Today, the only constant is change…
And the rate of change is increasing.
You either disrupt yourself, or someone else will. For any company, sitting still equals death.
I believe that we are now experiencing only a tiny fraction of the rate of disruptive change we will see over the next 10 years.
Though it’s hard to even fathom, think about this for a second:
Exponential technologies don’t exist in a vacuum.
They interact with each other. They augment each other. They accelerate each other.
When they do, the emerging impact is enormous.
It’s a tsunami of change, and it’s impossible to predict what it “looks” or “feels” like.
To give you a better picture of the accelerating change coming our way, I want to define four key “Moments of Convergence” where I believe we will see the most change.
Moment 1: First, we have the continued acceleration of those exponential technologies riding on top of Moore’s law: Infinite Computing, Networks & Sensors, Artificial Intelligence, Robotics, Digital Manufacturing and Synthetic Biology. Each of these technologies enable exponential entrepreneurs to build products that can positively impact the lives of a billion+ people.
Moment 2: Second, we will have “Combined Interface” moments. In other words, these technologies will converge at various interfaces. For example, the intersection of Networks, A.I. and 3D printing will soon allow anyone to verbally describe their desires and have them physically materialize. Imagine having an A.I. listening to you describe what you’d like to see created, then turn it into a design file that is uploaded to the cloud, 3D printed and delivered later that day to your doorstep. Every one of us, with or without skills, becomes a master designer and manufacturer, in much the same way that Microsoft Word makes us all perfect spellers.
Moment 3: This decade, the number of digitally connected people on Earth will grow from 2 billion (in 2010) to at least 5 billion (by 2020), perhaps as many as 7 billion (if Google and Facebook have their way). These additional 3 billion+ new minds entering the global economy are now fully empowered with dematerialized, demonetized and democratized technologies ranging from Google to 3D printing and SynBio. They now have access to the technologies once coveted by the largest corporations and government labs… so what will they create? What will they build?
Moment 4: Historically, the rate of innovation on Earth has increased as peopled moved out of the countryside and concentrated in cities, where they exchanged and built on each other’s ideas. Soon, the global mind of 5 billion+ connected people will drive a frenzy of rapid iteration. Innovation cycles on new products will go from years to months to weeks. How will the intellectual property system that so many linear-thinking companies rely on, possibly handle this rate of change? It won’t; it will likely fail.
It is these four moments of disruptive convergence that will be driving the tsunami of change ahead of all of us.
Our challenge as entrepreneurs is that we are evolutionarily predisposed to be local and linear thinkers. (Our brains evolved hundreds of thousands of years ago, when our life where best described as local and linear.)
The only option we have to surf atop the tsunami, rather than be crushed by it, is constant and continuous education and emersion in these exponential technologies to understand what you can use to reinvent yourself and your business every year.
This is why I’ve committed, for 25 years, to coach a group of entrepreneurs through my Abundance 360 program, and share with them what I see as the most powerful technology going from deceptive to disruptive growth phases each year. (BTW, if you’re interested in learning more, you can apply here).
This is also why Singularity University was created. If you’ve got a second, check out this incredible trailer for a new documentary on the Founding of Singularity University, which includes Ray Kurzweil, Larry Page, Stephen Hawking and Sir Martin Reese. See it here on its Indiegogo page.
While some see this increasing rate of change as scary, I find it exhilarating. Now, more so than ever before, we can make our grandest dreams come true.