Gaming, Opportunity, Convergence

So last week it was announced that the Ouya is going to have OnLive on it.  Frankly I expected to see a lot more on that, but it didn’t seem to make much of an impression.  Just another case of technology converging.

Of course the way I see this potential alliance is different.  It means a service that streams games (that don’t run on Android) is going to be playable on an open Android device.  Or in short, your $99 Ouya is going to let you play stuff that you’d normally need a far more powerful machine for.  Sure you have to pay for the service, but we’re talking quite a benefit here.

Yet, I saw a lot less speculation on it, so let me speculate more – and extend this.

The OnLive/Ouya deal represents a convergence of several trends – of Android, streaming, remote services, and more.  The end result is that something amazing and money-saving may well result from it.

This is not unusual – this is normal.  We’re actually used to the idea that things converge, that we can Twitter through our cell phones, that we can continue to read the same eBook on multiple devices, that we can access the web on everything.  We’re numb to the fact that this is really amazing – and in a way accelerating.

Yes, accelerating.  Thanks to modern technology and modern geekery, we’re retaining and retrieving information at an incredible rate, where people can play old Ultima games on their Nexus 7 tablet, or hack their Google TV to run Android.  More stuff is accessible to more people faster, and services and opportunities are constantly popping up.

Now ask yourself what it means for your career – it means that the convergence of technologies can be an opportunity, or the end of your business.

It may mean the solution to your career or your business may not lie in something new, but in the convergence of existing tools, or in a solution already out there and accessible you just didn’t look for.

It may mean you have to watch out for challenges to your career or your business, as a few bits of laterial thinking or a good partnership can change the business world overnight (just look at Android).  A few seemingly random combinations can shake up the economy.

Everything is combing together faster, with more opportunities, and with more unpredictability.  Forget the Singularity, things are pretty freaking unpredictable now.

Ultimately, this is a suggestion that for your career and economic understanding you two two things:

  • Pay attention to convergence and interaction of businesses, technologies, and services.  Opportunity and opposition lie in wait.
  • Start thinking about these interactions of business, technologies, and services.  You may invent something new and find it interacting unusually.  You may find a way to make solutions from what’s already out there or from combinations no one saw.

A game I’ve played now and then is to take any two news stories and asked how they relate or what they mean.  It’s a good way to prime yourself for the future … or for the way things are now in the world of technology.

– Steven Savage

Steven Savage is a Geek 2.0 writer, speaker, blogger, and job coach for professional and potentially professional geeks, fans, and otaku. He can be reached at