Next Conference 2015: How we will live

… or how technical innovations and digital trends will change our live in the future.

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“The NEXT is the event for those who actively participate in shaping the digital transformation.” 

Hamburg. 2 days. Schmidt’s Tivoli Theatre and 15 other cool venues. 1.300 attendees all doing digital business. Many great speeches. A lot of inspiration. Some geek stuff. Many interesting discussions. And the Reeperbahn Festival right in front of the conference location.

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The program and the speakers were well chosen, the organization was great and I could take a lot of inspiration and knowledge with me. As the whole program is online with videos and slides, I just picked my favourites and would recommend to browse yourself the program and check out the videos.

#1 – Perform or Perish: Key Consumer Trends Reshaping Digital in 2016 and Beyond!
David Mattin, TrendWatching’s Head of Trends and Insights, did the opening speech. He showed us a very useful framework on how to apply trends in order to find out how these trends can change consumers expectations.

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#2 – How will we live?
Anab Jain, Founder & Director of Superflux, reflected on how the world will be and what future we’re building for our children. It was indeed the most emotional speech as it started with our own mortality and ended with the simple fact that we are also responsible for what is happening in the world. And every single one of us can change things. Her advice: Advocate data ownership for consumers. Make friends with climate scientists – and spread their knowledge. Challenge politicians. Hack company roadmaps. Make alternate versions. Gossip about the potential. And that’s just a start. Use creativity and innovation to leverage power.

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# 3 – Mobility Disruption
Richard van Hooijdonk, Trendwatcher, became part of the Internet of Things by being RFID’d. He talked about the change that is coming, when the world and human beings will be totally connected. Imagine that your fridge makes the groceries online by itself and your self-driving car takes you to the store to pick them up before it drives you home. At this is just the beginning …

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# 4 – The Extra Hour – How Piloted Driving Transforms Behaviour and Business
Nils Wollny, Head of Digital Business at Audi, showed us how piloted driving will transform the future and what its benefits, effects, aftermaths and opportunities will be. In addition he introduced us to the Audi piloted driving tests which are running since 2009. First there was “Shelley” and currently “Robby” is doing 220 km/h on a race track without a driver. In the lunch break we had the possibility to experience piloted driving on a race track doing 240 km/h via the Oculus Rift.

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# 5 – Exponential Organizations – The New Normal
Yuri van Geest, Founding CEO of the Singularity University Netherlands, talked about the companies of the future. As software eats the world, every company becomes a software company”. We’ve digitised marketing, and now supply and manufacturing. We’re becoming fully digital organisations. Thus it won’t be possible to run or hide from digital transformation.

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# 6 – The Ongoing Reinvention of Shopping
Laurent Haug, Anthemis / MKS, Investor gave an overview of high level trends on how we will shop. Beacons connect the online and offline shopping experience. And in 5 years there will be no e-commerce, only commerce.

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# 7 – Knowing Things – How Consumers Relate to the Internet of Things
Alexandra Deschamps-Sonsino, Designer at Designswarm talked about knowing how we should live with things. She designs connected things and her advice is: Keep the end user perspective in mind. Build IoT for human beings, not for robots! Make it useful and valuable for ALL stakeholders. Be aware which product is getting connected to which software. “The idea of connected everything is horsesh***”

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# 8 – The Thing with Things – Dilemmas. A Talk about The IoT Design Manifesto
Just because we can connect something, doesn’t mean we should connect it. Marcel Schouwenaar from The Incredible Machine and his colleagues have developed an IoT Design Manifesto. A guideline for responsible design in the connected world.

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# 9 – Beyond Reality
Everything will become digital. And once we’ve digitised everything, we’ll start exploring that through Virtual Reality tools. On the first day of the conference everyone got a VR cardboard and within his speech Robert Overweg, Director Concept & Strategy showed us the current virtual reality work from his company Beyond Sports. They are working on digitizing sports matches, allowing you to explore recreations of the match in VR headsets.

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# 10 – Sample Day – Innovative Technologies and Applications
At the Millerntor-Stadion, the stadium where the football-team from 1. FC St. Pauli has his home, we could experience some new technologies and applications. Beside some interesting presentations, i.a. IBM on Watson, my favourite gadget was “The Dash” – CES Best of Innovation winner. Wireless smart earphones that will change the meaning of wearables.

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Conclusion
I have attended this year many events and I must say that the Next Conference was the best organized and inspirational one. To make it short: It was great and I would definitely go there again!

 

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