Fiorina Looks to the Future at Comdex

LAS VEGAS -- Advising the sold-out crowd that "we could all benefit from a little perspective," Hewlett-Packard Co. Hewlett-Packard Co. president and CEO Carly Fiorina kicked off her keynote at Comdex Fall with a history lesson.

Fiorina compared today's technology industry to the transition from the Dark Ages to the Renaissance in its constant and pervasive promotion of new ideas and technology. "We are at the beginning of a digital renaissance," Fiorina proclaimed.

Fiorina went on to describe her vision of the Internet as a complete convergence of all devices, all the time, always on. She described the Internet as a "populist tool" and gave examples of its applications for personal creativity, business, mobility, and ultimately, the creation of a "do it for me" world.

Fiorina spoke on HP's 100 cameras program, in which 100 random people worldwide were given digital cameras and told to just take pictures, as an example of putting people first in the development of the new Internet. She also spoke on e-services, where net services would be made available a la carte and on demand, rather than as part of a monolithic suite with a set fee. Fiorina envisioned markets that operate in real time, in which the first to market with a revolutionary technology will, by necessity, force the rest of the market to follow. Fiorina described the shift in ideas of community, time, and commuincation that occur with truly mobile technology. "In a mobile culture, always on is the norm," she said. Fiorina also briefly discussed Bluetooth Bluetooth and its upcoming implementation in HP's OmniBook laptops and printers.

The "do it for me" culture was described by Fiorina as the convergence of technology and the Internet to deliver services any time and on any device, but with all devices Internet-enabled and only as "smart" as they need to be. By way of example, Fiorina described a prototype of a printer ink cartridge fitted with a chip that knows when it is out of ink, notifies the user, and places an order online for another cartridge.

At that point, Fiorina announced an HP partnership with Nokia, which will eventually allow any user with a Nokia phone to approach an HP printer and print anything that lives on the Web.

Throughout her address, Fiorina stressed the need for open standards and pointed out that HP held back from the Bluetooth consortium until the use of open standards was formalized.

Finally, Fiorina called for the technology empowerment of the 4 billion people on the planet who are currently without access to technology and the Internet. - Isaac Slepner Isaac Slepner

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.

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