TRENDS

INVEST IN INNOVATION

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ALPORA INVESTMENT CYCLE

The ALPORA ‘ Invest in Innovation ‘ defines innovation trends not from a technological perspective, but from the perspective of a stock investor. The blockchain technology for example, is already technologically ready for use but is not yet relevant for a traditional equity investor. An investment would resemble a gamble, since it is not yet clear which of the different Blockchain startups will still exist in 5 years.

Gambling Zone – Innovation trends that are at the beginning. Investments here are like a gamble, as no exact prediction can be made. Investing at this stage is more important for venture capital or simply for gamers.

Boom Zone – In this area, the innovations and innovation trends have their full impact and are very interesting for the equity investors. Investments make sense when the ‘ Valley of Tears ‘ (Gartner Hype Cycle) is passed through.

Stagnation Zone – The innovation trends have their maximum effect behind them and are no longer considered new. For investors, they therefore no longer offer great potential.

The ALPORA ‘Invest in Innovation’ Cycle presents the different current innovations trends based on their position in the cycle. A detailed description of each trend and the different areas of application can be found in the respective sections:

BLOCKCHAIN

Blockchain technology was originally developed for the cryptographic currency Bitcoin. The functional principle of blockchain is based on assigning a timestamp to information in the form of blocks and adding them to the existing blockchain. This continuous chain of information on all past transactions is shared publicly and is thus tamper-proof (Yli-Huumo et al. 2016).

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DRONES

Drones, also called unmanned aerial vehicles, are aircraft which operate without a human crew on board. They are either controlled from the ground or perform actions autonomously. They range in size from a few millimeters to several meters. Most drones are equipped with a camera, although increasingly smaller and lighter sensors are making new applications possible (Dharmawan et al. 2016; Klemas 2015). Furthermore, they also benefit from advances in robotics, artificial intelligence, and autonomous driving.

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BIG DATA

Big data refers to the use of forecast analyses or other advanced methods of utilizing data. Challenges include the analysis, searching, collection, storage, visualization, transmission and security of the data. In many cases, big data is characterized using the “5 Vs”: Variety refers to the different kinds of data, velocity to the creation rate and processing speed, volume to the large amount of data, veracity to the reliability of the data, and value addresses its economic use.

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AUGMENTED REALTY

Augmented reality describes a collection of technologies with which virtual information is seamlessly projected into the real world in order to augment natural perception. This is often visual information, such as advanced data or overlays for certain objects. However, acoustic information is possible as well.

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3D-PRINTING

3D printing is the process of producing complex three-dimensional shapes from digital images. The materials used range from plastic and metal to living cells, and are generally deposited in layers to create the desired shape. 3D printing is frequently used for the development of prototypes due to the high degree of flexibility and the relatively low costs.

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CYBERSECURITY

The aim of cybersecurity is to protect devices, networks, programs, and data against unauthorized access, tampering, and destruction. This challenge has already existed for a long time but is growing in importance because an increasing number of devices with a growing range of functions are being networked as part of the Internet of Things and intelligent vehicles.

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ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE

The term artificial intelligence was coined in 1956 by Dr. John McCarthy during a conference on the possibility of making intelligent machines.  According to McCarthy, artificial intelligence is the ability of a machine to perform functions that would be considered intelligent if performed by a human. Some examples of these functions are reasoning, learning, natural language, and decision-making (Lopes et al. 2009).

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QUANTUM COMPUTERS

Quantum computers have the potential to revolutionize computer science.  They use quantum mechanical properties to perform calculations and are many times faster than conventional computers. 

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INTERNET OF THINGS

The central idea of the internet of things is to connect everyday objects to the internet and thus enable comprehensive and autonomous communication.  Devices should be seamlessly integrated into everyday life and help to increase quality of life.  Applications range from traffic and health to agriculture.

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NANODEVICES

Nanodevices is an umbrella term for very small devices in the nanometer range.  Often, the structures performing the simplest functions consist of individual molecules or atoms.

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INTELLIGENT VEHICLES

Advances in energy storage, computing power, sensors, communications bandwidth, algorithm efficiency, and a few other areas have led to the development of intelligent vehicles.  These detect and react automatically to obstacles, communicate with each other and with the infrastructure, support the driver in difficult situations or even drive completely autonomously. 

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