Many of us lead an “always-on” lifestyle - e.g. using smartphones to stay in touch with faraway friends. And under pressure from Covid companies have learned to use technologies to enable employees to work remotely. “Always-on” has indeed become ubiquitous: With Apps for people, data for companies, IoT for machines, AI for decision making, robotics for automation, and many, many more.

To be “always-on” means to be always connected. And technologies including 5G enable the real-time connecting of people, machines, and sensors, regardless of distance. These technologies empower entrepreneurs to solve previously unsolvable problems: A surgeon can now use technology to save the lives of patients on the other side of the world. And anyone can be automatically alerted if a faraway family member needs help. However, some questionable uses have also appeared: Off-the-shelf drones are used for real-time targeting of artillery fire in the war in Ukraine, and there is a constant battle to protect private data against illegal use for commercial, political, or criminal uses. And not everybody has equal access to this technology, putting them at a disadvantage in our increasingly connected world.

This class explores the use of technologies that are at the foundation of connectivity for people, communities, businesses, factories, and the environment. Each student will choose a team to join based on their own interests and knowledge. Each team will apply “always-on” connectivity to an area to develop and test possible solutions, build prototypes and develop a new business. The following are proposals for areas that teams may choose:

  • Connected me (personal use, food, hygiene, shopping)
  • Connected community (friends, family, and neighborhood use)
  • Connected health (health, health care, fitness, free time, aging)
  • Connected study (learning, both as students and as teachers)
  • Connected work (in-person and remote work, teamwork)
  • Connected factory (manufacturing, robotics, Industry 4.0, agriculture)
  • Connected planet (environment, climate change)

Instructors

gert-christen

Innovation strategist, digital shaper and technology thought leader. Life-long tech company manager, builder of startup incubators, new business launcher and award-winning technology marketer. 15 years of passionately teaching ecological, social, and civic entrepreneurship. Founder of world’s first App stores, Senior Advisor to McKinsey & Company.

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Contact scet-academics@berkeley.edu for additional questions.

Refer to our Courses page for a full list of SCET courses and current class offerings, and our Certificate page for more information on our Certificate in Entrepreneurship & Technology.