CEBIT: Microtrend analyst says '4.0' era is upon us

A microtrend analyst says move over 3.0, here comes the 4.0 era.

A future where "technology and human become one" is fast arriving, according to Nils Muller, CEO of TrendOne, a German microtrend analysis firm.

Passive entertainment such as standard television embodied the 1.0 era, Muller said Tuesday during a panel discussion at the Cebit show, going on this week in Hanover, Germany. Web 2.0 saw a rise in audience-generated content like blogs and podcasts. The ongoing 3.0 period represents a deeper level of engagement, where users "jump into" media such as virtual worlds, he added.

But evidence of the '4.0' era -- an "always-on" world where humans can "self-upgrade" through technology extensions -- is already nigh and being driven by the youngest generation, according to Muller.

"Our kids will talk to the Web like they talk to a friend," he said as a video presentation showed a user entering a series of natural-language queries such as "how far away is the moon" into the AskWiki search engine, now in beta.

While to adults virtual worlds such as Second Life were novelties, today's children are growing up virtually, he argued. As evidence, Muller pointed to Barbie Girls, a virtual world launched last year. Some three million young fans of the doll signed up for the service within 60 days of its launch, according to one report.

Outside of computers, three-dimensional technologies will find widespread applications, Muller said. 3-D printers, now expensive devices often used for design and prototyping, will cost US$760 "and everyone can have one at home," he predicted.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Chris Kanaracus

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?