Have Your Machines Contact Mine

The social Net (2.0) might be for humans today, but it won’t be for long. Machines will take over the Internet as we know it!  It will be called Machine Net 3.0.  The good news,  we will still be integral to the social graph, but, in time, there will be more semi-conductors talking to each other than humans. What does that mean to you.  Let us peak for a moment into the not so far future!

You’ve seen the movie, “The Matrix” and you're thinking - that won't happen to us in the Social Age - its not possible.   Further, it sounds like science fiction.  However, if you look at the facts and realize that companies are making machines (cars, hardware, refrigerators, you name it) that connect to other machines via the internet, you begin to realize its not science fiction at all.

For example, imagine if your refrigerator could automatically beam  data over the internet to your local food retailer (aka Walmart) signaling that you need food; or your car sends a message to your local dealer noting that its time for a servi;  or when the you have studied for the exam and are ready to take it?  Seem far fetched - but i don't think so.  Let's see why.    This data could be used by the auto manufacturer to make better cars. Your trips to food markets more productive (if at all) and your class room attendance with proctors for test taking would become all together irrelevant.

How about all those calls to service your air conditiong and heating units, let alone letting your internet or cable tv provider that your service is down.   You get the point. The machine net (internet 3.0)  would accomplish the same things we do now, but without relying on us for such menial and routinized tasks much when we are already so busy! Imagine the benefits - we could really spend our time doing the things we love  - both at business and at home.

How far along are we - you ask.   Much further than you can imagine.  Semiconductors have become so ubiquitous that forces described by Metcalfe’s and Reed’s Laws are inevitable. Based on these Laws about exponential connectivity growth, I predict exponential growth in machine to machine connections - e.g. a new machine social graph if you might.  For example:  We have reached the tipping point where the sum of these machine connections will create more economic value than the value of each individual node. In 2008, for example, approximately 20 semiconductors were manufactured for every person on the planet. These semiconductors are turning ordinary products like refrigerators and toasters into intelligent machines that have the potential of connecting to their brother and sister nodes over the internet.

By sharing data between machines across the internet – and taking people out of the loop of the low value added activities– social networking will find its ultimate place in the world amongst people doing the things that matters to them while letter the machines do the rest. The machine social graph will grow increasingly powerful because machines can communicate at the speed of electrons while people have to sleep and eat and enter their comments via a keyboard. With so much electronics potential embedded in everything we use, the potential interactions between machines goes well beyond the human imagination. Other nodal combinations will form.

Why stop at the current homogeneous situation where toasters only talk to toasters and refrigerators only talk to refrigerators. What will this electronic genetics soup create once all of the machines can talk to each other?  Its time for us to recognize that having your peep talk to mine is important for things that matter to humans.  But for things that don't - leave it to the emerging social graph of machines!

Guest Blogger-Douglas Malech

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