Areas of life are brought together as data streams

At the last Online Stammtisch OWL – an event regularly supported by comspace – alpha blogger Robert Basic visited and held a 30-minute-lecture about how very much Web 2.0 is actually passé. As a trend. Because we are all in the midst of it.

Far more interesting was his given future prospect on the next 20 years that we would like to enlarge upon once more at this point. If you were not able to attend the Online Stammtisch OWL, you will find a review and Robert Basic’s whole lecture as a video in our blog.

The evolution of the web

I would like to describe the period of time from the "invention" of the web by Tim Berners Lee in 1992 to the introduction of web browsers, such as Netscape, up to the development of the first search engines as an "orientation phase". There were the first tools to deal with the new, innovative information-raw-material internet. Stone Age.

Google did not only bring a little order to the chaos but created a new kind of order by its search algorithms. One and the same piece of information could suddenly be simultaneously sorted in an infinite number of drawers. Previously, a librarian could place a physical book only at one spot in the library shelf. This makes the web easy to use for us. But what is far more important is: Google made the net of machines usable and manageable for machines.

Facebook climbed the next self-created evolution level: it made humans readable for machines. Individual interests can be associated and analyzed. Just as interactions and connections between people became suddenly visible. A technology from the net does not only map out itself, but us and our connections among each other, to brands, activities and so on.

Constantly in flux: Big Data

Facebook as an example clearly demonstrates the phenomenon Big Data: Facebook servers are processing 2.5 billion single information bites: wall posts, comments, photos and so on. Daily! In addition there are 2.7 billion Likes and 300 million photos each day. The pure amount of data that originates from this sums up to about 500 terabytes. Every day.

This is a lot of data. Facebook’s Vice President of Engineering, Jay Parikh, says:
"Big Data means to gain insights and to convert it into added value. If not done, one only has a huge pile of data."

The idea is therefore to permanently scan and analyze the accruing data in order to improve products or to detect the demand for new features and products and to thus to be able to see to them quicker than the competition.

Internet of Things

So far we have only looked at the machines regarding the web and us. As our extended memory, smartphones come along at an unsurpassed speed and they make us ascertainable and evaluable. Be it by geo-position or usage behavior.

However, the connection to the web and the evaluability of utilization behavior also applies more and more to "normal" devices: cars will soon be able to communicate with each other and mutually report dangerous areas as well as traffic jams. Washing machines are not only turned on, but do get a certain point in time when they are to be done and get the information when they shall turn on again via the "smart grid".  The front door key does no longer get lost, but sends its position to the smartphone via RFID.

If things are interlinked in such a way or not yet imaginable ways, then we are talking about the Internet of Things.

What does this mean for us, our core competence content management and our customers?

The above described data, the contents and insights that can be gained from them, will be a substantial part of a company’s competitive ability in the future. Especially the ability to see how the customer behaves and what is of interest for the customer is going to be an essential part of content management.  Even how, by his utilization behavior on company websites, the customer is informative regarding possible problems, for which we as a company can create a value added solution, will be the task of a CMS.

The evolution of the CMS is comparable to the evolution of the web. First, content was simply organized. Then it became machine-readable and usable by machines. Today we can already detect and recognize user- and utilization behavior in our Content Management Systems and what possibilities will arise in the future in our own micro-Facebooks, which we call  company websites, is only left to our creativity and, in case of doubt, to the data security engineer.

What does it mean for our future life?

In order to answer this question, we did ask two persons who ought to know and who are primarily dealing with the topic of living and lifestyle:

The first one is Frank Kreif – chief editor and publisher of the magazines trenddokument and Smart Homes. He examines for you the type of living in the future (and calms our anxieties regarding changes a little).

The other one is Jan Westerbarkey, CEO of the Westaflex Group and expert for the topic creation of living space supported by modern tools, such as tablet pcs and smartphones. He provides an outlook on how our living spaces are going to be created in the future and how building owners, contractors and suppliers can work together.