We have lately been reading a lot of headlines shouting ‘Disruption’, so what is it about.
The definition of disruption comes in several guises and definitions, for example ‘Forcible separation or division into parts’, ‘To throw into confusion or disorder’, ’An innovation that creates a new market and value network and eventually disrupts and replaces established market and network’, and on another tack you’ll find ‘Cell disruption’ a method in cell biology for releasing biological molecules from inside a cell.
Well, we are not going there, but
I think we are by now familiar with Climate Change disruption, and we have experienced the disruption to the auto industry from electrical vehicles, the taxi industry from Uber and Lyft in the USA, the advent of robotics, and many more, however, mostly it is the technology product disrupt that is so much part of innovation that we think of when looking to work out – or guess at may be more accurate – whatever it is that will happen next, what new invention will be a must-have for the millions.
For every one that succeeds a far greater number fails or fades away, take the BlackBerry phone disrupted by the iPhone almost to disappearance, the camera with 35mm film giving way to digital picture taking, and then to rub it in the digital camera falling victim to the phone camera, think Kodak and Polaroid. It must have been hard for such businesses producing well liked and perfectly good products to redirect their attention and efforts to new technology before going broke.
Such new technologies are disruptive and one imagines that the decision to go all out for an innovation versus sticking with a true and tried business must be quite a dilemma. But for all that such entails it is the job of an organization to make choices and perhaps with a bit of early spade work the potential to make the right choice, between the new riskier path and the defence of the current one, will increase.
For us as consumers it can also be a somewhat unknown outcome to choose a new device to serve us for more than just a season, when the new model or latest replacement can make our chosen device obsolescent, unpopular or incompatible with new operating systems. Some people change their phones whenever a new model appears, but that too can be disruptive because new accessories may be needed to perform the tasks they use the device for.
Disruption in its many forms seems to have become a fact of everyday life and we can undoubtedly look forward to yet more of the same, or rather an ever faster cycle of product life with sleeker and shinier objects seeking our attention and acceptance.
Keeping our feet on the ground and our money in the wallet whilst we consider our individual needs can be tough when children or friends tell you what you really cannot be without; fortunately Kapiti SeniorNet has some nice level headed people you can chat to about your plans for buying new or replacement equipment. That should keep disruption to a minimum, calm the nerves, and allow you to forget about those headlines for a while.