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Vice President for Information Technology in Education, 1,001 - 5,000 employees
For me, the most overhyped thing now is blockchain; I hear everybody talking about it as though it's a thing. I keep calling it the red pen argument because blockchain is just a means of recording things. It could be a red pen, it could be a black pen or it could be something else, so I don't know why everybody's jumping on blockchain apps.

The bigger need right now is finding all the technologies we can to improve self-service. A digital assistant should be more than just a tool to give you automated information. If you look at airlines, that's all they would do at first. But now the systems are smart enough to be predictive and they can try to help you be proactive about doing more things. That's the secret sauce, no matter what the buzzword is. But the problem I have is that those buzzwords, including blockchain, are being marketed and hyped to our employees. Just look at NFTs — so many people who know nothing about technology are spending money on something that doesn't exist. They’re spending money not on the item, but on the image of the item and how popular it's getting. When I have relatives mentioning NFTs, it makes me cringe. It’s just wrong.
CIO in Education, 1,001 - 5,000 employees
I was at a presentation in which they used the phrase, “converged endpoint management,” and that sounded too much like a buzzword to me. Then they said, "What about NextGen?" NextGen, ML and AI are overhyped words but the underlying technology probably still has utility when packaged and sold correctly, without buzzwords. That's what I want to implement because I'm looking for more self-service, more automation and process optimization. I shouldn't have people doing menial tasks if the computer can do that for them. And if I want to keep people, I should be giving them more interesting things to work on, or things that add more value for my organization.
CEO & Founder in Software, 11 - 50 employees
The hype comes into play when there are a finite number of viable use cases. The market is not ready, so exploitation is happening with hype. It’s the same thing for AI and ML. People will say they’re working on artificial intelligence when they're actually doing some sort of smart automation. There's no underlying machine learning model and there's no deep learning happening, it's just automation. People are confused between RPA, smart automation and AI, and it's not the fault of the market. Sometimes we are at fault because we fall into that hype rather than digging a little deeper to truly understand something. This happened seven or eight years ago with big data; everybody started hyping big data but it was still just data. The size may be bigger, but everything is big now. People started claiming they were dealing with predictive analytics, but what they were doing was basic analysis and retrospective analytics.

I always focus on the fundamentals of the technology in question. If you look at NFTs, the fundamentals support the technology’s viability. We were exploring NFT-based healthcare records, for example. You could have the NFT token supporting your healthcare records, so they are secure; you can take them with you anywhere and they're certified.

These technologies have merit; they will evolve and the market will self correct. As there are viable use cases, the market will settle on them. You see the same thing happening with Bitcoin, Ethereum or Dogecoin; they’re just alternate currencies. But now people have started realizing there's a need for an alternate currency that is not being controlled by a single government. So there are fringe cases for that, but the question is: How does it become stable and then accepted as a standard in the marketplace? That's TBD but the use cases are coming up. They are on the fringe for now but in a few years they’ll become mainstream.
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Vice President for Information Technology in Education, 1,001 - 5,000 employees

In a way, maybe what happened is that society is now stress testing a lot of these things faster than we would've in the past.


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