Where Does Technological Innovation Come From?

Technological innovation comes from many people around the world every single day.  Yet, it is rare to know the names of those who spawn the innovations that eventually reach market and change our lives.  Most people tend to only read headlines instead of history.  If you are one of them, you would think that true technological innovation is generated by a select handful of individuals sitting by themselves in a small garage in California.

There are many examples of a lone innovator scrawling an idea on a napkin or a piece of paper that becomes a billion dollar company, forever altering how we interact with the world. In fact, the current combined net worth of “The Big Four” (Microsoft, Apple, Google, Facebook) is somewhere north of $1.1 TRILLION dollars.  And they were all started with very little money and a single idea.  So how is it that we all know about the humble beginnings of innovators such as Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Larry Page, and Mark Zuckerberg?  Because their stories have been told so many times, they are now the stuff of legend.  Today, parents tell their children they can do the same thing as a tale of optimism, much the same way our parents used to tell us that we if we studied hard we could become the President of the United States.


Looking to the Cloud in 2013

Every year as the calendar comes to an end, a new year invariably elicits statements, declarations, and discussions about what kind of year it will be.  People proudly proclaim that this is they year they will lose that last ten pounds that has been hanging around, pundits make bold proclamations about the future of the political landscape, and industry professionals predict what the next wave will be to revolutionize their specific area of expertise.

For those of us who develop software, it has become clear that the prediction we need to be aware of is that 2013 will be the “boom or bust” year for all things cloud.  Then again, that was also the same prediction we heard heading into 2012.  And yet here we are again standing on the precipice of change.  No one can deny that the last year saw great advances in the world of cloud computing, specifically the proliferation of the public cloud by companies such as Amazon, Google, and Microsoft.  Previously, cloud computing had been the province of smaller niche software companies and data storage centers.  But as that business model showed gains in both popularity of adoption and profitability, the larger companies have finally committed their resources to capitalize on what has become a proven business model.


A Walk through the Clouds

Unless you live under a rock on a deserted island, chances are you have heard about, considered using, or are moving toward “The Cloud.”  It is now a prevalent and unavoidable topic of conversation that has finally made its way from computing industry professionals to the general populace.   In the very near future, “The Cloud” will have become just another term in the lexicon of technology that people accept as a part of their daily computer activity, even if they don’t entirely understand it.  Much like instant messaging, search engine, the web, and Wi-Fi, the cloud is rapidly becoming as much a part of our daily lives as the bowl of cereal we have to start our day.