Phil for Humanity Phil for Humanity
A Guide for the Survival of Humankind and Helping the World, Society, and Yourself.

Software Plateau

When was the last time that you discovered software doing something new? By new, I mean a software application could perform a task that computers were never able to do before.

If you are like me, then it has been well over a decade.

Recently, major computer hardware improvements has brought software that needs a lot more computational capabilities to the average person. Voice recognition software is a good example. Voice recognition software has existed for well over two decades to my knowledge and maybe even longer. Yet, cellphone users are only recently started to commonly use voice recognition software.

Many people were surprised with an artificial intelligence computer software, called Watson, was quickly capable of automatically providing answers from questions in plain English (natural language). However anyone studying artificial intelligence research would know that software for parsing natural human languages has been under development for at least two to three decades, and already had several working prototypes. The only novelty is the speed/performance and better accuracy of the computers.

So, this brings us back to the question of when new computer capabilities were last introduced? And the answer is not recently. All new software, that I am aware of, is based on previously existing software or a variation of existing software. While this may be a surprise to many people, it is not a surprise to software engineers.

Thus, computer software has reached a technical plateau. In my opinion, the next great leap in software will require a huge leap in hardware capabilities while using a gigantic amount of raw data.. but that is only a guess.

by Phil for Humanity
on 20120327

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