Kamal Singh (M0IOV) gave a passionate and thought provoking presentation entitled “The future and growth of Amateur Radio” in which he proposed that, as a hobby group, we are no longer relevant.
He blamed our lack of relevancy, not on the internet, but on the 3rd Industrial Revolution; the move to Digital. He highlighted that digital technology, the introduction of cheap and reliable SMT technology and as a result of these the internet, had removed our importance or relevancy as we lost the one thing we had; (non-commercial) world communications.
He then proposed a way for us to regain relevancy, visibility and appeal.
He stated that we are entering the 4th Industrial Revolution where, critically, the ‘wireless’ inter-connectivity of everything is a fundamental underlying architecture. He suggested that we should focus on solving real, 4th Industrial Revolution problems that Businesses, Industry and the Government care about. We should do this by innovation and integration rather than invention and we should work with Business, Universities and professional bodies to share and lead this innovation.
Importantly, we need to change our mindset of what constitutes ‘Radio’ and ‘Amateur Radio’ and think more in terms of wireless connectivity while broadening our skills into these digital and IoT areas.
In encouraging us to align ‘Amateur Radio’ with the targets of the 4th Industrial Revolution he pointed to a foresight study called the “Future of Manufacturing 2050” (for the UK…there are similar forward looking documents from other countries) available from the governments Business Innovation and Skills unit.
Kamal is keen to hear from Hams with ideas and I think this would make an interesting topic within our local clubs. Perhaps we can brainstorm some creative opportunities for our hobby to address contemporary issues and respond Kamal’s challenge?
What do you think about Kamal’s view on our hobby?