2023, you prepared us well.

Professional life at my employer is a unique experience in the most uneventful times, and almost unbelievably dense with experience when things are fast. And 2023 has been fast, in no small part due due to:
  1. the world trying its best to avoid calamity
  2. new tech storming on the scene 
  3. a brand new team
Calamities abound, but the near singular focus with tech has been Generative AI.  

As Mustafa Suleyman says - it can't be stopped, it has to be stopped. It really is the first time we need to decide what we don't do with the technology. I'm an optimist about it and the future it brings - and it's one of my responsibilities to ensure we use it in a responsible way.

Prompt: "redraw me after talking about generative AI for years" I aspire to age that well, but as many already know it's more about attitude maximizing a bit of luck! 

Much like the picture above, my prediction for Generative AI will be that it starts to find a home as a function inside existing products to reduce time and toil. Rather than sitting independently like some text, image or video generator viral app. Top areas it will change our lives:
  • IDEs (Code Dev)
  • Graphical Consoles
  • Conversational Experiences
  • Office Productivity
  • Career/Resume Sites
  • Education Delivery
The list is endless, but I intentionally omitted chat bots. Let's not do that. 

If there was ever an example of a fad that was chased by too many (guilty!), didn't create lasting value, and chewed up years of effort - it's the bot you immediately minimize or consciously ignore with your gaze as you load a page. What about on mobile? Yeah, it's almost muscle memory, isn't it? :)

Controversial opinion... Every website should start like Google Search and carefully justify why it needs to be more complex. Three steps simplified by Gen AI:
  • Take the user query
  • Determine the answer
  • Deliver the answer
Check out the Search Generative Experience - you can opt in at labs.google.com - to see how bringing the conversation to the user path is more effective than forcing the user to divert to a bot.

Lastly in my corner of the world, this year fundamentally changed how we assemble and tackle the market. A team of intrepid Cloudies at the end of the earth created and nurtured an identity over the last three years to better serve our users. Just over a year ago we earned the right to become our own locally managed business.

A year as the new Head of Tech, in collaboration with our new Head of Cloud, Industry Tech & Sales leads, we opened a lot of new doors & engaged in near countless rewarding conversations. 

Along with it came the growing pains of a new org as well - but one I'm happy to say everyone rose to the challenge of. 

I'm very excited about 2024, and hope you are as well!


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