Fast Forward 2005

The future is something to get excited about again. Here’s our look at the surprising people, ideas, and trends that will change how we work and live in 2005.

What’s Next?

Readers ask us that question all the time. And we ask the people we write about the same thing. This first incarnation of the Fast Forward list is an attempt to capture what comes out of those conversations, to look around the corner and offer some insight into the ideas, people, and trends that will affect the way we work and live in 2005.


Perhaps the most thrilling part of putting together a list of 101 emerging ideas is seeing the innovation and optimism bubbling up in so many arenas, from packaged goods to biotech to security. In a stagnant business climate, it’s easy to get dejected about whether there are, in fact, any big ideas left to pursue. An Internet may not come along every year to transform our lives, but not every mountain has to be Everest. We can still get pretty excited about an advance in shopping-cart technology (see No. 74).

At the heart of each of the 101 items on the list lies an idea. It may be convenience or transparency or a new way to think about strategy. We think you’ll see ideas that will help you change the way you work or how your company does business. In some cases, you may just be able to adopt the concept itself. In others, you may be inspired by the soul of it.

Predicting the future, even the near future, is a perilous endeavor in our lightning-round business culture. Some of these items are sure things and others are long-shot gambles. That’s by design. For as you consider what you want to accomplish next year, the key to success may be a healthy mix of both.

  1. Acting on Intuition
  2. MBA Lite
  3. Over There — and Staying
  4. Ready to Play Hardball?
  5. Beyond the Talking Toaster
  6. Green Giant
  7. Tiered work spaces
  8. Max Barry’s Company
  9. Conference room cafe
  10. Desk-friendly food
  11. Granny chic
  12. Local Is the New Organic
  13. Going Off the Grid Goes Upscale
  14. Nike Puts out Its Recycling
  15. Working My Way Back to You, Babe
  16. Insurgents Top Incumbents
  17. The Vogue of the 500-Year Plan
  18. Wall Street Gets a Serious Googling
  19. Ningbo Bird Gets the Wireless Worm
  20. If Our Clothes Are Smart . . .
  21. . . . Why Should Our Shoes Be Stupid?
  22. I See . . . a Rat Taking a Dirt Nap
  23. Heavyweight Hybrids
  24. Every Move You Make
  25. Customized health plans
  26. Corporate chaplains
  27. Vacation accrual transfer
  28. Invasive, Invisible Security
  29. Old Vodka in New Bottles
  30. Pop-up Retail
  31. Jargon Alert! Time Sovereignty
  32. Brandenburg’s Digital Concerto
  33. Jargon Alert! Jargon Is Dead.
  34. Smells Like Brand Spirit
  35. It’s French for Productivity
  36. We Have a Class for You, Corinne
  37. Do-It-Themselves Computers
  38. Economic Hot Spots: Look Away
  39. Yo Quiero Pollo Campero
  40. A Niftier Mitt
  41. Yair Landau vice chairman, Sony Pictures Entertainment; president, Sony Pictures Digital
  42. DVD’s replacement
  43. Scott Newnam founder and CEO, GoldPocket Interactive
  44. Live call-in quiz shows storm American TV
  45. A Blameless Existence
  46. Robocopter
  47. Bye, Bye, Forecasting Template
  48. Get Small
  49. Your Next Business Strategy
  50. The Rise of Global Talent Webs
  1. Luxe Experiences
  2. Mini-Soaps
  3. Megapastors
  4. Marketing Research’s Next Frontier
  5. Most Endangered Profession
  6. Combo Drugs
  7. 21st Century Etch A Sketch
  8. Where the Boys Are
  9. The last email refuge disappears
  10. Trip Hawkins founder, Digital Chocolate
  11. Ringtones die
  12. MoSoSo
  13. Where the Women Are
  14. Tap the Collective Intelligence
  15. Alzheimer’s Drugs
  16. The Return of the Balanced Diet
  17. The New GI Bill
  18. Trailer Chic (Now With Plyboo!)
  19. Forever 21
  20. Institutionalizing Imagination
  21. The Apostle of Offshoring . . .
  22. . . . And Why He’ll Stay Busy
  23. Wireless Cities
  24. The Shopping Cart of the Future
  25. Software Becomes a Utility
  26. Liquid crystal on silicon TVs (LCOS)
  27. Dyson’s space-age vacuum
  28. Oakley’s Thump sunglasses with built-in MP3
  29. Sony’s PlayStation 3
  30. Hershey’s Take Five bar
  31. The Ad Agency’s Metamorphosis
  32. Hierarchies: Not Going Anywhere
  33. Soda for Pop (and Mom, Too)
  34. Two-Pizza Teams Rule the Day
  35. Oh, Behave!
  36. TV Commercials Get Smart Online
  37. A Revealing Machine
  38. Script injection infects the Web
  39. Brand-name adjectives
  40. Betty Crocker Pour and Frost
  41. Bill McComb president of McNeil Consumer & Specialty Pharmaceuticals, Johnson & Johnson
  42. Deborah Henretta president of global baby care, Procter & Gamble
  43. Dara Khosrowshahi EVP and CFO, InterActiveCorp
  44. Kathy Marinello president and CEO, GE Fleet Services
  45. Maynard G. Webb Jr. COO, eBay
  46. Running Hot and Cold
  47. The Concept of the Concept
  48. The Rise of the Machines
  49. The Master of the Master Idea
  50. Special Effects Meets Product Placement

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