Holding Myself Accountable – How 2022 in Tech Will Shape a Turbulent 2023

And now, here are nine new predictions for which I will hold myself accountable, for 2023:

Back to centralization (somewhat) in a decentralized world. While the decentralization train is picking up speed (more on that later), this year will begin to see a bit of regression back to IT centralization for many organizations. IT once held control over technology investments, only to relinquish it to the lines of business over the last few years.

Well, IT is back, baby! Based on the aforementioned lack of developers and the drive towards ecosystems (more below), while lines of business will still push towards outcome-driven buying decisions, central IT organizations will again wield power over shared systems. So, what types of systems will the CIO lean towards?

Bye-bye, best-of-breed. Hello, software ecosystems! Highly technical worker shortages will only escalate in the coming years making it challenging for CIOs to buy best-of-breed technology for every need. Gone are the days of weaving together a myriad of solutions. The ecosystem that provides ease of use, frictionless buying, security, interoperability, and a library of third-party add-ons will win out.

Even the home automation space – once a frenetic battleground of competitors vying for customer loyalty based on features and usability – will come together and take off in 2023 with the introduction of common standards like Matter and Thread. However, one shouldn’t read “ecosystem” to mean rigid. Just the opposite, in fact…

Applications become composable. Just because a vendor offers a well-integrated set of products and capabilities, it doesn’t mean they will be rigid and irreplaceable — just the opposite. These ecosystems need to be plug-and-play, allowing third-party vendors (often called ISVs) to build solutions on top of creating composable business applications.

These solutions can be purchased when needed and moved in and out at little cost to the buyer. And instead of generic, most of the value will be gained through the industry intellectual property.

For instance, instead of a composable app that provides the capability to extract and normalize data, it will be specifically geared towards understanding banking, healthcare, or other industry standard use cases. This will also empower the less-technical bunch since they won’t need to rely on IT, but rather a modular architecture empowering their every move. Speaking of the less-technical crowd…

The Citizen Developer hath risen! …they’re more technical than most want to admit! There will always be a need for professional developers but the “rise of the citizen developer” has reached a point where we should begin talking about Citizen Developer 2.0. Those who fall into this new category have increasingly more technical skills by the day, combined with a willingness to get their hands dirty.

As projections place a 4:1 citizen-to-pro-developer mix by the end of 2023, expect organizations to push more down to these types that may not have been considered just a few years ago. Advanced and affordable AI will help.

The AI explains the AI. With increased ubiquity and budget no longer a barrier to entry, AI technologies have seen an increased level of scrutiny – from both governments and consumers. While “explainable AI” was a nice-to-have, this year it’s a must. Increasingly, governments around the world are imposing regulations on AI opacity, essentially meaning that certain AI models that govern important decisions need to be able to explain how precisely that decision was made. Luckily, there’s a way to more easily explain those decisions.

Natural language AI for insights and development. 2022 was probably the fastest year on record related to the democratization of AI. It seemed like each week a new player hit the street placing the power of advanced artificial intelligence in the hands of anyone with an email address.

Look no further than DALL-E 2, Stable Diffusion, Midjourney, and others allowing anyone with a keyboard (or voice) to generate bespoke objects like images, video, and music via natural language prompts.

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