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Unit 45 - Emerging Technologies - Pearson Higher Nationals in Computing

Dex Consulting - ET & the Future


Acknowledgements: This assignment has been possible due to the valuable efforts of my professors, who have worked tirelessly to ensure that I gained the ample knowledge required to frame this report. I would like to express my gratitude to them for giving me the opportunity to take up such an interesting topic for research, which I believe, has helped me learn a lot about the emerging technologies and how they can be useful. Finally, I would like to thank my friends and family who encouraged me and made it possible for me to stay motivated and complete the report within the given time.

Question 1: Assess what Emerging Technologies are necessary and appropriate when designing software applications for the future.

a. Assess formats, characteristics and trends of Emerging Technologies.

Answer: Emerging technologies are those technologies that are gaining prominence in the recent years, and these technologies are usually still in their developmental phase, and thus their practical applications are still largely unrealised (Newman, et al., 2012).
ETs are thereby characterised by high uncertainty and costs, as they are still under constant development. Furthermore, the network effect is also applicable to them, as the development and use of one ET consequently affects another existing technology significantly. Furthermore, ETs being in their developmental phase have still not been fully investigated, either due to funding restrictions, or other developmental challenges.

A few trends of emerging technologies are robotics (using machines for everyday tasks), artificial intelligence (use of machines to simulate human intelligence), and biotechnology (the technological application of biology and living beings).

b. Explore the advantages and disadvantages of Emerging Technology.

Answer: Advantages: • Increase efficiency as well as safety of the different processes associated with them (Kirkwood and Price, 2013)

• Can improve healthcare processes and facilities

• Help in conserving the environment

Disadvantages: • Dependence on these technologies might make it difficult for people to function without them (Anderson, et al., 2014)

• Can be expensive

• Automation creates and increases unemployment


c. Evaluate the ability of Emerging Technology to disrupt the status quo throughout industries, markets, user adoption and established practices.

Answer: ETs and disruption of status quo in markets, industries and user adoption: Emerging technologies can often be said to be disruptive in nature, since these developments have the capacity to disrupt the status quo of the existing markets and industries, while affecting the currently established practices and trends of user adoption (Redlich-Amirav and Higginbottom, 2014). For example, artificial intelligence can be utilised for computing delivery drones to drop off packages, thereby making the concept of regular logistics functions obsolete.

d. Review various forms of Emerging Technologies, focusing on their relevance to software development and computing.

Answer: Three trends related to software and computing fields: Three trends that can be mentioned with respect to software and computing fields are -

Artificial intelligence,which refers to the simulation of near-human intelligence by machines (Russell and Norvig, 2016).

Blockchain technology,which is the decentralised and distributed ledger responsible for recording the provenance of any digital assets (Yli-Huumo, et al., 2016).

Robotic process automation,which refers to the use of software together with AI and machine learning abilities to perform repeated tasks in high volumes (Willcocks, Lacity and Craig, 2017).

e. Evaluate Emerging Technologies and justify their use when designing software applications for the future.

Answer: Some of the ETs that can be used for designing new software applications are artificial intelligence, machine learning, and internet of things technology.

Question 2: Research state-of-the-art Emerging Technologies and choose one you believe will have significant impact in the future.

a. Evaluate your report findings and research.

Answer: Introduction to IoT and future impacts: The Internet of Things (IoT) is an emerging technology that has the power to impact the future in many ways. It is essentially a combination of software, hardware, computing and algorithms, which implies that it is highly intelligent in nature, thereby making it possible to provide a smart experience to the users (Gubbi, et al., 2016). IoT brings together the objects that one uses in their daily life by improving connectivity through an intelligent networking system. This further improves compatibility and network accessibility. Also, this ET makes it possible to allow a larger range of devices to stay connected as opposed to traditional internet connectivity that has many limitations.


b. Review a specific industry and end user group that will be the most influenced by this Emerging Technology.

Answer: Most suited industry to IoT and end-user: The industries that are most suited for IoT technologyare consumer electronics, transportation, computing and engineering, healthcare, and manufacturing (I. Lee and K. Lee, 2015). The end users for this emerging technology range from industrialists to policy makers, and caregivers to personal users.

For instance, Cisco, an American organisation, utilises IoT networking for developing highly secure, automated and robust connectivity solutions for industrial networking systems. The organisation also has a highly developed architectural solution for protecting the IoT implementation against the possible threats (Cisco, 2019).

c. Evaluate the benefits, features, advantages and disadvantages of this Emerging Technology.

Answer: Advantages: • Machine-to-machine (M2M) communication is greatly improved by IoT due to the high transparency and efficiency (Atzori, Iera and Morabito, 2010).

• It allows for better automation since the physical objects can be connected and controlled digitally without human intervention.

• IoT also aids in the monitoring of the required processes or objects, such as air quality, printer ink refills, and expiration dates of edibles.

• Time and money are the two most valuable entities saved by the IoT technology since it increases efficiency.

Disadvantages: • There is a lack of compatibility standards when it comes to the manufacturing of the devices.

• With technology comes the scope of complexity, and this is further augmented with the IoT being implemented into the daily functions.

• There is a major risk of the loss of privacy due to the large quantities of data being transmitted online (Weber, 2010). Although encryption functions are available, there is always the threat of data theft and misuse.

• The increase in the automation of various processes due to improved connectivity will also affect the availability of jobs, especially those involved with manual labour.

d. Show how Emerging Technologies can converge with existing technologies or replace them.


Older or existing technology

New or emerging technology

Flash drives, manual accounts of data

Cloud computing and big data analytics will render the concept of physical data storage devices obsolete (Manogaran, Thota and Kumar, 2016)

Skype and other video calling apps

IoT technology can utilise a telepresence robot for remote face to face meetings (Turcu and Gaitan, 2012)

GPS systems

AI technology will work in parallel to the existing GPS technology and improve navigation systems (Zheng, et al., 2012)

Question 3: Discuss the current state and future impact of your chosen Emerging Technology.

a. Organise your research and findings.

Answer: Current state of IoT and its future impact: At present, IoT technology has been noted to bring about major changes in the way people work, travel and interact in their daily lives. The infrastructure in many homes and offices are becoming interconnected, making it easier for people to stay in touch with each other. In the future, it is expected that there will be a convergence between blockchain, AI, fog computing and IoT (Novo, 2018). The technology will gain more priority and determine new business models and value propositions.

b. Contrast the benefits, features, advantages and disadvantages of your chosen Emerging Technology.


Feature of other ETs

Feature of IoT

Machine learning helps overcome situations and make decisions based on thorough observations and knowledge.

These observations form the basis of the functioning as carried out through IoT.

AI deals mostly with analysis, evaluation and conclusion.

More concerned with connectivity and measurement

Big data deals with the collection of massive amounts of data from devices and online platforms.

IoT utilises this very data to enhance connectivity and facilitate smoother functioning.


c. Relate how your chosen Emerging Technologies can converge with existing technologies or replace them.

Answer: IoT and the convergence with existing technologies: With the emergence of IoT as a mainstream technology, it would be possible to replace the existing systems in many arenas. For instance,there will be no longer the need for caregivers to manually check the vitals of the patients as IoT devices will monitor and send relevant data.Smart cars would be better at avoiding traffic jams as opposed to traditional cars by selecting alternative routes.

d. Develop a report of your research and findings.

Answer: Research findings: As can be deduced from the research that has been conducted above, the Internet of Things technology has been gaining momentum at a very rapid pace.There is virtually no arena of life that has been left untouched by the technology, and users are increasing their dependence on smart devices with every passing day. It would thus be no surprise if all the everyday tasks from arranging for breakfast to reaching the workplace would be automated in the near future.

e. Defend your choice of Emerging Technology in relation to your belief it will have the most impact on software application design and development in the future.

Answer: Impact of IoT on software application designing and development in the future

• The focus of software application will shift from having a user-friendly interface to one that facilitates more effective integration of smart devices.

• Security of the applications will assume priority.

• Applications will be so designed as to reduce the need for human intervention as much as possible.

Question 4: Evaluate the political, economic and social factors which play a role in the competition between Emerging Technologies and their success or failure in the future.

a. Evaluate your report findings and research.

Answer: Political, social and economic factors affecting the failure and success for ETs

Political factors: The successful implementation of emerging technologies is dependent largely on the political spectra since it is the legal proceedings and the trade rules that dictate the capacity to utilise these systems on an extensive scale. There are also various trends that keep changing in terms of employment and social legislations, as well as consumer-protection and environmental policies, which have the capacity to affect the future of the emerging technologies (Newman, et al., 2012). Furthermore, the political environment of any country is viable to frequent changes, which makes it all the more difficult for emerging technologies to succeed, given the fact that most of these systems are aimed at improved communication and connectivity measures, which might get limited due to certain diplomatic implications.

Economic factors: The rate of inflation as well as unemployment have major roles to play when it comes to the successful implementation of emerging technologies. Most of these technologies are aimed at coping with the costs of labour supply by improving automation processes, which might lead to a greater incidence of unemployment for a massive section of the population. Furthermore, in most economies, the level of disposable income of the people is increasing steadily, which implies that the demand for these technologies in case of the intended end-users would likely increase (Newman, et al., 2012).

Social factors: The tendency to be dependent more on technology and less on manual work is increasing, thereby making the market more favourable to emerging technologies such as IoT and AI. A major chunk of the young population has a lifestyle that in fact requires them to be dependent on technology to save time, energy and money while maintaining efficiency (Newman, et al., 2012). This indicates that the future for emerging technologies is quite likely a positive one.


b. Critique the benefits, features, advantages and disadvantages of your chosen Emerging Technology.

Answer: Conclusion: From this report, it can be concluded that the most noteworthy benefit that IoT will bring is that of enhancing connectivity between not only the smart devices but also individuals. It will make life a lot easier by automating the processes. However, due to the large amount of data being stored online, there will always be the issue of privacy and data theft, and appropriate measures need to be taken to ensure safety.

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