It’s been quite some time since I made predictions on this blog (8+ years). But it’s always been a fun exercise to do. It doesn’t matter if you’re right or wrong. If you’re wrong, you can always say it just isn’t time yet and punt another year or 5.
Some of the past predictions can be found here.
This year I am going to bucket them into 3 main categories.
Humanity / Business / Technology
- We continue our love/hate relationship with science. Much of the hate aspect is driven by fear/poor science education, some driven by identity/culture politics. I don’t see us escaping this cycle in 2023 or any time soon. Sadly this is going to have a negative impact on innovation as we make things like stem cells harder to study, and defund potential ways to eradicate viruses like covid-19 as the political will is no longer there, and it shifts into endemic status.
- 2023 Is going to be wild for international politics. War in Ukraine isn’t ending soon (I hope I’m wrong on this), Ukraine is growing in its role as a pawn between Russia and the West.
- We keep wasting time and attention on D-list celebrities fighting with other D-list celebrities. (This continues to be a big source of social media traffic. See Tate/Musk/others)
- We normalize covid as a regular thing. Shift has gone from “stop the world, are they going to make it” to “did they get boosted/vaxxed? they did, ok great see them next week” and “oh they didn’t get boosted, f-ing sucks they are in for a bad ride/understood the risks (or didn’t but we stopped sympathizing).”
- Every business is a digital business in 2023. Whether you like it or not, that ship has sailed. If you aren’t tracking your data and synthesizing it in some way, you’re dead and just don’t know it yet. Landscaper? need marketing data. Bakery? need inventory forecasting + marketing data. Dentist? Need all kinds of software.
- AI starts to edge its way into enterprise first. At the most basic levels the most repetitive tasks start getting automated. Tools start to emerge in no-code format to let people train their very own models.
- AI tools for every day business make a big leap. Tools like zapier and make evolve a bit to understand the data they are moving around more.
- Pre-made reporting options emerge for everyday business tools. Don’t make me figure out SQL queries for my salesforce or square data. Let me buy one-time use templates for my business needs. Someone might end up making the equivalent to themeforest for these reports.
- Startups start integrating AI into all their products. We’re already seeing companies like Notion do it. Expect to see it in a ton of products trying to add an “aha” moment to their product experience. Most of these will rely on openAI’s APIs as they are the most readily available and affordable.
- Cloud providers will rush to compete with OpenAI. AWS/Azure/GoogleCloud/Oracle will all pump out more AI libraries and spend time on promoting them.
- Someone will release a creative suite built on top of Adobe tools using stable diffusion and other LLMs that gets bought by Adobe 6 months later. This will be the first mid-size exit in the space.
- Lots of innovations that come out this year will look like gimmicks. Until they don’t. Eventually you’ll come to expect generative AI features in all your day to day apps. It will become table stakes by 2024.
- We’re entering a new era of personalization.
- UX will become ever more adaptive and intelligent. This is going to make interfaces have to improve faster than other parts of apps.
- Natural language interfaces will emerge. Tell the SaaS tool you want it to do something, or connect to something and it will know.
- Better knowledgebase tools become needed.
I wrote most of this in early January 2023, but as I hit publish in mid-february, much of this already feels outdated. I suspect that feeling will be pervasive as things rapidly accelerate this year.
What do you think will be the biggest changes in 2023?