My wife, for her birthday, wanted a video camera and since I am such a good husband I bought her one. I am into photography and never really thought about getting a video camera; moreover, most of the digital cameras we own have video capabilities that we never use. The rational for buying yet another camera was: (1) the wife wanted it and (2) I figured it would be fun to play with another media medium. So … I bought her a camera for her birthday.
Yesterday I videoed Jared’s soccer match and using iMovie HD put together a little movie. I had already done a short and quick clip of one of my fishing trips, but this time I was undertaking a much bigger task. I shot a bunch of short clips during the match and last night I imported them and put together the short video enclosed at the end of this post. I am now a filmmaker, albeit not a good one, but for my first time around, really, I would think not a bad effort. Ed Wood would be proud.
Movie making aside, technology has always caught me off guard and surprised me. Mind you that I make my living with technology and on a regular basis I am exposed to really advanced and new technologies. One of my trademarks is being an innovator, always staying as current as possible with bleeding edge technology and using those technologies to solve business problems. But iMovie HD is an application that comes bundled with every Mac; in other words, it is consumer grade software that works superbly on a stock computer. Anybody can now be a filmmaker and produce videos with some level of quality. Technology to some extent is being demystified.
What keeps on surprising me is the contrast that I have experienced in my career. For the last 25 years, actually a little more, I have seen a tremendous change. When I first started with computers I had an HP 41C programmable calculator. To this day I think that it was the greatest. I also had a Commodore 64 and access to an Apple II and then an Apple IIc. I also had access to ORT’s data center, which, the first year I had access to it, still used punch cards. The second year punch cards had gotten replaced. Nonetheless, the machinery used at that data center occupied half a floor and did not have that much computational power.
Fast forward 25+ years and I am writing this Blog entry on a MacBook Pro that has a gizillion more times computational power that the first data center I set foot in. Not only that, my kids, both have MacBooks and individually they have more computational power than those first data centers as well. Computing machines have evolved so much in the last 50 years. From computers that would occupy entire buildings used to perform ballistic calculations, to laptops solving problems way more complex problems than ballistic equations. You can always quote Moore’s law to me, but Moore’s law does not take into consideration the direction of the innovation.
On TechCrunch, last night, there was an article about the future of commerce. On the post it was reported that ICANN CEO Paul Twomey stated at a conference that virtual worlds are the future of global commerce. Virtual Worlds?? Amazing. I agree. Not only I agree, I am certain. But the problem is the interface semantics. The current interface semantics is wrong. Going back to Apple for a moment, what they are doing with the iPhone and iPod Touch is remarkable. They are not only introducing a new interface to the market, but I can guaranty you that they are coming up with a way to write this blog without a keyboard. Call it dictation or some other form. With their current devices they are experimenting with a change if semantics and paradigms. Eventually, somebody will fully figure it out and not only devices like the iPhone, but also Virtual Worlds will be more life changing than imagined before.
From computers taking entire buildings to house them, to iPhones, to Virtual Worlds. What an extraordinary trip. I wonder what the next 25 to 50 years will bring us.