What the news from CES 2014 means for businesses.

Big news: Wearing wearables for work will make them not weird.

Wired has a nice article featuring JP Gownder, who just reported on wearables at CES. The point he makes is that specialized tools for professionals like doctors and police will normalize and bring to market wearables in a way geek-elite Glasshole echolalia never can. Alibi Archive-style agency-based compliance tools like Taser cams are already on the market; augmented vision for firefighters is a strong possibility. And isn't that how we've always seen wearables in science fiction? As law enforcement HUDs and surgeon's tools and psychic instant-messaging for top-level executives?

There are many different ways to wear things on your body, which means wearable devices can be tailored to the job at hand. The job at hand doesn�t have to be tailored to the device.

Then there's smarter computers. Semantic search, Siri and her sisters, what Jason Hiner calls "Contextual Computing".

Will digital personal assistants add quality of life for workers who can't quite afford meat ones, but are still too slammed by 80-hour work-weeks to order flowers or book a car service to pick up the kids? You're soaking in it, and you're too tired to care if it's creepy.

3. Contextual computing</p>
<p>You may not have heard of this one. That's because I made up the name. I'm not trying to be clever � I had to call it something. I'm talking about the stuff that Robert Scoble and Shel Israel focused on in their book The Age of Context. Om Malik referred to it as

  Om Malik calls it Predictive Computing. Or just magic.


The iPad app MindMeld, made by the startup Expect Labs, listens in on your conference call and starts to display relevant information based on what you're talking about. When I'm speaking, you might see basic facts about me from my Wikipedia page.

And the endless flood of tablet options means BYOD and CYOD will be bigger than ever, and they'll change the way you hire.

Generation Y is different. They're approaching work with a lot of demands, because the American Dream has failed them pretty drastically. They want flex-time, agency, working from home and their device and/or platform of choice, because they know they're not getting a house, retirement or a middle class life.

We love this ZDNet article on the next stage of the consumerization of IT, the "work-life smoothie". Sounds horrible, but has profound implications in how the Millennial workforce makes job choices. And if you want to attract the best Millennial workers, you'll adapt. Reminds me of a story of a friend of ours, who showed up for his first day as a Dropbox dev at one in the afternoon. He wanted them to know right away what they were getting, and he didn't get fired.