All posts by Bradley

About Bradley

Head of Innovation at Endava, although all the views in this blog are purely mine and not necessarily those of Endava.

Host your own blog for under $43bn

It’s totally understandable that people want to host their own content and blog. Obviously I do it myself on this site.

It’s possible to do it for under $43bn. I recently moved hosting provider to Siteground and it cost around £80 for the first year. #justsaying

Financial Times front page 24 April 2022
Elon Musk has (almost) bought Twitter for $43bn

Why it’s important to behave the same in real and virtual worlds

One of my highlights over the last year was interviewing Guy Kawasaki on our Tech Reimagined podcast. (You can listen here).

This week, on his own podcast show, Guy interviewed Jane McGonigal who had some inspired thoughts about parenting in the dawn of real and gaming worlds (use the word metaverse if you promise not to roll your eyes). Full podcast is here.

I think the most important thing from a young age, especially as we move forward with whether it’s going to be the Metaverse, or whatever relationship we’ll have with virtual worlds, we don’t want kids to think of them as separate from their real lives or their real identities.

If we think of virtual worlds as escapist or not real, our behavior is worse in those worlds, right? We bully each other. We do behaviors that we would not consider ethical in real life, and when we develop strengths and skills in those games and virtual worlds, if we think the games aren’t real life, then we’re less likely to bring them to our real lives.

Maybe this is the reason why some people become so negative on Twitter & other social networks – maybe it’s because they see those environment so different to the real world?

On that interesting insight, Guy then questioned the natural next step if you behave the same in virtual and real worlds – and that’s in person shooting games (think “Call of Duty”). Jane had a great answer to this too:

It’s never content. It’s never the content of the game. It’s always the verbs of the game. What are the verbs. What is your child doing? From my previous book, SuperBetter, I have some questions. 

It’s like, “How do you talk to your kids about games to help them understand the connection to their real strengths and real abilities so that you can understand?” So, you just ask your son, “What does it take to be good at Call of Duty? Or, what have you gotten better at? Or, what’s the hardest thing you’ve accomplished in this gaming group and how did you achieve it? What did that take? 

“Start that conversation. It could be “I can stay calm under pressure. I am really good at being flexible in the moment if I have to change my strategy. I’m really adaptive. I’m a good communicator. I’m talking to my team. I’m always asking the right questions, so nobody feels like they’re out of the strategy.”

“Whatever it is, it’s all of those verbs and it’s not the pictures on the screen is not what is transferrable.” 

 

Microsoft 2022 prediction update

Microsoft buys Activision for $69BN
Microsoft buys Activision for $69BN

Two weeks ago I suggested the metaverse will happen this year, probably in a 3D environment rather than a VR/AR one.

I also said that 2022 would see Microsoft really consolidate themselves to become the Netflix of computer gaming using a cloud-based platform rather than a traditional games console.

The official Microsoft press release said “This acquisition will accelerate the growth in Microsoft’s gaming business across mobile, PC, console and cloud and will provide building blocks for the metaverse.

This acquisition could be a super exciting development for the whole technology industry.

2022 Technology & Business Predictions

Every year I try to predict what lies  for the year ahead, and then I mark them a year later! It’s a particularly difficult  timeframe because a year is reasonably short term in technology, but we’re lucky to work in such a fast paced industry.

You can see how I faired last year, 2021, and keep working back, all the way back to 2010.

1. 3D, rather than the metaverse

Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/45501032@N00/3726589535/in/photostream/
Try finding a supermarket website that can present a 2D version of this. Credit on Flickr

There are times when the current user experience for the web is adequate. For example, filling in a form. There’s little wrong with the fields appearing in our web browser and us typing in the answers.

There are other situations where it would be preferable to have a 3D environment. For example, when buying physical products online. Imagine if we were in a 3D experience where we could see adjacent items, or interact with them, or compare different types of the item together. The current page-based, 2D experience for shopping is a little too flat compared to our real world.

Meta, Facebook’s parent company, believes that the future of these 3D environments will be using a headset to see an AR (Augmented Reality) or VR (Virtual Reality) world, a bit like SecondLife. Personally, I think that’s several years ahead of us for most people. There are good enough 3D environments that can be ported from video games into day-to-day internet activities though. Continue reading 2022 Technology & Business Predictions

How were my 2021 predictions?

Every year I try to predict some of the technology trends and predictions for the year ahead. And then at the end of the year, I mark the original predictions. (You can see how well I performed last year and work backwards).

In the next few days, I’ll work on the predictions for 2022. This will be quite a challenge considering none of us even know what everyday life will look like in the next few weeks!!

1. Microsoft Teams becomes the next operating system

Microsoft Teams is a fully-fledged platform, supporting apps from Microsoft (of course) and a myriad of third parties. I had predicted we’d be using Teams for email and banking apps by the end of the year but that proved a little too ambitious.

Maybe the term ‘operating system’ is also ambitious because this year Microsoft announced the latest version of its operating system, Windows 11. If it’s any consolation, several of the screenshots on the latest Windows 11 page on Microsoft.com show Teams in various guises. Continue reading How were my 2021 predictions?

Learning from the past

There’s so much to learn and question (is there a difference?) from this graph & statement:

  1. Is it over yet?
  2. Will it carry on going up? (aka glass half full)
  3. Is it now going to crash down again? (aka glass half empty)
  4. Bubble?
  5. What are the influences?
  6. Is this localised to the US?
  7. Is the line skewed by just a few companies?
  8. Is it wise to sell off during a crash, or hold your nerve? (aka what would you do differently?)

 

A year in lockdown

Jeff Bezos with parcels
During lockdown, we’ve ordered so much from Amazon that I sometimes expect Jeff Bezos to personally deliver a parcel to thank us

12 March 2020 was the last time I worked outside my home. Except for a couple of days in the Endava office in October/ November (more on that later), I’ve been working from home since.

Sometimes it’s been too easy to mentally distance ourselves from the reason why we’re in lockdown. Personally, it feels that each time I’ve got into the new rhythm of working from home, I’ve had a dreadful phone call that someone I know has been moved to a ventilator in hospital or passed away.

Here are some of the highs and lows of the last year. Continue reading A year in lockdown

Book review: Human Kind

Rather than a dystopian future, in the UK were clapped in the street during Coronavirus. Source: Damien Walmsley on Flickr

When my children were younger, if they heard bad news I would reassure them that there are many more good people in the world than bad people. This is one of the reasons we have so few police compared to the population.

Human Kind, written by Rutger Bregman in Dutch and then translated to English, takes this view a few steps further.

The book explains, in lavish and often repetitive detail, how we are naturally a good-natured species, and it’s the media that makes everything sound bad.

Although we are good natured in our actions, it seems there’s a part of our brain that is attracted to and remembers bad news over good news.

Newspaper and news website headlines are an obvious example. Continue reading Book review: Human Kind

Book review: Radical Uncertainty

How did NASA send space probe Messenger on a successful space mission that took 6.5 years just to arrive, yet we can’t predict traffic in an hour’s time?

The fact this book was finished before Coronavirus was astonishing timing because the virus gave everyone in the world this very topic: radical uncertainty.

Radical Uncertainty was written by John Kay, a professor and director of several public companies, and Mervin King, the governor of the Bank of England from 2003 to 2013 – including the 2008/9 financial crisis.

I absolutely loved this book. Whilst writing this review I flicked through the book and ended up reading several pages again.

The book’s premise is simple: how can NASA send probes into space, due to arrive at their destinations several years in the future, and everything goes according to perfect plan, arriving at a specific point in space right on the predicted time; whilst we fail to predict tomorrow’s stock price or today’s traffic? The answer is that when humans are involved, we experience radical uncertainty. Continue reading Book review: Radical Uncertainty