We have ‘fitbits for cows!’ Connectivity on the ranch is widespread, as is every form of technology! In this keynote, I took a looking not only at the idea of ‘Ranching 2025,’ but the retail and consumer trends which might impact the beef and cattle industry going forward. We live in the era of acceleration, and everyone involved in the world of agriculture must keep up the pace!
Archives for July 2014
On October 1, I’ll be keynoting the 2014 PLRExpo in Toronto. The organizers asked if I would do a quick little video teaser for the event; and so a few weeks ago, and I said “sure!”
The result was this clip, done in 1 take in my backyard. Fun stuff!The Drytech Group – great looking lighting! Just before the take, we had lawn mowers and garbage trucks rushing about the neighbourhood, and were lucky to get a moment of silence!
Here’s a fun little video clip from a keynote this February, when I opened the annual conference for the Association of Test Publishers. These are the folks who manage the LSAT, GMAT’s and other professional skill tests.We are in a time that has us witnessing the rapid emergence of all kinds of new careers. I’ve been talking about careers such as “robotic pharmaceutical therapy monitors,” “water footprint analysts,” “vertical farming infrastructure managers,” “drone helicopter insurance crop risk managers”, and, of course, manure managers! You’ll find a link for the latter at the bottom of this post.
People don’t realize how quickly every industry is changing; how quickly new careers are evolving; how rapidly business models are changing. This keynote challenged the audience to think about they would have to do in the future to provide testing and certification for rapidly emerging new professions and skills.
The folks at SingleHop approached me; they are running a blog series related to the fact that that yesterday was “Embrace Your Geekness Day.”
They suggested I should do a post about it. So here it is!
So here is why I’m a geek, and more geekier than most other folks who have posted a blog in honour this day.
- I was online in 1982, via a TRS-80 Radio Shack computer, with a 300 baud modem that had acoustic couplers. When you read your email, it came in character-by-character; one per second. Long email messages were not tolerated. This was 25 years before Twitter.
- I still have most of those emails, and every one since. We are talking about a 32 year old archive of email. I don’t make this stuff up.
- my first portable computer weighed 25 pounds. It was a Hyperion; built in Canada. It had two 128k floppy drives ; and was the first big tech failure of Canada (after that, there was Nortel, and then there was RIM). This was also 1982.
- I still have both those computers in my basement. They both still run. My kids are 19 and 21. When they were born, these computers were already ancient. Since then, we have gone to museums, and see the same computers. Outgeek that!
- when Napster came around in 1999, it already seemed old. Before Napster, there was USENET and alt.music. Look it up.
- geekness comes from being one of the first who hung around Bix. And Compuserve. And The Source. Oh, and who knew how to do email to someone with a .uucp address.
I’m not trying to suggest that I’m any sort of uber-geek.
I’m in awe of the fact that I got to see so much of the early architecture of what is now something so fundamental to the human race.
My message is this: take a snapshot for a moment of your geek-life. Remember it.
Because in 10 years, it won’t look *anything* like it does today. You will suddenly think that you lived in ancient times.
The American Academy of Actuaries has just released their July / August edition of Contingencies Magazine, with an article about the impact of technology on actuarial practice.
It’s a great article: with quotes such as this, you know its presenting some challenging ideas as to how insurance industry, and the actuarial profession that assesses risk, is in for wild ride:
“From intelligent interfaces like Google’s Explorer glass to ingestible microsensors, virtual reality, and artificial intelligence, burgeoning technological advances stand poised to disrupt traditional practices within the actuarial profession and the insurance industry.”
I’m quoted liberally throughout the article.You can click the image to access the PDF.
From the intro to the article:
REMEMBER THE SLIDE RULE? For actuaries of a certain generation, slide rules were an invaluable accessory. Invaluable, that is, until the invention of the personal calculator. In the same way, many experts believe that Excel spreadsheets, the current workhorse of most actuarial departments, will soon be replaced by calculating in the cloud. Disruptive technology—the term of art for any technological advance that unexpectedly displaces an established process—is now expanding so quickly that one disrupter often is almost immediately superseded by another. (Consider the rapidity with which we’ve moved from using GPS devices in our cars to letting mobile apps on our smartphones do the job. By the end of the decade, it’s likely that automatic cars will not only navigate but also do the driving.)
Innovations that qualify as disruptive technology are actual ly both disruptive and connective, said futurist Jim Carroll. Not only is the way that people and devices are getting connected “unprecedented,” Carroll said, so is the manner in which all the interconnected data are being analyzed and used.
This goes to one of the main points that I raise with clients: control of innovation in every single industry is shifting to technology companies, and the pace of innovation is accelerating to that of Silicon Valley as a result. Every industry is coming to be ruled by the reality of Moore’s Law! This is providing for a lot of fascinating change and disruption!
I also offer some comments on might happen with life insurance policies as we go forward
Using more personalized information will lead to what Carroll calls “performance-oriented insurance,” which he defined as coverage in which the risk will be accurately understood. “And if your measurable activities reduce or eliminate any risk, you will be rewarded through a rebate or reduction in insurance cost,” Carroll explained—something that is already happening with one of Progressive’s auto-insurance products.
“There will be an emergence of insurance companies forthose who are willing to give up their privacy, while other insurers might write coverage for those who want to maintain their privacy,” Carroll said. “It is going to change business models.” The connectivity goes further when real-time vitals are sent not just to the doctor but also to an insurance com- pany that’s considering pricing, Carroll said.
It’s a good read, and worth your time. Read the article here.