis firm.

Passive entertainment such as standard television embodied the 1.0 era, Muller said Tuesday during a panel discussion at the Cebit show, going on this week in Hanover, Germany. Web 2.0 saw a rise in audience-generated content like blogs and podcasts. The ongoing 3.0 period represents a deeper level of engagement, where users "jump into" media such as virtual worlds, he added.

But evidence of the '4.0' era -- an "always-on" world where humans can "self-upgrade" through technology extensions -- is already nigh and being driven by the youngest generation, according to Muller.

"Our kids will talk to the Web like they talk to a friend," he said as a video presentation showed a user entering a series of natural-language queries such as "how far away is the moon" into the AskWiki search engine, now in beta.

While to adults virtual worlds such as Second Life were novelties, today's children are growing up virtually, he argued. As evidence, Muller pointed to Barbie Girls, a virtual world launched last year. Some three million young fans of the doll signed up for the service within 60 days of its launch, according to one report.

Outside of computers, three-dimensional technologies will find widespread applications, Muller said. 3-D printers, now expensive devices often used for design and prototyping, will cost US$760 "and everyone can have one at home," he predicted.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Chris Kanaracus

IDG News Service

Comments

Comments are now closed.

Latest News Articles

Most Popular Articles

Follow Us

GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott

STYLISTIC Q702

My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Resources

Best Deals on GoodGearGuide

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?