Safety systems will move from passive protection, such as airbags, to active systems that use radar and cameras to watch for danger. Car keys will be replaced by credit-card style systems Every new car will come with a computer-like screen mounted on the dash. It’ll display a navigation system that uses a global positioning satellite plus onboard DVDs to provide directions, maps, and information on hotels, hospitals, and restaurants. Nearly every car will have a Wi-Fi hookup that automatically provides the weather, news, and other information. Cars will increasingly collect data that can be shared with dealers, manufacturers, and even other vehicles. Voice commands will become far more common to help drivers juggle the proliferating functions in their cars. Brake-by-wire and accelerate-by-wire — where pressing the pedal sends an electronic signal rather than activating a physical connection to the engine or brakes — will become common. Increasingly, cars will be programmable.
Michael J. Karels offers an excellent overview of the various business models available.
[via Jayesh Matani] Business Week brings a story by the founder of the JBoss Group on how he recovered from his first failure:
I decided that the company had to turn a profit from the start. I had to keep revenues ahead of expenses at all times. I would not seek VC money this time — the environment wouldn’t allow it. Since I had already lost my savings, I had to make money on my venture from the get-go. I had no choice.
I found that working from the bottom up – building the product, going after the business is better than working from the top down — looking for the money first to fund a raw idea. For fledgling entrepreneurs, the lesson is clear: Focus on your core competencies, do the work yourself — don’t count on someone else. And keep your costs under control, so that revenues stay ahead of overhead.