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Practical Techie: Learning new tech, unlearning the old

The Information Highway is hot and fast-moving as never before with technological trends moving nonstop up and down the fast lanes.

In 2021, innovative trends are in full view and accelerated. As we cruise along, cybernauts are pushed constantly to learn the new tech, relearn the usual and unlearn the old. We have to keep our eyes glued to the road so that the newer technologies do not leave us behind.

EDGE — Edge computing is the top drift. This is a mainstream cloud computing spinoff but with a new twist. As more and more internet users migrate to the cloud, the data fields get crowded and not as efficient as expected. Edge computing provides faster access by placing the most used datasets manage software near the edges of the electronic cloud.  

Before 2021, huge corporate databases lay entrenched in the Deep Web, where storage space is procurable and but well protected against cybercrime by complex codes. For now, edge technology exists as mini data centers, but is fast becoming a full blown functionality as Internet of All things connectivity intensifies this next decade.  

WWW — Talk about the WWW leads us to the next trend. The Web is slowly becoming less worldwide, in design, at least. The WWW has essentially become more regionalized along invisible geographical lines.

For example, Europe is regulating its Web along its own rules and regulations, shunning US tech companies that violate its laws. In turn, the United States is on the verge of banning TikTok and WeChat, or at least, imposing restrictions on usage by minors. India has already imposed its own rules of access to the WWW, according to its cultural values.

Another scheme for web usage occurred when Facebook clashed with the Australian government over a proposed law that would require FB to pay Aussie publishers for use of their content. Facebook replied by restricting access to news sharing in Australia. The game is to alter the way platforms work in one country or another.

Due to such issues, some experts are already describing the new WWW as the “splinternet”, defined along cultural, national or regional borders rather than as a universal structure.

ARTIFICIAL — Artificial Intelligence is a fast-moving work in progress since 2000, but it takes new twists and turns constantly. AI is already ahead with machine learning tech, navigation apps, smartphone brainpower, speech and image recognition. Enhancements beyond 2021 include high-powered analytic functions, ever more clever connectivity and usage insights, smarter predictions.

One example is defining demands for hospital services during a pandemic or natural disaster for best use of resources. In terms of commerce, AI will offer customer behavior analysis in real-time for intuitive and a timely marketing response. Technology trends in automation are already creating strong demand for new job specialties such as robotic monitoring, data scientists, automation experts, and robotic content curators.

ROBOTICS – This takes us to trends in industrial design and the personalization of robotics. Automating jobs is a swing described as Robotic Process Automations, the use of software and machines to automatize business processes, data analysis, and money transactions at large scales, fast speed, and accuracy. Throw in manufacture, assembly-line production, and health monitoring services. Here robots become personal assistants to the infirmed, the handicapped, or the lazy rich. Also, robotic cops and soldiers for use in dangerous scenarios during which their human sidekicks would be in peril. 

QUANTUM — A remarkable technology trend is quantum computing. We are talking about new types of machines that can manage immense quantities of data particles at incredible processing speeds through advanced query, monitoring, and analysis procedures. For example, instantly monitor coronavirus spread by geography, demographics, or physiology.  Also, quantum applications in banking and finance, to manage credit risk, high-frequency trading, and fraud detection.

Quantum computing is machine learning at its highest level. It is also bringing deeper, ever more realistic dimensions to Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality for video games and best of all, training, entertainment, education, marketing, and rehabilitation after an injury. 

Author Details
Author Rafael Matos is a veteran journalist, a professor of digital narratives and university mentor. He may be contacted at cccrafael@gmail.com.

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