Live Blog: The Future of Mobility by Dr. Genevieve Bell

By Jen Lashua, Intel iQ Editor-in-Chief @runningjen September 12, 2013

“Seven billion futures, and you’re one of them”

Today at the Intel Developer Forum, Intel Futurist Dr. Genevieve Bell speaks on the way individual people live our lives and how this inspires and informs the development of future products and services at Intel

Why does Intel have an Anthropologist on staff?  As Director of Interaction and Experience Research in Intel Labs, Dr. Bell studies how humans use and buy technology, using insights to shape future technology the company develops. 

Intel’s Dr. Genevieve Bell, recently named by Forbes as one of the 25 Smartest Women on Twitter

Today’s keynote focuses on Intel’s research into people’s pain points and aspirations around mobility, together with a sneak peek into some of the technology research from Intel’s Labs focused on solving the remaining technical barriers to the next breakthroughs in mobility. The era of mobility is just beginning. When it comes to mobility, each person’s needs are unique and diverging. The winners will be the players that understand how to shape truly personal products and services that embrace the fact that there is not one mobile future, but seven billion mobile futures and counting, one for each human on earth.

Live Blog: Intel Futurist, Dr.Genevieve Bell (@feraldata), speaks on The Future of Mobility 

  • 10:04am: Historically in our industry, we focus on technology.  But there is more going on that we need to pay attention to – what people need, what they want, what frustrates them, what they desire.  For me, it’s about how we consider both technology and people equally.   Together, we make mobile more personal, more safe, and more fun!

  • 10:00am: Peter Biddle takes the stage and shows an example of a security app Intel is developing which gives you more visibility and control over your cookies, your data.  He shares an example of a demo using Facebook API and your exposure level, a dashboard of your privacy and what actions you can take to better protect your digital self.
  • 9:55am: Principal Engineer Lama Nachman joins Dr. Bell on the stage, shows how devices sense, understand, and act.  My phone can recognize the way I walk because it has seen me walk for a long time.  It can recognize me walking and can recognize if someone else takes my phone and walks away with it.  It knows this and locks the phone.
  • 9:48am: Mike Bell takes the stage and shows how he can power a processor using wine!  So why is this important? Low power doesn’t mean low performance.  If we want devices everywhere, we have to be thinking about new levels of power.  It’s possible to imagine a world with incredibly low power but great performance.  It will let us power constant sensing and constant communication – this is necessary to develop a truly mobile future.

  • 9:42am: Our research has taught us there are 4 Vital Mobile Insights: 1. People want technology that’s truly personal.  2. People want to be unburdened. There’s the moment in our lives where we’ve lost the thing to connect to the thing. Being mobile requires a lot of work, a lot of stuff.  Technology can literally weigh us down.  The average American has 18 passwords. 3. Technology needs to cooperate, keep us in the flow. People want technology to let them be in the moment. 4. Technology should help us be our best selves.  Better parents, friends, employees.  This is hugely important to people.

  • 9:36am: This is a design prototype developed in Intel Labs.  It’s a dual screen laptop which lets you be expressive – it presents one view to the user and a different view to those looking at the laptop.  It lets people be right here, right now.  Mobility is about the places you’re in, not just the journey in getting there. 

  • 9:31am: There are as many mobile futures as there are people on the planet – 7 million.  Intel is partnering with Barrow in India to bring mobile vendors to the streets.  We’re working on smart kiosks in Japan which offers you beverages based on who you are and what you’ve done, personal to you.

  • 9:28am: To enable the future of mobility, we have to think about the infrastructure and the cloud.  It’s about what they connect you to.  It’s about the places in which mobility happens.
  • 9:21am: In the next 24 hours, 3.7M mobile devices will have been sold on the planet.  That’s 43 every second of this keynote.  These devices require 1.9M cell towers in the US alone, transferring 5 exabytes of data.

  • 9:20am: What I do is study people and culture, getting a sense of what makes people tick and what they care about.  I bring that back to Intel to help shape the future of technology.
  • 9:18am: The keynote started a few minutes late; Dr Bell is taking the stage with a full house of attendees. 

More on IDF 2013 from iQ:



Watch Dr. Bell’s Full Keynote Address.