Cars connected to the Internet, five IP (Internet Protocol) devices linked to a network on a person's body, and an Internet gateway for every home were just some of the predictions made by a Cisco Systems executive at the ISPCON 2000 conference.
Duncan Mitchell, Cisco's UK operations director, said that the venture capital money quickly flowing through the market is proof of the reach of technology throughout the business economy worldwide. He was addressing conference attendees on the future of the Internet economy, which he termed the "e-co system".
"The dot-com culture has finally come to the UK and I firmly believe it's here to stay," Mitchell said.
In the new e-commerce system, businesses will have to redefine themselves and be forced to work with other companies in formal or informal partnerships, Mitchell said. He specifically cited the planned merger between America Online (AOL) and Time Warner as a great example of how businesses must now collaborate.
"I think [the AOL-Time Warner merger] is just a great move on their part. It gives us the ability to not only log on for content, but there is the instant gratification of that content being downloaded. That was a major move and it shows that one company can't do it on their own anymore," Mitchell said.
Among a number of predictions he made on the future of technology, Mitchell said that mobile Internetaccess will become more important than traditional PC connections.
"It's easy to look back in hindsight and laugh at some predictions made in the past, but I'm going to go out on a limb here and make some of my own," he said.
Mitchell said he believed the biggest changes in technology will be those that affect people personally. Specifically, he saw three major changes involving cars, homes, and IP devices for the body.
He did not give a time frame, but said that he believed all cars will be connected to the Internet and that "every home will have an Internet gateway".
"There will be five IP devices on every body," Mitchell said, although he could not say exactly what those devices would be. "All I can say is that they'll be linked somehow on a body network. Already, I have my mobile phone, my laptop, my personal organizer and my pager on me at all times."
He also predicted that networks would be running at 99.8T-bps by next year and that "voice will just be like any other application and may travel for free." http://www.cisco.com