04 January 2016
As has become my tradition now for nigh-on a decade, I will first go back over last years' predictions, to see how well I called it (and keep me honest), then wax prophetic on what I think the new year has to offer us.
As per previous years, I'm giving myself either a +1 or a -1 based on a purely subjective and highly-biased evaluational criteria as to whether it actually happened (or in some cases at least started to happen before 31 Dec 2015 ended).
In 2015, I said:
"Big data", "Big data", "Big data". You will get sick of this phrase. I can't speak for everybody, but I can tell that the end is near for the term, because suddenly everybody is using the term, and they're using it to mean anything and everything. "Big data" is not just about doing deep data science analysis on petabytes of data; it's about any analysis (even simple reporting) on any collection of data (no matter how large or small) for any reason. +1
"Internet of Things". You will get sick of this phrase, too. This hasn't quite happened yet, but we're close. IoT is also starting to fray at the edges as a definition, and when that happens, it's immediately ripe for abuse and marketing. More importantly, though, lots of people are starting to realize that IoT is neither the huge "automatic win" that we all sort of assumed it would become. +1
"Internet of Medicine" or "Big Med". Well, nobody's started using the term yet, but certainly they're spending a lot of time in this space. They just don't like my term yet. I'm pouting over it, but it's still a -1.
"Tech bubble" becomes a "thing". Oh, this one came down to the very wire, but as December of 2015 rolled in, concerns over the actual valuations of the so-called "unicorns" were starting to show up, and lots of people were beginning to openly wonder if Silicon Valley and Wall Street were experiencing a falling-out. It took a hail-mary pass to do it, but I'm claiming my +1.
C# and Java will both make big announcements. C#6 shipped, but Java9 didn't, leaving me sort of confused as to how to score this one. However, I did say, "Those who care will take note, those who don’t, won’t. Really, we’re kind of past the point where either of those languages are going to be interesting to anyone who’s not already in that space", and frankly, if you weren't a C# or Java developer, you probably didn't even hear a whisper about either one (pro/shipping or con/not-shipping), either way. +1
Go is going to either take off, or crash and burn. The point of this one was that Go was reaching an inflection point, and while I think it's gathering some momentum (including with me personally--this new blog is using Go to do the site generation), I can't really tell if it reached an inflection point, so -1 to me.
Microsoft acquires Xamarin. Oh, as much as I thought (and still think) that it would be a great story for both sides, it didn't happen, and probably never will. sigh -1
Amazon just quietly keeps churning. I dunno how I would measure this one, but in some ways, as long as Amazon just keeps churning out new feature after new feature on AWS, and keeps making money selling stuff on their main web property--which they continue to do--then I think pretty much anything here qualifies as a +1. But it was kind of a lame prediction to begin with, now that I re-read it.
Google continues to throw sh*t against the wall, looking for their Next Big Thing. I believe the exact phrase I used was, "Expect a lot of announcements, a lot of "beta"s, and none of it with any kind of realistic or even well-planned business model behind it--including the Google Car." And, sure enough, we've heard a ton about the Google Car, among other initiatives, but nothing has stepped up as a product yet to even come close to acting as a second line of income for the firm. I call it an easy +1.
Web use on mobile devices decreases in favor of apps. In particular, I said,
This is going to happen whether the public wants it or not, because companies have figured out that it behooves them to have you "trapped" inside their app (where they can control all the content) rather than on their website. More and more websites are going to try and redirect you to inside their app, rather than allow you to casually browse on their site, because then they think they "own" your eyeballs. The only way this changes is if/when some firm gets crushed in the court of public opinion by doing something really stupid... and that won't happen in 2015. Wait for it in 2016.
Various "clickbait" sites were the ones I was thinking about in particular, and while some of them (I'm looking at you, Uberfacts) have floated a mobile app out there, the apps themselves don't seem to be lighting any fires in the mobile marketplaces. I'll talk more about this in a bit, but for now, I'm giving myself a -1.
Hipster "Uber for X" apps will be all the rage. Have you been to San Francisco recently? Talked to anybody on the street there? This one was a slam-dunk +1.
Mark Zuckerberg grows up a little. Zuckerberg will never admit it, but now that he's married and starting a family and all, he's starting to grow up. His paternity leave step was a big one, and signals that maybe he's finally ready to "adult" now. If so, he's in good company--it took Bill Gates getting married and having kids to come in out of the rain, too, and ever since that time, Bill's become a philanthropist of the highest order. +1
Larry Ellison buys a sports team. Didn't happen yet. -1
Perl makes one final gasp at relevancy, fails, and begins to decompose. Oh, this one is funny; how could I be so right, and so wrong at the same time? Wrong, because Perl 6 actually
finally shipped. And yet, so right because... well, how many people do you know using it? Or were even paying attention when it came out? Or.... Yeah. +1
Nine up, four down. Not bad.
That was the easy part. Now, on to the....
In no particular order:
Happy Holidays, and thanks for reading!
Last modified 04 January 2016