For more opinion, see the StratVantage
News Summary and The
TrendSpot. Also, check out our Prediction
Tracker, which tracks the predictions I've made in the past.
In addition, you can see some of the stuff
I said back in the early days of the Internet.
Here's an oldie but a goodie from 2000.
Cheaper Bandwidth . . .
. . . is just around the corner. According to
Upside, "By the end of , Nortel Networks Corp. (NT) plans
to begin selling a system that will send a staggering 1.6 trillion
bits per second through a single fiber. That's equivalent to more
than 20 million simultaneous phone calls." What will the world
look like when bandwidth cost approaches zero? We may find out
a good deal sooner than we thought.
At the Delphi Corporate Portals conference in
2000, Wired editor Kevin Kelly related a story of an early 20th
century Sears product: the home motor. This portable but expensive
device could power all manner of labor saving devices. Kelly asserted
that people of that time couldn't imagine what was to come: motors
disappeared into the fabric of the home support systems. It's
certainly true. Rather than a single, expensive, valuable resource
that needs to be conserved and maximized, domestic motors today
are in everything and we never think about them. Try taking an
inventory of all the motors in your house. Did you remember to
count any mechanical clocks?
Kelly's point is that computing will disappear
into the background just as so many other technologies have. I
believe communications bandwidth will go the same way. Remember
when you hesitated to make a long distance call because it was
so expensive? (If you don't, you were probably born later than
the 70s.) Now you can call for free on your wireless phone. Kelly
described the cost curve that modern technology has created: one
that approaches zero. A correlary to his thinking is my assertion
that, "On the Internet, everything devolves to free." (See my
presentation from the conference for more on that subject, here.
Email me if you want the PowerPoint file.
So, what will you do with unlimited bandwidth?
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