Are You Ready to Think “BIG” Again in Technology

One man’s dream is another man’s reality. Yesterday, I saw it in real at the Salesforce conference held in NYC. It was amazing to see so many cool applications and technologies that I could only dream about a few years ago. Have you ever imagined creating a web application without programming in less than 10 minutes, publishing it on the web by click of a button, and scaling it up or down based on the number of users through your iPhone? I witnessed it done in less than 15 minutes! Five years ago, there was no iPhone, web applications were created by expert programmers, and specialist administrators used to spend hours hosting and managing such applications. Now one person can do it all in matter of minutes, maybe hours, but still 100x better than before. Maybe I was oblivious to innovation taking place in the software world but I can’t be so much out of touch. After all, my wife complains that I read, blog and surf technical stuff all the time. What did I miss?

 Sometimes I wonder if we are driving technology or technology is driving us? The Internet changed the scene in late 90s, but with dot-com burst we thought it had reached its pinnacle. However, not only was the Internet alive but also it came back with a vengeance with web 2.0 that unleashed the second wave of innovation in terms of collaboration and social networking. In a few years, almost 700 million people started facebooking, another 100 million started tweeting, and not to mention many millions who are talking through other social networks. While Facebook and Twitter are considered consumer networks, Salesforce and the likes are bringing social networking to the corporate world. I was stunned by how far human imagination can stretch, when Salesforce chatter service announced that now your employees, clients, partners, data, reports, and dashboard- all will start chattering.  It means when you “follow” a report like you “follow” a person on Twitter, the report will start tweeting information to you. Similarly you can follow data, documents, presentations and anything you can think of in your daily work for it to chatter back to you. Wait a second, weren’t we struggling to implement that large, monolithic ERP application a few weeks ago? 

I am convinced that human will and intellect can move mountains and make impossible possible. Add crowdsourcing to it and things start to move much faster. I believe the innovation I saw at the conference is not just one company’s achievement but a culmination of many discoveries by different companies across industries. The Internet is obviously the backbone of this ecosystem offering great improvements in speed, reliability and pervasiveness. Device manufacturers like Apple, Samsung, RIM and others pushed the ball forward to make the “always connected” dream possible. Finally, the software companies completed the picture by continuously innovating technologies such as visualization, search and social networks, and streamlining the development and management of web applications.  Suddenly the world is moving much faster due to interconnected innovations and economies of scale. I can’t think of the next big thing but I can sense that we are building an “Internet” kind of revolution again. I am excited about the future and ready to dream big. Are you?

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4 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Sahil Arora on March 4, 2011 at 7:39 pm

    I am sure you have read about HAARP? Technology is a very vast domain, you should not restrict yourself to educate yourself about web, facebook, iphone etc which is very much exposed. Do spend some time on HAARP and if you find this interesting and want to expand your base other than common exposed technologies, I will send you few more keywords.

    Reply

  2. Sahil, thanks for reading and commenting on my blog. I agree with you that technology is a vast domain. I know very little about a few things but I am always up for learning new things. I will look up HAARP. Feel free to send more pointers my way.

    Reply

  3. Can you elaborate on the 15-minute demo you saw? I don’t believe you… :)

    Reply

  4. Hey Coenraad,
    I saw this demo more than a year ago at Salesforce’s Cloudforce conference in NYC. They had bought Heroku a few weeks ago and this demo was by Heroku team. You can create a simple application without much coding using SFDC’s api and then host it using Heroku. Heroku has a mobile app that lets you manage your application deployment from your iPhone. It was pretty cool. I am sure it must have improved a ton in the last 12+ months. Checkout Heroku for more details.
    -Rohit

    Reply

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