More By This Author

Current Issue

Current Issue

Posted: April 03, 2014

The futurist: More of 162 future jobs

Big data, crafted houses, 3D printing

Thomas Frey

(Editor's note: This is the second of three parts. Read Part 1.)

Here are the next 55 future jobs. See the first 47.

Our Trillion-Sensor Future

Industry experts are now projecting that we will reach 1 trillion sensors in the world by 2024, and 100 trillion by 2036.

48. Sensor Inventors, Designers, and Engineers

49. Data Stream Organizers

50. Failure Point Assessors

51. Data Transmission Optimizers

52. System Anthropologists

53. Data Actuaries

54. Last Milers – People who specialize in bridging the gap between where the data fields end and the user communities begin.

3D Printing

3D printing was recently named by Goldman Sachs as one of eight technologies destined to creatively destroy how we do business. As an industry making inroads in thousands of different businesses simultaneously, former Wired Magazine editor Chris Anderson is famously quoted as saying, “3D printing will be bigger than the Internet.”

55. Automation Auditors – Assessing what parts, processes, and systems can be automated.

56. Material Experts

57. Design Engineers

58. Cost Estimators

59. 3Dimensionalists – Those with an innate ability to think three dimensionally.

60. 3D Printer “Ink” Developers

61. 3D Food Printer Chef

62. 3D Printed Clothing Fashion Designers, Material Specialists, and Stylists

63. Organ Agents – 3D printed organs are now being created and are in hot demand.

64. Manufacturing Process Consultants

65. Maintenance Guys

Internet of Things 

Seventy-five billion is the number of devices that Morgan Stanley has calculated will be connected to the Internet of Things by 2020. That’s 9.4 devices for every one of the 8 billion people that will be on earth in only seven years. IBM even created a starter kit to help people get started.

66. Locationists – People who specialize in adding the relevance of “place” to our global online communities.

67. Lifestyle Auditors

68. Efficiency Consultants

69. Ownership Network Setup Specialists – Everything people own over a certain value can be tagged, tracked, and monitored.

70. Augmented Reality Architects – Much like the paint we put on houses and the flavorings we add to food, the future will seem boring if our reality hasn’t been augmented in some way.

71. Avatar Relationship Managers – As the foibles of humanity enter the realm of autonomous, freethinking avatars, people will find it necessary to both manage and limit the often-dangerous relationships avatars get themselves into.

Big Data

Social media, blogs, web browsing, and company’s security systems are all generating enormous quantities of data, and it all needs to be stored, managed, analyzed, and protected.

72. Data Interface Mavens

73. Opportunity Spotters

74. Waste Data Managers – To insure data integrity in today’s fast evolving information storage industry, multiple redundancies have been built into the system. Achieving more streamline data storage in the future will require de-duplication specialists who can rid our data centers of needless copies and frivolous clutter.

75. Computer Personality Designers – Talking back and forth to a computer that has a machine-like voice is boring. But being able to download specific “personality packages” will add an entirely new level of engagement for basement-dwellers everywhere.

76. Data Hostage Specialists – Holding people as hostages is very messy. But holding data hostage is a less-risky crime that can be done remotely, and has the potential for far greater rewards.

77. Smart Contact App Developers – Smart contact lenses superimpose information on the wearer’s field of view.

Crypto Currencies & Alternative Financial Systems

In 2008 the entire world was beginning to panic as our global financial systems teetered ever so close to total meltdown. Major banks were either failing or near failure, and the entire house of cards seemed to be one 10-of-Clubs away from becoming a meaningless flat stack in the middle of the table. Out of this growing distrust of banks, Wall Street, and our entire monetary system, the age of crypto currencies was born.

78. Crypto Currency Bankers, Regulators, and Lawyers

79. Currency Adoption Specialists

80. Anonymity Advocates

81. Theft Recovery Specialists

82. Crypto Currency Theorists, Philosophers, and Evangelists

83. Currency Strategists

84. Monetary Exchange Interface Experts

85. Standards Developers

86. Lending Tacticians

87. Seed Capitalists – In the startup business world there is a huge gulf between initial concept and fundable prototypes. This dearth of funding options will require an entirely new profession.

88. Privacy Managers – If you think you have lost most of your privacy already, we’ve only scratched the surface. We are all terminally human, and as such, we do not always make good decisions. Striking the perfect privacy-transparency balance will require far more than amateur insights. It will require privacy professionals.

89. Secondary Opportunity Maximizers

Micro Grid Conversion

Over the coming years, the national electric grid will be broken into a series of micro grids. Details here.

90. Micro Grid Strategists

91. Mass Energy Storage Developers – We are still terrible at storing energy from one day to the next. Once mass energy storage systems are developed, micro grids become infinitely more viable.

92. System Transitionists

93. Power Conversion Specialists

94. Efficiency Optimizers

95. Benefits Translators

96. Secondary Opportunity Expansionists

97. Backlash Minimizers

Contour Crafted Houses

Many people think of contour crafting as 3D printing for houses, but Professor Behrokh Khoshnevis from the University of Southern California sees it as much more. In addition to it’s ability to print an entire house in less than a day, it can be used to eliminate slums, help rebuild areas after a natural disasters, and even build large buildings and luxury homes with custom architectural features that can be changed with only a few clicks of a mouse. Details here.

98. Construction Material Designers

99. Structural Engineers

100. Site Planners

101. Setup Teams

102. Tear-Down Teams

103. Cleanup Teams

Thomas Frey is the executive director and senior futurist at the DaVinci Institute and currently Google’s top-rated futurist speaker.  At the Institute, he has developed original research studies, enabling him to speak on unusual topics, translating trends into unique opportunities. Tom continually pushes the envelope of understanding, creating fascinating images of the world to come.  His talks on futurist topics have captivated people ranging from high level of government officials to executives in Fortune 500 companies including NASA, IBM, AT&T, Hewlett-Packard, Unilever, GE, Blackmont Capital, Lucent Technologies, First Data, Boeing, Ford Motor Company, Qwest, Allied Signal, Hunter Douglas, Direct TV, Capital One, National Association of Federal Credit Unions, STAMATS, Bell Canada, American Chemical Society, Times of India, Leaders in Dubai, and many more. Before launching the DaVinci Institute, Tom spent 15 years at IBM as an engineer and designer where he received over 270 awards, more than any other IBM engineer.

Enjoy this article? Sign up to get ColoradoBiz Exclusives. The opinions expressed in this article are solely that of the author and do not represent ColoradoBiz magazine. Comments on articles will be removed if they include personal attacks.

Readers Respond

Commenting is not available in this channel entry.

ColoradoBiz TV

Loading the player ...

Featured Video