Fast forward a few years. Imagine walking into your office in the morning and it recognizes that you are there through ID sensors in your employee badge. The room temperature is then automatically adjusted to your preference, and your colleagues are automatically alerted that you are available (if you so choose). No need to use a keyboard; you can simply talk to your computer or write your thoughts on a tablet that feeds the data into a personal or shared storage space. And when you do meet with a group, imagine a wall-sized display that can be viewed and updated by all participants. Resolution would be super-sharp, thanks to nanotechnology called microelectromechanical systems. In this week's cover story, senior writer Aaron Ricadela gives you a taste of what the office of the future will look like ("New Way To Work").
The story is part of InformationWeek's quest to find emerging technologies that could change the way you run your business. Innovative applications may come from the biotechnology space, as Ricadela recently reported ("IT At The Edge Of Science"). Also, there are a number of mind-blowing research initiatives aimed at making software more reliable, self-healing, and able to automatically adapt to changes in a system's environment. Next month, we'll show you how some researchers apply biological models and genetic algorithms to software design to take some of the human effort out of software maintenance.
In the broad intersection where science and technology meet, new ways of improving business processes will emerge. We'll keep you posted.