New Favorite iPhone App

I’m on my fourth or fifth iPhone.   It can be easy to forget, but I started with iPods, then iPhones and tablets.   Now, I can’t imagine work or play without one.   This post is being written, in draft at least, over coffee on an iPhone.

I use a variety of apps to augment work or bring work along.   Cloud based computing is still the most useful recent evolution, but augmented reality is coming.    We see small changes in apps, hinting at the possibilities and an app I bought a few days ago, if you enjoy landscape or want to identify wild plants, is surprisingly accurate.

Plantsnap” basically uses a photo to identify a plant.   The explanation is a little more complex, but I can see the potential evolution of this kind of technology and how much it might improve life.   I already use bar codes to add foods to a diet app or shop.   I scan pages to import text and use digital or electronic signatures weekly, but identifying views or sounds around us has so much potential!   I read a recent article about the use of Google Glass in commercial uses.   No, this isn’t the original version.  This appears to be an enhanced or enterprise version of the product.  Think about the way smart-phones translate language, recognize shapes, color, music, fingerprints and even faces.  We’re on the verge of very big changes in the way technology is being used.  Over the past few years, I’ve become ridiculously good at working anywhere, but I’m faster and….well, augmented.   We all are! Social networking is just a small part of the connection.  We carry the best ideas available, a reference device for almost any subject, language translation and  even a live map!  The change is incredible for me.  I grew up without a personal computer.  My first system was a PC XT in early 1986.  It came with a basic operating system, contact manager, dialup capability (early version of internet) I didn’t use for 6 months and an amber text-based screen.   Thinking about how much things changed for me and my generation, I just don’t think most people understand how much we can do and how “enhanced” we’ve become.


What comes next?  As much as I enjoy writing, I wonder how blogs might change in 10 more years.  We’re moving so quickly toward a social media world, I expect connections to be visual and video, not written.  Look at Twitter’s recent move toward streaming content and the popularity of picture or video sharing.   My sons are far less likely to write a blog, but they do stream gaming video and use Snapchat or Instagram frequently.   The convenience is changing the way we think and communicate.   I don’t think we will ever move backward, but understanding and proactively adapting to the change is the only way to be competitive.   After AR, AI is the next huge change.  I don’t think we’ll be waiting long.  In ten years, think about the way we might adapt to artificial intelligence in our devices or connections.  Simple versions, like suggestions for shopping or automated appraisals, are in my day already.  When I look at a property, I routinely look through 3 or 4 versions of online valuation.  I can imagine changes to contracting, home inspection, real estate sales…..every part of my business could change.  Will I be necessary?  How many agents will be necessary?   What about physical office space?  Do we still see clients face to face?  I sometimes show homes with Facetime or Skype now and well over 90% of my contracts are electronic.    Old filing cabinets are slowly being emptied and I use electronic or scanned versions of almost everything.

On a recent trip, this sign was posted on a park path adjoining private residences.  I found the double-meaning, intentional or not, interesting.   Cliff paths usually have a great view.

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