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March 04 2013

The mobile economy in 2013

The full report presented an interesting view on the current mobile market trends, although very positive it’s impossible not to see the slowdown of previous years growth. Revenues will increase, subscribers as well, but things aren’t going to be as great as they have been before..

It’s a forecast, but I’m not really impressed by these numbers, but it could be a wrong reading not sure, so here are my comments:

GSMA Mobile Economy 2013

Considering that we are roughly 7 Billion persons today (but we won’t be much more in 2017 – 2020 seems to be the year we might pass the 8bn threshold) the growth from 3.2 to 3.9 Bn mobile subscribers by 2017 doesn’t leave me impressed. It clearly means we still have much to do on the front of universal access, as according to this numbers we’ll still have only roughly 50% of the world population connected. The number of connections seems impressive, but then again this will be mostly due to the internet of things and all the new connected machines it will bring.

LTE seems it will only be a reality for a fifth of the connected ones, ok, this is a global number, meaning that more evolved markets will see a much better picture and others will not, fair enough, but not impressive either, specially considering that some of the less developed markets could leapfrog directly to LTE when it’s time to evolve or deploy their new networks.

GSMA Mobile Economy 2013

Globally voice will still grow, but clearly not as much as messaging and data, although a big part of the voice will probably also be data, right?

GSMA Mobile Economy 2013

It’s good to see Joyn (the project I worked on for Vodafone) get a special highlight here on the future communications page on the report, although I personally believe it’s a critically and much needed technology upgrade to increase the overall quality of mobile user experience (fixing seriously broken experiences like video or file sharing, but also general terms of interoperability), I have to say that at the current market launch plans and delays, I’m not certain where it will be in 2017, but I’ll keep my fingers crossed and eyes open for developments there.

But then again, I’m still going through the report, have a read yourself, the full report is here, enjoy ;)

August 21 2012

June 11 2012

Today is the future!

Living in the Clouds

Some weeks back I took this photo from the plane, while flying over london, at the time, this image stayed in my mind for a couple of days, it still is. Those are actual buildings coming out of the clouds and it just reminded me as a kid when we saw all those sci-fi cartoons/movies with people actually living above the clouds. No rain, always sunshine, to actually have a clean sky as an horizon everyday. It might turn out to be boring I’m sure, but the thing is that this vision is here, ok no flying, still bounded to it’s earth roots, but it’s here. And in may ways we just grow used to it and ignore it completely. We are living in the Future, just like William Gibson wrote:

“The future is already here — it’s just not very evenly distributed”

Why I thought about this today again? did I though about this today?

Well today I came across another amazing example: read the NTT Docomo (one of Japan’s largest mobile operators) press release where they announce a second large trial (10K users this time) of their Real Time Voice Interpretation/Translation Service:

Yes, exactly that, realtime translation over voice, one party talks in Japanese on one side of the line and on the other end, it comes out… English, Spanish, or whatever language the receiving device is configured to.

If this isn’t tottally out of a sci-fi film, hit me on the face…
I’m telling you we need to wake up, today is the future, not tomorrow!

May 01 2012

Welcome to the Anthropocene

Every living thing affects its surroundings. But humanity is now influencing every aspect of the Earth on a scale akin to the great forces of nature.

There are now so many of us, using so many resources, that we’re disrupting the grand cycles of biology, chemistry and geology by which elements like carbon and nitrogen circulate between land, sea and atmosphere. We’re changing the way water moves around the globe as never before. Almost all the planet’s ecosystems bear the marks of our presence.

Our species’ whole recorded history has taken place in the geological period called the Holocene – the brief interval stretching back 10,000 years. But our collective actions have brought us into uncharted territory. A growing number of scientists think we’ve entered a new geological epoch that needs a new name – the Anthropocene.

Probably the best-known aspect of our newfound influence is what we’re doing to the climate. Atmospheric carbon dioxide may be at its highest level in 15 million years. But this is just one part of the story; we’re changing the planet in countless ways. Nutrients from fertilizer wash off fields and down rivers, creating stretches of sea where nothing grows except vast algal blooms; deforestation means vast quantities of soil are being eroded and swept away. Rich grasslands are turning to desert; ancient ice formations are melting away; species everywhere are vanishing.

These developments are all connected, and there’s a risk of an irreversible cascade of changes leading us into a future that’s profoundly different from anything we’ve faced before. Little by little, we’re creating a hotter, stormier and less diverse planet.

The Anthropocene is a decisive break from what came before. Scientists are still debating exactly when it began – was it when our distant forebears started to farm the land? With the industrial revolution? With the dawn of the atomic era, even?

Whenever the new epoch started, we’re living in it now. And if our descendants look back in thousands of years’ time, they’ll see the evidence of our actions written everywhere in the rocks.

more on Anthropocene.Info

February 21 2012

Networked Society

The impacts of the broadband, of internet, of being able to go online anytime, anywhere are still mostly unknown. They are certain to impact our future as never before, as they allow for access, sharing and connectivity at a global scale in an unprecedented scale, as the – On the Brink (Ericsson’s Network Society Series) – movie documents and according to Jeff Bezos from Amazon, we’re really just in the lightbulb period of the networked society, much like Thomas Edison that reshaped the cities to introduce the lightbulbs ignoring all the other appliances that would soon follow, so are we in the very brink of the full and real impacts of network society…

How will the future be like in 10 years?
How will our society definitions (economics, education health, security) be redefined to cope and adapt to the new reality?
Ideas?

February 20 2012

(re)Thinking Cities

I’ fascinated with cities, Cities as a construct, Cities planning, Cities composition, Cities history, Cities inner and hidden flows and patterns, but I’m also concern about their future and their sustainability. So today when I saw the video above – Thinking Cities – by Ericsson as part of their Networked Society Series, I’m puzzled and surprised at the same time, it’s a short, simple movie but it summarizes much of the questions that flow into my mind when we discuss about cities.

Cities are a fabric of the industrial revolution they are the pinacle of urbanization. We, humans seem to be called upon cities as bees to the hive, we love their “energy”, the feeling of belonging (although sometimes it’s also the opposite – the feeling of anonymity they provide), but somehow cities ever beating, non-stop rhythm seems to as close to our heart as our own heartbeat. This is so true that 52% of world population is now living in cities for the first time in history.

On one end cities, consuming 70% of our global energy production, seem to one if not the, root cause all our “recent” societies problems, think about trash, pollution, food scarceness, energy production, crime, diseases, you name it. The other end is a much brighter one, Cities are the HUBs where all the creative energy seems to flow, taking an unprecedented levels of engagement and ideas generation, which as Geoffrey West, a scientist who studies cities, states in the movie is why it will also be the cities who will ultimately will drive the solutions for these same problems that seem to affect them today.

Technology is helping is see beyond the obvious, to understand cities as a distributed, alive, sentient systems. Technology allows us to better understand Cities. Technology allow us today in realtime to see the hidden patterns, the hidden layers of activities and flow as they happen. It’s as if technology is enabling cities to talk back to us for the first time. Question is are we ready to or even listening?

Social media tools seem to be forcing cities politics to be entirely reshaped as they empower individuals and groups, previously ignored to have a voice and reach to their ideas and movements like never before. These days to belong to a city means to be connected, to be part of the system. To live in a city is to be part of the collective, to loose part of our identity to become part of the the whole. To be assimilated. My actions affects those around while at the same our collective behavior dictates our quality of living, what we can and can’t do, what we will be able to do in the future.

So it keeps me puzzled if we’re so connected to each other, with so much technology already next to us, how come people seem to be more distant than ever from the structures that govern them?

How will we, as individuals or as a collective become more aware, more participative in the makings of the city around us?

How do we become better informed, more participative?
What tools will we need?
How will we act upon our findings?
Are cities the future or are they (and us) doomed?

So many questions popping up on my mind..
any ideas you may want to share?

February 04 2012

A Day Made of Glass (2)

I like this video and I like the touchscreen based interactions in it, do you?

With iPhone 4, Apple showed us that glass (or better aluminosilicate glass)can make amazingly beautiful and resistant devices, but last year a company called Corning went one step forward and published a video with a vision beyond small devices – “A Day Made of Glass.”. A vision centered around glass, where and if combined with the right technology and high speed wireless networks, glass can be so much more and help technology be even more present and all around us.

It’s an interesting video, and there’s a bit more info at Corning website if you’d like to read more about their vision.

January 29 2012

Time to upgrade …

I really believe that our current model of living is ultimately doomed, I feel we have too much and most of all we wast too much. Maybe it has been the reading of books like “End of progress” or “Hungry city” (thank you Igor!), but this post an the readings from the past week have been utterly shaped by my recent family losses and the need to find some meaning to much of what happens around me and the way I imagine my future. A few days ago, I managed to see some old footage recorded by my parents when I was about 3… I loved it, I cried, but apart from that one thing I noticed was how happy they were we far less than we consider essencial today, they weren’t poor, they had plenty for the times they lived in, but somehow they seemed to enjoy more.

Ever since the organization of the first SHiFT one of our key mottos have been that we already have plenty of technology, we’re just not doing enough with it, we’re constantly looking at the next big thing, forgetting and not valuing what we have today… feels strange when put like this, but just look around you and imagine how many people go without access to basic technology, does it need to be like that?

Today I came across a project entitled Earth 2.0 which seems to a step into raising awareness that we do need indeed to do more. The video combines some rather interesting and futuristic statements of innovative and to me far sighted individuals. Earth 2.0 seems to have it’s sole purpose around a message of sustainability, a movement for change, a path to the future. So I’m rather curious to see upcoming updates to it… let’s see ;)

January 28 2012

Heart Stop Beating

Heart Stop Beating is the story of Billy Cohn & Bud Frazier, two visionary doctors from the Texas Heart Institute, who in March of 2011 successfully replaced a dying man’s heart with a ‘continuous flow’ device they developed, proving that life and human physiology is possible without a pulse or a heart beat.

January 22 2012

Metropolis II by Chris Burden

Chris Burden kinetic sculpture portrays a futuristic city, populated by fast moving vehicles on transparent roads, certainly reminds me of Fritz Lang Metropolis film. From the energy, caos and apparent order Burden built an impressive piece of art, an evocation to our preferred way of living – in cities – and as more than half of todays world population lives in cities, with it’s energy, stress, order, caos and problems. I can imagine that the next years and century will prove key on how these artificial agglomerates can work in sustainable, healthy and attractive ways to their inhabitants, wouldn’t you agree?

December 03 2010

November 09 2010

Surrogates are here!

Android won’t probably just be part of yet another movie like Surrogates in a time not far away from the one we live today! I’ve came across the following video by Kokoro show casing their latest developments with their Actroid technology:

One important feature of this Actroid F it’s “her” capability to be remotely controlled rendering an impressive visual and almost realistic telepresence while still being remotely controlled. Sounds strange? Well think a bit about a lot of high-risk professions (people working on gas stations in the night, or in a life threatening situations, etc.)? Can we put a value for each spared life/trauma? I believe not! But then again, this also puts us one step closer to all the doom’s day vision that contain remote controlled (and non-accountable) armies, right?

This might be my tech-freak post of the year, but just imagining all the GOOD possibilities, gets my mind bubbling! Just try to imagine the impact of this in the way we perceive and interact with services, their availability, our expectations towards their responses. It might sound strange as all things new, but I think this path is unavoidable. And it’s almost sad to think that I’ve come across much less human staff already! In that sense this Android is almost unreal, as it displays a rarely seen array of human expressions and emotions! He! He!

What’s your take on this? How do you feel towards this?

November 22 2009

Virtual Autopsy Table

It’s not pretty, and certainly not for the fainted hearted…
But I can’t be nothing but amazed at this visualization project.

Some years ago it was the ‘Visible Human Project‘ that both socked us, but also amazed us and help us see and learn a whole lot about the contents of our bodies, today I came across The Virtual Autopsy Table, an interactive installation, where users can freely interact with stunning volumetric 3D datasets acquired via start of the art medical imaging technics of real scanned human bodies. The result is simply amazing:

November 20 2009

Google Chrome OS

Something special coming up around the corner:

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November 13 2009

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