I came across three articles today that discussed a similar theme.
Business Insider, Why Grilled Cheese Is The Next Frontier Of Technology
It’s the same thing with McDonald’s. Each burger is really a piece of technology: each ingredient has to be thought through in terms of how it can be procured, sliced and diced, frozen, taken to restaurants all over the world, and then assembled on demand quickly and effortlessly, and how it fits into the whole chain and the company’s offering and brand.
Forbes, The Rise of Developeronomics
This means that if you are in apparently more fundamental professions — perhaps you are a baker with a small business — you are effectively useless, not because bread isn’t important, but because surviving in the bread business is now a matter of having developers on your side who can help you win in a game that Yelp, Groupon and other software companies are running to their advantage. If your bakery doesn’t have an iPhone app, it will soon be at the mercy of outfits like Yelp.
Peter Thiel/Marc Andreesen, Stanford Startup Class Notes
Peter Thiel: Your claim is that software is eating the world. Tell us how you see that unfolding over the next decade.
Marc Andreessen: There are three versions of the hypothesis: the weak, strong, and strongest version.
The basic, weak form is that software is eating the tech/computer industry. The value of computers is increasingly software, not hardware. The move to cloud computing is illustrative. There’s been a shift to high volume, low cost models where software controls. It’s very different from the old model.
The strong form is that software is eating many other industries that have not been subject to rapid technological change. Take newspapers, for example. The newspaper industry has been pretty much the same, technologically, for about 500 years! There had been no significant technological disruption since the 15thcentury. And then boom! The digital transformation happens, and the industry frantically has to try and cope with the change.
The strongest form is that, as a consequence of all this, Silicon Valley type software companies will end up eating everything. The kinds of companies we build in the Valley will rule pretty much every industry. These companies have software at their very core. They know how to develop software. They know the economics of software. They make engineering the priority. And that’s why they’ll win.
It’ll be interesting to see how this unfolds over the next 10-20 years.