The Software As A Service (SAAS) paradigm continues to quickly evolve. Users with smartphones are getting daily upgrades on what they can do because the guts of the service exists as software somewhere on the Internet. This makes a big difference to teachers because more and more students are bringing their own devices to school. These devices are increasingly more capable and yet are becoming increasingly hard for teachers to keep up with. Here are some stories from the last few days showing how fast all this is moving now.
More power for the cloud
One of the most promising developments in computers is with artificial neural networks. These simulate how the human brain works and are showing that we can create artificial brains that work in similar ways. Last year Google did a project where they used a neural network and it learned how to recognize pictures of cats online just by looking at lots of pictures. The hardware last year cost $1 million but the architect of the project just published a paper showing how you can now do it for $20,000. How much will it cost next year? The year after that? How long before it’s in a cell phone? Not too long I would imagine.
Faster Connection When You Are Home
Wifi is getting a boost with the official release of the 802.11ac wifi standard. Supposedly this one will allow Gigabit connections although in real world conditions that would not be possible (read the article). I am concerned with all the interference in the wifi spectrum. It could be that optical transmission will be a better way to go as it will be much harder to interfere with.
Faster Connection When You Are Out
More and more phones are now able to use the so called 4G cell networks. I have a 4G phone but I don’t see that sort of signal too often. Even so, 3G is still good enough for what I do. Samsung made some waves a few days ago because they claimed demonstrating 5G tech. First, what they did was not 5G but it was some interesting technology that will help create next gen networks. It will be interesting to see what sorts of new communication tools will be created with faster networking speeds.