Innovation is encouraged at IFS Labs – the opportunity to run with an idea and to see where it leads.
David Andersson, Director of IFS Labs, shared six philosophies at our IFS World Conference, some of which we may be basing our future product on.
David told us that when creating software innovations for the future it is essential that you aren’t afraid to make mistakes. Only when you are willing to take risks are you able to go into previously unknown territory. That is the fundamental philosophy that keeps IFS Labs finding new technologies that put IFS users in the technological driving seat.
Here are some highlights of the six philosophies he shared:
1. Context Aware
In simple terms, Context-Aware is when you switch your computer on and instead of being greeted with a blank screen, the program actually opens up to your most likely activities.
To explain this concept David took us back in time to his first computer, a Commodore 64, and told us how much setting up and the operational procedure was required to get started. Then he told us that IFS Context-Aware would boil it down to simply turning on the power. With Context-Aware your computer would fire up all the necessary tools you regularly use and the files you use most frequently are ready to go.
2. Purpose Built
This theme is about optimum design and build. Using the example of a mobile phone, David explained that as manufacturers sought to make smaller and smaller phones they failed to correlate the physical limits of humans. Big fingers cannot operate minuscule keypads! IFS Labs appreciates that getting the balance right between style and usability is critical and makes certain that every design is built to human dimensions.
Many manufacturers make outlandish claims about their products and extend the boundaries of credibility beyond breaking point. IFS Labs stands by all it claims and as David said his team is proud of their work and believes the performance of everything the team develops speaks for itself.
4. Big Data
Gathering big data is becoming a major trend and IFS Labs is pioneering many exciting projects dedicated to enabling users to rationalize their data capture, so they are ideally placed to make full use of available data.
5. Augmented Reality
There is much talk and speculation about the potential of augmented reality. How can it be used effectively? Is business really able to benefit from this technology? David showed what IFS Labs are currently doing in the field of augmented reality and showed a number of ways augmented reality can be used to provide companies with a high-value new business asset.
This is an exciting new development that enables ideas to be continually developed. An original idea is put up where others can see it and if they want they are free to add any additional thoughts to it. This process can then be repeated and repeated making improvements to the original or at least taking it in another direction. Although Branching is very much in its infancy IFS Labs have recognized its potential and are currently engaged in finding ways to incorporate it into IFS thinking.
From this brief overview, it is plain to see that David and his team at IFS Labs are exploring many new and exciting developments that bring huge practical benefits IFS users.
Of course not all ideas bear immediate fruit, but once they are on the radar it is often the case that their full potential is realized when they are fused with another idea further down the line.
Thank you to Evan-Amos for the use of the commodore 64 image in this post, which is shared under a creative commons license.