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2019: The Year of Witty Protest

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So yesterday, I gave you the top ten trends for 2019 from British Airways’ Business Life magazine. The article also discussed a range of other trends that are noteworthy, so here’s a quick summary of the other things to expect in 2019.

2019: The Year of the People

This is the year of witty protest.

What do we want? Nobody knows. When do we want it? Depends what it is.

So read one of many homemade placards at the London People’s March in October, one of the largest ever.

People are becoming active again, and resisting the political will, replacing this with the people’s will. A good example is in Sweden where Apple tried to buy the Stockholm Kungstradgarden. The company wanted to build a flagship designer store that would run the length of the park.

According to Angela Ahrendts, Senior Vice President of Apple Retail: “we don’t call them stores any more. We call them town squares, because they’re gathering places where everyone is welcome.”

The Swedes said pungkulor to that and got the plans shelved.

Another example is Kendall Jenner giving a police officer a can of Coke during a protest. The people didn’t like this message, and raged against the machine. The message is that brands, companies and politics cannot take away the people’s right to speak.

2019: TechSpeak

Here are five of the latest technology developments:


The idea of GAN is that two artificial intelligence (AI) systems challenge each other to a dual and, in so doing, get to learn lots along the way and improve themselves. It’s already been used to create images and music, and means that AI gets imagination.


Everything to do with quantum computing gets hotter this year. A qubit is neither 1 or 0 but both at the same time in this new computer generation, thanks to what’s called ‘superpositioning’. Sound complicated? Well, add in ‘entanglement’ and ‘tunnelling’ and suddenly plain old blockchain stuff sounds pretty straight forward.


The idea is that robots work with humans to let the humans do the work that requires ideas and imagination, whilst the robot does all the dirty work. That’s why it’s a cobot, co-operating with the humans to do things better.


I always though IPA was a beer, but it’s now linking automated processes that use robotics to machine learning, so that robots can learn on the job.


As we move to the internet of things, all the things you own will have a digital partner or twin. Gartner predicts that billions of things will have digital twins in the near future but, then again, Gartner predict a lot of stuff that doesn’t come true.

Anyways, that’s the tech for this year made up-to-the-minute. What’s next?

Well, there’s then a spattering of other articles in Business Life whose titles tell you all you need to know about what follows:

Driverless cars and robots with legs

QR codes bouncing back

VR slowly growing whilst AR is booming

5G is coming

I guess you get the idea. Anyways, tomorrow, I’ll bring it closer to home and look specifically at finance and technology developments for 2019.


Chris Skinner Author Avatar

Chris M Skinner

Chris Skinner is best known as an independent commentator on the financial markets through his blog,, as author of the bestselling book Digital Bank, and Chair of the European networking forum the Financial Services Club. He has been voted one of the most influential people in banking by The Financial Brand (as well as one of the best blogs), a FinTech Titan (Next Bank), one of the Fintech Leaders you need to follow (City AM, Deluxe and Jax Finance), as well as one of the Top 40 most influential people in financial technology by the Wall Street Journal's Financial News. To learn more click here...

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