Blockchain, AI, and Quantum Computing make for a perfect Dunkirk style 2018

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Blockchain, AI, and Quantum Computing make for a perfect Dunkirk style 2018

The movie Dunkirk follows the heroic actions of many leading up to saving thousands of troops stuck on the Dunkirk beach in France. The events are played out in one-week, one-day, and one-hour formats and create a unique look at what transpired. As the new year approaches, you will no doubt be bombarded by reports focused around “new trends” or “emerging tech.” This year, consider a Dunkirk style approach as we go into 2018 by focusing on how my three top topics below can fit into your first month, first quarter, and the entire year of tech focus as a company.

According to an analysis I put together from social mentions, there are six emerging tech topics on the landscape ranked by mention total — IoT, Blockchain, Artificial Intelligence, Altered Realities (AR/VR), Chatbots & Voice Recognition, and Quantum Computing. Of those, three stick out as the fastest growing topics year over year — blockchain, AI, and quantum computing.

Next month: Blockchain tech has been coming on strong ever since a power creator of BitCoin used 10,000 of the crypto currency units to have two pizzas delivered to his door. Those pizzas, at today’s prices, are worth $140 million. Some will argue that cryptocurrency is a bubble, but it’s hard to ignore the technology behind it. Dan and Alex Tapscott, authors of “Blockchain Revolution” provided this great definition of the technology — “The blockchain is an incorruptible digital ledger of economic transactions that can be programmed to record not just financial transactions but virtually everything of value.”

Over the past year, average daily mentions related to blockchain have increased nearly 400 percent more than any of the other previous six tech topics listed. In 2017 alone, $1.98 billion was raised by companies engaged with blockchain. There are many more on the horizon for ICOs (initial coin offering) in the next 12 months. A few that I thought were interesting, StockChain Global — looking to ICO in January — is proposing a disruption to financial services as we know it. Another, Energi Mine, uses blockchain tech to trade and manage energy purchased by blue chip companies.

The financial services industry is the start of blockchain, but it’s not hard to see the technology bleeding into other systems and industries in the near future.

Next quarter: Quantum computing provides immense opportunity in the ability to crunch data, and could pair closely with artificial intelligence. The tech lies within the ability to use quantum mechanics to create a computer that is efficient and powerful. Recently, Volkswagen paired with D-wave technology to test quantum computing on improving Beijing traffic patterns. Crunching through data that would take the fastest computer in the world years to evaluate, D-wave and quantum computing was able to provide insights within days.

The future of quantum computing lies within its ability to take analytics and data to the next level. For the past decade, “big data” has been a leading buzz word. Quantum computing can take the data being gathered and start producing those elusive insights that don’t always come efficiently enough under current systems.

Next year: Artificial Intelligence continues to grow on consumers’ minds. Mentions related to the tech topic are up nearly 300 percent year over year, perhaps led by the market being flooded with smart home devices. Amazon now has 5 under $199 and as low as $39 during Black Friday sales.

As I talked about in an Adobe Digital Insights’ analysis on the “Future of Work” earlier this year, people are most excited about AI as it relates to data analyzing and automation of mundane tasks. People feel it will free up time to spend extra effort on creative tasks and story building. Many might say the AI is the biggest catalyst to the future of analytics and business.

Blockchain, quantum computing, and artificial intelligence are three major topics worth looking into in 2018. If brought together you may even find they create a masterful business storyline for your business in the next month, next quarter, and next year similar to Christopher Nolan’s heroic epic Dunkirk.

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