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As a company of forward-thinkers, trendsetters, and cutting-edge professionals, we’re always looking ahead to see how our industry will evolve so that we can serve our clients in the best ways possible. To that end, we asked FCGers with a variety of expertise to predict the big-ticket trends that we’ll see in 2018. Here’s the future as they see it:

I see a great rise in Virtual Reality. It seems to have infiltrated everything from everyday games played by young children to training future military and navy recruits. – Mansi, Associate Software Engineer

GIS has typically been a tool for federal, state, and local governments, and even within those spaces it has been reserved for specific sectors. This is changing, and I believe the acceleration will continue in 2018. The growth is being spurred by both a demand-side pull in which a general data revolution has caught the eye of the private sector, and a simultaneous supply-side push of new venture capital flowing into both systems and data creation. At the same time, cloud computing and smart phone technology are converging to create capabilities that would have been unimaginable in the private sector a decade ago. The traditional actors in this space like NASA, NGA, and ESRI are not going anywhere soon, but a new wave of geospatial curiosity is emerging. It is an exciting time to be outside those traditional spaces, and an exciting time to be a geographer. – Brian, Program Manager

I think the Internet of Things (IoT) will be a big trend in the upcoming years. More and more, we see everyday items being connected to phones, computers, and smart devices. Whether it be Fitbits or smart lights, demand only seems to be increasing for such items and the convenience they can bring. – Hunter, Associate Software Engineer

A trend that I’ve been seeing for the past couple of years leading into 2018 has been the increasing use of NoSQL databases. Even 3-4 years ago, the only databases that I saw were large-scale Oracle databases. However, as requirements change, I’m seeing document databases (Mongo), column stores (Cassandra/HBase), key-value databases (Redis), graph databases (Neo4j), and even combination databases, such as Postgres and ArangoDB. – Joe, Database Engineer

I believe that we will continue to see high demand in software languages such as Ruby, Java, and Python, thus driving colleges and universities to focus on these more marketable programming languages compared to some of the more traditional, older languages. Ruby continues to be extremely popular and in high demand in 2018 due to its strong kit in the web app development sphere; Java and python are becoming the most popular programming languages for their vast capabilities in the eCommerce space, as well as being some of the best programming languages for teaching students. – Ryan, Software Engineer

In 2018, I believe the push to a server-less architecture will be huge for Web Development. The sever-less model allows for your web applications to be more scalable and rapidly deployed, which will speed up the end-to-end development process. Amazon’s AWS platform has already made great strides in this regard, so any project able to utilize their technology stack would be ahead of the game. – Theo, Junior Software Engineer

Whether you have a comment on one of our predictions or you fancy yourself a futurist, we’d love to hear your thoughts! Drop them in the comment box below.

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