iBPMS Expo – Tom Koulopoulos explains process in the Internet of Everything

The second keynote is from Tom Koulopoulos. His talk titled “The Internet of Everything, Everyone, and Everyplace”  was very entertaining and included some somber concerns on how to cope with a future that we can not yet imagine.

How many of you talk about the internet of everything? What are those things? Thermostats, appliances, shoes, code, relationships. Nothing is out of bounds. If something is a ‘thing’ it can be included. People are part of that as well. Everything really means everything, and we usually underestimate that.

The notion of process will be the ‘oxygen’ of this internet of things.

We are often very bad at predicting.  While none of us believe that everything that can be invented is already invented, we do behave that way. We think that opportunities sum, but they don’t, they multiply.

What single word has best defined our ability to reshape society? Connections. Connections have grown while the population grew from 1B in 1800 to 7B today, but the most explosive growth of connections will be machine to machine connections. This will bring an era of mass integration.

In a world of trillions of connections, the role of process is to manage all of them. It is unthinkable that you will be able to manage this number of things manually. The size of this is comparable to the connections in the human brain. This might be a new “intelligence”.

The new generation of people are all connected, and this is the best indication of what future generations will act like. Skype can be always on, and kids can not imagine going for a whole day without seeing someone. This creates huge dependency between people. They truly believe that there is nothing to learn that Google can’t find. This generation will not retreat to an office to solve a problem, but instead will reach out to others. They are hyper-local, and hyper-realtime. This brings about a whole new set of social norms.

Peter Drucker would say that the biggest cultural investment is education,and will pay off more than any other investment. What is all 7B people today were all able to educate themselves? What would that look like?

Mechanical typewriters: typing was slow, corrections onerous.  Question from a millennial about the use of a mechanical typewriter: “Uncle Tom how did you think?” The point is that people are thinking in the technology. Showed a video of a toddler who was trying to select things in a magazine as if it was an iPad.

Generation ‘Z’ starts in 2020, someone born to a world where everyone in the world has the economic possibility to be connected to the internet.

Showed an ATT ad from 1993 that predicted many of the technical aspects of our world today extremely accurately: tablet computers, navigation systems, faxing from the beach, etc. We can accurately predict the technology, but we never understand how the adoption behavior is going to change the world. We consistently underestimate the radical nature of adoption of technology.

We will see the dawn of “behavioral business models” that use predictive knowledge of immensely complex systems.

Analytics problem: data is growing at a much higher rate. But our time to react is getting shorter and shorter. Our current analytic capability will not be sufficient for our future need.

How many here have a reverse mentoring program in place? CISCO does.  Bring in a you digital native and teach the older ones how to really use it.

Biggest challenge is that you are trying to incrementally improve something that is already out of date. Don’t be held hostage by your success or you customers. What do you do if you can not get out of the box? Decorate it very well.

We are creating and living in a “datafied” world.  Not just digital, but datafied.

Process is a superglue that connects a customer to a brand.

The conclusion of this very entertaining talk is that while it is clear that more and more will be connected to the Internet, the effect of this is probably going to be amazing and unbelievable.  We will live to see it.  Get ready now, you will need to adapt as fast as possible, or you will not survive.

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