18 Jan 2017 3:06 PM

In 1998, Kodak had 170,000 employees and sold 88% of all photographic paper worldwide. By 2001- just 3 years later - you would never take pictures on paper film again.

Uber is an app that is ranked the world’s biggest taxi company today - and it doesn’t own any taxis. Airbnb is the world’s biggest hotel company - and it doesn’t own any properties.

In 2016 Artificial Intelligence shocked the world when Google’s AlphaGo computer programme beat Human Go Champion Lee Se Dol - 10 years earlier than expected.

IBM Watson – An Artificial Intelligence computer system that can now solve legal and medical queries. This development will impact hugely on employment numbers in these sectors.

In 2018 the first self driving cars will appear in public. Subject to Artificial Intelligence becoming capable to take over a motorist’s decision making process in the case of unexpected calamities such as a child running in front of a car, the entire car industry will be disrupted.  You will be able to phone for a car; it will show up at your location and drive you to your destination.  You will not need to park it, you only pay for the driven distance and you could be reading or working during your journey.  If this model becomes reality there will be about 90% fewer cars on the road.  Former parking places could be transferred into parks.  1.2 million people die each year in car accidents worldwide.  Again, if this model becomes reality, insurance companies will be a major casualty as without accidents, premiums will be greatly reduced.

Health is another field that will benefit from technology. Your phone will be able to take your retina scan, your blood sample and be able to identify most diseases. Hopefully, everyone on the planet will have access to world class medicine at low or reasonable cost.

The above innovations could or will greatly improve the quality of life and our longevity.

But, the major downside is the potential cost in employment numbers that these disruptions will cause.