Next Generation Product Development Tools, Part 7

To cover the gap between this installment and my last entry:

  • In Parts 1 and 2, I covered the current low-end and hints of the future high-end potential for augmented reality.
  • In Parts 3 and 4, I touched upon both current mass production methods and emerging rapid manufacturing technology.
  • In Parts 5 and 6, I linked tangible to virtual (via “Digital Direct Manufacturing”) and discussed both virtually-created and physically-sampled three-dimensional objects.
  • In this section I’d like to do one thing: call attention to technology migration and the accelerating pace at which this migration is occurring.

    The Impact of Web 2.0 on Digital Tools

    For centuries publishing was something only publishing houses did. That all changed in the 1980’s when PC-enabled desktop publishing dramatically changed that industry and spawned new ones.

    It took much less time for CAD to migrate to the masses. The highend software tools and exotically expensive computing systems needed to run them in the 1990’s is now a distant memory to many of us, and completely unknown to new users who can run more capable applications on what most gamers would call mediocre machines.

    And today, as more applications move some or all of their functionality online, we’re beginning to see the most recent wave of tool migration. In some circumstances, it’s now no longer even necessary to run installed applications. From free email to 3D modeling, there’s probably at least one online application available or at some stage of development (and probably somewhere in this list of tools, if no where else).

    On top of increased availability, software is evolving in two ways that seems immediately apparent to me:

    1) It’s becoming much easier to use. Witness this “game”:

    2) It’s becoming increasingly collaborative, as this Wikipedia timelapse demonstrates:

    I just read that Toshiba has abandoned their HD-DVD format. And their stock went up. Knowing when to move on is important. That time is approaching for some of us in the product development community.

    One thought on “Next Generation Product Development Tools, Part 7

    1. Pingback: reBang weblog

    Comments are closed.