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Advances in technologies such as artificial intelligence, robotics, nanotechnology and biotechnology have the potential to disrupt the rules of the game for every industry.

Challengers with big dreams, new tools and a "can do" attitude are creating new sources of value, changing the face of competition and disrupting the foundations on which our industries and institutions are built.

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IBM seeks app developers to harness Watson

IBM's Watson should be on the "disruption radar" for almost every knowledge-based business on the planet.  Cognitive computing, a form of artificial intelligence, will in my view be a major game-changer for almost all knowledge-based businesses.

Having made an announcement in January that they were placing Watson's cognitive computing capabilities in the cloud they then opened the platform up to developers around the world.  This week's announcement goes one step further and heralds a specific program to encourage developers to build apps that will make Watson accessible on mobile phones.  

"The power of Watson in the palm of your hand is a game-changing proposition, so we're calling on mobile developers around the world to start building cognitive computing apps infused with Watson's intelligence," said Mike Rhodin, senior vice president of IBM Watson Group.

This is yet another step on IBM's path to making Watson ubiquitous as quickly as possible.  The tragedy, I suspect, is that very few businesses understand what's coming or will see the changes that Watson will bring in time to do anything about them.  That's despite the fact that Watson and IBM's plans for it have been very publicly canvassed for more than three years.  It's a great example of why it's so important for organisations to have a genuine capability for strategic foresight.

 

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