Tech Concepts to Know for 2006
I came across this article on Popular Mechanics entitled 15 New Tech Concepts You'll Need to Know In 2006. It serves as a great basic guide for emerging technologies but I wanted to add a few concepts it left out.
High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection (HDCP): Think of it as DRM for your display. Microsoft will be supporting this technology into the upcoming Vista operating system and others may follow as well. This is how ArsTechnica describes HDCP:
Developed by Intel, the technology provides a two-part cryptographic scheme to control video transmission and delivery at the very end of the video display process. Technically speaking, HDCP is content protection, not copy protection. Restrictions on time-shifting, copying, sharing, etc., will all be handled by the likes of cable/satellite boxes, DRM schemes, and the like. HDCP, in short, simply guarantees that whatever content restrictions are in place are enforced by authenticating both the transmitter and the receiver.
Extensible Firmware Interface (EFI): As seen on the new Intel Macs, EFI is an upgraded BIOS specification as created by Intel. EFI allows for hardware drivers to remain in the firmware and operate independently of operating system. The EFI can also detect and select operating systems, eliminating the need for a separate boot loader.
Simple Sharing Extensions (SSE): While this was created in 2005, Microsoft hopes for SSE to gain momentum and compete with the RSS standard in 2006. SSE extends the RSS 2.0 specification from unidirectional to bidirectional information flows. Microsoft even released it under the Creative Commons license, the same license covering RSS 2.0.
SSE allows you to replicate any set of independent items (for example, calendar entries, lists of contacts, list of favorites, blogrolls) using simple RSS semantics. If you can publish your data as an RSS feed, the simple addition of SSE will allow you to replicate your data to any other application that implements the SSE specification.