What’s Next?

“I have one more question.”
Dennis the Menace

What is the next big thing? By big, I mean, BIG big! We’ve enjoyed the wheel for a while now, electricity has been great, airplanes and rockets are still pretty unbelievable and the internet, well, has changed everything but that was so last year – what is NEXT?

Perhaps humans will be able to communicate through thought or create a spaceship that discovers new galaxies or develop a cure for any of the following: terminal illness, world hunger or even hate. OR, more likely, continue to have a ton of “little BIG” things like game-changing websites like Facebook or a new hyper-useful “tools” like smart phones or iPads.

If we are out of truly BIG things, we must embrace the ongoing beauty of the small ones. The conversation has shifted to the more practicable next thing. It is very cool that we are able to text from country-to-country, raise funds for all kinds of projects through sites like Kickstarter, tweet directly to your favorite celebrity or record tv shows to watch later on your super-sized flat screen!

All these things are still absolutely incredible. Sure, they have become common place but that doesn’t mean they aren’t worth being in awe of, especially if the last truly BIG thing has come and gone. Just yesterday my phone alerted me to North Korea‘s nuclear test plan – the news is anything but great, but the fact is that instead of waking up to read the newspaper or waiting for the evening news report, I instantly and effortlessly digest critical information.

Assuming I survive North Korea, fingers crossed, I assume that I’ll live to discover the next “BIGish” thing. It might be incredibly small and easy to forget, like the underutilized but incredibly powerful site LinkedIN, but perhaps not. What if Twitter meets Youtube and I am soon watching video blurbs instead of reading them? What if my iPad becomes fold-able to a pocket-sized shape that converts two useful devices into one? What if????

I don’t know what is next but my guess is that it will seem small but in practicality, it will be big. Companies like IDEO are constantly innovating, and writers like Scott Kirsner are brilliantly covering it, and step by step, our world is moving forward. Innovation is the key to each next big, medium or small thing. Just make sure to keep asking questions, keep searching for answers and always be prepared to enjoy whatever it is that’s next…


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